Jean Abbott, MD, MH

Professor Emerita

jean abbottemail:
office:    Fulginiti Pavilion - Room 201B

Jean Abbott is a board-certified Emergency Medicine physician who has been a faculty member at the University of Colorado since the inception of Emergency Medicine at CU in 1985. She is currently retired from EM practice but still teaches ethics and professionalism to medical students and residents on the Anschutz campus, and is a member of the University of Colorado Hospital Ethics Committee. For 20 years she was a lead ethics consultant at UCH.

She lectures regionally and nationally and writes about ethics and professionalism issues in emergency medicine and other clinical practice settings through the Center for Bioethics and Humanities. She currently writes and leads the ethics content for the CU Palliative Care Certificate and Master’s Program. She also teaches and facilitates Advance Care Planning conversations through community presentations.

During the pandemic, Jean has been a lead organizer of the Colorado Healthcare Ethics Resource group, leading in creating crisis standards for palliative care and hospice and publishing about those critical needs and advocating with a group of colleagues across the state.


  • Undergraduate Education:  Bryn Mawr College, Bryn Mawr, PA
  • Medical Education: University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA
  • Internship/Residency:  San Joaquin General Hospital, Stockton, CA
  • Master of Humanities:  University of Colorado, Denver, CO


  • Palliative care ethics
  • Clinical ethics consultation
  • Professionalism and moral distress
  • Complex and “difficult” patients in the healthcare system
  • The challenges of advance care planning and end-of life ethics