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September 11, 2018

Navigating the Ethical Boundaries of Grateful Patient Fundraising

Author Affiliations
  • 1Berman Institute of Bioethics, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 2Wilmer Eye Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 3Johns Hopkins Medicine Philanthropy Institute, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 4Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
JAMA. 2018;320(10):975-976. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.11655

Health care institutions in the United States receive more than $10 billion annually in charitable gifts.1 These gifts, often from grateful patients, benefit physicians, institutions, and other patients through the expansion of clinical and research activities, community-based programs, and educational initiatives. With a decade-long reduction in federal funding for research, which has just been partially restored, and constraints on state and local budgets for clinical programs, the relevance of grateful patient philanthropy has increased over the past decade.