In the process of preparing for my Ethics in the ER course, I've encountered a number of resources that folks interested in medical ethics may find useful. Every so often, I'll review and link them here. The first feature is Virtual Mentor. This is an online open-source journal published by the American Medical Association as a resource for teaching medical ethics. The content is decided by a panel of resident physicians and medical students with interests in ethics. The outcome is a forum for important conversations about current topics in health care. This month's issue, for example, addresses homelessness.
Each month, the journal posts editorials, literature reviews, policy positions, and my favorite section: case analyses. In general, the articles are interesting and accessible. Contributions are short to medium length, are written by qualified authors, and most of the time include varied viewpoints. The journal exists on a platform that is easy to use with .pdfs of every article and has some extra features like a podcast and a quiz from every issue. I understand that the entire journal will soon be listed in Pubmed. VM also compiles an excellent library of case studies and analyses from each of its issues. If you ever are curious about a particular issue in medical ethics, I recommend you consult this case index first.
Disclosure: I am an issue editor for Virtual Mentor's 2009/2010 year and am looking forward to assembling an issue related to emergency medicine ethics.