Portuguese doctor named as an advisor to Pope Francisco

The president of the Portuguese Association of Bioethics, Rui Nunes, has been appointed to the advisory team of Pope Francisco in the areas of human dignity facing the challenges of science and technology, announced today in a statement.

Rui Nunes was appointed a member of the Pontificia Accademia Pro Vita (Pontifical Academy for Life), whose mission is to advise Pope Francisco on the values of life and respect for human dignity, especially in the face of the challenges of science and technology.

It is a great honour for the reference that Pope Francisco represents today for all humanity,” assumes the coordinator of the Research Department of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Chair in Bioethics.

Rui Nunes, quoted in the note, said that he accepted this task “in a spirit of mission and with a deep sense of responsibility, given that the challenges that the biomedical sciences are currently facing on a global scale imply an unprecedented ethical reflection.”

Also a professor at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Porto (FMUP), Rui Nunes points out that it is a “great honour” to integrate the team of counsellors of Pope Francisco for the values that he defends and that makes him an “irreplaceable character of the 21st century.

The Pontificia Accademia Pro Vita was created in 1994 and has as its mission the study, information and training on the main problems of the biomedical sciences and the law related to the promotion and defence of life, especially in its direct relation with Christian morality and the guidelines of the Church.

The Academy is presided by Monsignor Vincenzo Paglia from August 2016.

Born in Porto in 1961, Rui Nunes graduated in Medicine at FMUP in 1985 and in 1996 obtained the Doctor’s Degree in Medicine in the area of Bioethics.

In 2002 obtained the title of aggregate in Medical Sociology and in 2009 the title of aggregate in Bioethics in this faculty.

He is Director of the Doctoral Program in Bioethics (FMUP / CFM), of the Doctoral Program in Palliative Care, of the Postgraduate Course in Hospital Management and Administration, and is a member of the Medical-Legal Council of the Ministry of Justice and a member of the Ethics of the National Institute of Legal Medicine.


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