Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine.
Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Maureen Kelley Ph.D.

Maureen Kelley, Ph.D.

Maureen Kelley, Ph.D.

Maureen Kelley, Ph.D.

Affiliate Assistant Member 
Outcomes, Quality, and Other Initiatives Research Program
The Methodist Hospital Research Institute

Assistant Professor
Division of Bioethics
Department of Pediatrics
University of Washington School of Medicine

Scholar, Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics
Seattle Children’s Hospital
Member, University of Washington Global Center for Integrated Health of Women, Adolescents and Children

E-mail:  mckelley@u.washington.edu
Phone: 206-884-7877


Ph.D.   Rice University Houston, TX (Philosophy)
M.A.   Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH (Applied Philosophy)
B.A.    University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Charlotte, NC (Philosophy)


Maureen Kelley is a bioethicist, working in maternal, neonatal and child health. She is an assistant professor in the pediatrics department in the bioethics division at the University of Washington School of Medicine. She holds joint appointments to the faculty at the Treuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics and the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth at Seattle Children’s Research Institute.

Dr. Kelley also serves on the affiliated faculty at the University of Washington’s Center for Human Rights and is a member of the new UW Global Center for Integrated Health of Women, Adolescents and Children. She earned her Ph.D. in philosophy with a specialization in bioethics at Rice University, and completed her clinical bioethics training at Baylor College of Medicine’s program in Medical Ethics and Health Policy. She has held faculty appointments at Baylor College of Medicine and the University of Alabama Sparkman Center for Global Health.

As an Affiliate Assistant Member of the Research Institute, Dr. Kelley serves as consulting faculty to the Chao Program for International Research Ethics, a program led by Dr. Susan Miller at Methodist.

Description of Research

Dr. Kelley’s research has two goals: (1) Identifying ethical dilemmas that impact barriers to care for vulnerable pediatric populations (orphans, homeless youth, and wards of the state), and (2) identifying ethical dilemmas that impact access to antenatal-postpartum care for women in developing countries, with special attention to poor pregnancy outcomes, such as prematurity and stillbirth.   In addition to her primary areas of research, Dr. Kelley continues to advise various interdisciplinary teams on research ethics and vulnerable populations.

Major Areas of Research

Bioethics, research ethics, vulnerable populations

Recent Publications

Fletcher FE, Ndebele P, Kelley MC. Infant feeding and HIV in Sub-Saharan Africa: what lies beneath the dilemma? Theor Med Bioeth. 2008;29(5):307-30. PMID: 1904839

Tabor HK, Kelley M. Challenges in the use of direct-to-consumer personal genome testing in children. Am J Bioeth. 2009;9(6-7):32-4. PMID: 19998111

Kelley M, Rubens CE; GAPPS Review Group. Global report on preterm birth and stillbirth (6 of 7): ethical considerations. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2010 Feb 23;10 Suppl 1:S6. PMID: 20233387

Kelley M.  Should international adoption be part of humanitarian aid efforts? Lessons from Haiti. Bioethics. 2010 Sep;24(7):373-80. PMID: 20690921

Kelley M. Counting stillbirths: women's health and reproductive rights. Lancet. 2011 May 14;377(9778):1636-7. PMID: 21496905

Gracie S, Pennell C, Ekman-Ordeberg G, Lye S, McManaman J, Williams S, Palmer L, Kelley M, Menon R, Gravett M; PREBIC "-Omics" Research Group. An integrated systems biology approach to the study of preterm birth using "-omic" technology--a guideline for research. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2011 Oct 12;11:71. PMID: 21992798

Buchanan A, Kelley MC. Biodefence and the production of knowledge: rethinking the problem. J Med Ethics. 2011 Dec 22. PMID:22194319

Kelley M, Edwards K, Starks H, Fullerton SM, James R, Goering S, Holland S, Disis ML, Burke W. Values in Translation: How Asking the Right Questions Can Move Translational Science Toward Greater Health Impact. Clinical and Translational Science. doi: 10.1111/j.1752-8062.2012.00441.x