Contact Media Relations 614-293-3737

June 22, 2011

MekhjianHagopCOLUMBUS, Ohio – A $2 million gift to The Ohio State University Medical Center is funding the establishment of a chair of medical ethics and professionalism, a position and program unique among the nation’s academic medical centers.

As part of the new program, Ohio State will annually host a national conference bringing together experts from multiple disciplines for discussion of emerging topics on integrity and professionalism in medicine.

The Hagop S. Mekhjian Chair in Medical Ethics and Professionalism is funded by friends and colleagues of Dr. Hagop Mekhjian, a physician on the Medical Center staff for more than 40 years, who has held numerous leadership positions, including medical director.

Establishing a program to train physicians in medical ethics is a milestone for the university, according to Dr. Steven G. Gabbe, CEO of OSU Medical Center, who has been instrumental in planning the program for the past year.

“Integrity is among the strongest commitments that we make to our patients and to each other. Whether we treat patients, work in a laboratory or teach in a classroom, our moral standards and professionalism come into play each and every day, and they remain a part of us throughout our careers,” said Gabbe.

“We are grateful to Hagop’s many friends for this gift and their shared desire that Ohio State University Medical Center become a national leader in teaching medical ethics and professionalism.”

“Few people place a higher value on the importance of integrity in the doctor – patient relationship than Hagop Mekhjian,” said Gabbe. “Honoring him with a chair that creates a program of national eminence is so appropriate for a person who has been a standard bearer in this field for many years.”

The first Hagop Mekhjian Medical Ethics Day will be held Sept. 18 at Ohio State.

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Contact: David Crawford, OSU Medical Center Public Affairs and Media Relations, 614-293-3737, or Crawford.1@osu.edu