Annual Cathy Shine Lecture

Boston University School of Public Health’s Center for Health Law, Ethics & Human Rights presents the annual Cathy Shine lecture. The lectureship honors the memory of Cathy Shine and her dedication to the rights of all those in need of care. Shine had been restrained against her will at a Boston hospital while recovering from an asthma attack. The trauma she experienced led her to avoid hospital treatment and advocate for the rights of patients. Before her death in 1992, Shine authored a book on race-based discrimination in criminal justice proceedings, Does the Punishment Fit the Crime, published by The Sentencing Project. Shine and her family formed a bond with Professor George Annas, director of the center, who recounted Shine’s experience in arguing for the rights of patients to refuse restraints in a highly regarded article in the New England Journal of Medicine. We are grateful to the Shine family for the generous gift, which permitted the establishment of the annual Cathy Shine Lecture to offer fresh perspectives on protecting the human rights of patients.

Americans make more than 140 million trips to the emergency room each year, but usually don’t know the price until a bill shows up in the mail. New York Times journalist Sarah Kliff spent 18 months collecting thousands of emergency room bills, and made public the prices that hospitals try to keep secret. From $629 Band Aids to $5,571 charges for just sitting in a waiting room, Ms. Kliff will discuss what her reporting found, what it tells us about the American health care system, and the policy solutions Congress could use to fix it.


  • @sarahkliff

    Sarah Kliff

    Investigative Reporter, the New York Times

  • Wendy Mariner

    MODERATOR Emeritus Professor, Boston University School of Public Health


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    The high costs of healthcare in the US can be catastrophic, forcing some
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    Journalist @SarahKliff spent months collecting ER bills and made public
    the high prices that hospitals try to hide. On Feb 10, Kliff will join @BUSPH
    to discuss what she found and what it tells us about our healthcare
    system. #SPHConversations Register: Click to Tweet