Patrick McCruden, D.Bioethics, MTS, HEC-C

  • Lecturer, Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics, Stritch School of Medicine

Advanced Degrees

  • D.Bioethics, Loyola University Chicago, IL
  • MTS, Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, IL



Patrick McCruden, D. Bioethics, MTS, BCC, serves as Senior Vice President and Chief Mission Integration Officer for SSM Health, a Catholic, not -for-profit health system serving the comprehensive health needs of communities across the Midwest.  With care delivery sites in Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma and Wisconsin, SSM Health includes 20 hospitals, more than 60 outpatient care sites, a pharmacy benefit company, an insurance company, two nursing homes, comprehensive home care and hospice services, a technology company and one Accountable Care Organization. In his role Patrick leads the strategic integration of SSM Health’s Mission, Values, Vision and Catholic identity into all aspects of the organization from culture and structure, to policies, programs and practices.  He leads the development and implementation of a full continuum of activities designed to spiritually, ethically and culturally enrich SSM Health employees and physicians.

Patrick has been a part of Catholic healthcare for over 30 years. Patrick's initial work in healthcare was in pastoral care.  He is a certified chaplain and worked for fifteen years primarily as a chaplain and director of pastoral care, before moving into the mission integration and bioethics field.  For the last 20 years he was worked for health systems in Iowa, Arkansas and Missouri.

He developed the first hospital-based children’s advocacy center in the state of Arkansas and serves as its Board Chair.  He also serves on numerous local and regional boards of directors and serves nationally on the Theologian and Ethicist Advisory Council for the Catholic Health Association.

Dr. McCruden received his undergraduate education at New York University and the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul Minnesota.  He continued his graduate education at Catholic Theological Union on the South side of Chicago and trained as a hospital chaplain at the University of Chicago hospitals and clinics.  He received his bioethics education at Loyola University Chicago. Patrick earned his Master's of Art in Bioethics and Health Policy in 2004 and completed his Doctorate in Bioethics and Health Policy in 2012.


BEHP 401 Clinical Bioethics
BEHP 403 Ethics Across the Care Contiuum
BEHL 415 Catholic Bioethics in Clinical Practice
BEHL 505 Advanced Concepts in Health Systems Management


McCruden PJ. Unity Across Diversity: Catholic Identity and Physician Practices in Catholic Health Care. Healthcare Ethics USA 2014;22(3): 35-44.

McCruden PJ. The Affordable Care Act and Community Benefit: A Mandate Catholic Health Care Can (Partly) Embrace. Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 2013.

McCruden PJ. “The Moral Object in the Phoenix Case’: A Defense of Sister McBride’s Decision,” Christian Bioethics, December 2012.

McCruden PJ. Book Review: “Is God Still at the Bedside,” Health Progress, September-October 2011.

McCruden, PJ, Kuczewski, MG. “Is Organizational Ethics the Remedy for Failure to Thrive? Toward an Understanding of Mission Leadership,” Healthcare Ethics Committee Forum, 342-348. December 2006.

Bayley C, Boyle P, Heller J, McCruden PJ, O’Brien, D. “Shedding light on organizational ethics. Five ethicists help define and contextualize an elusive topic.”  Health Progress 2006 Nov-Dec;87(6):28-33.

Kuczewski MG, McCruden, PJ. “Informed Consent: Does it Take a Village?” Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, 34-46. January 2001.

Selected Invited Presentations

“Legal, Ethical and Policy Implications of the Arkansas Healthcare Decisions Act” The 2015 Intensive Healthcare Ethics Workshop. May 7-8, 2015. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. Little Rock, Arkansas.

The Moral Imperative to Population Health,” The 12th Annual Conference on Contemporary Catholic Healthcare Ethics. October 10, 2014. Loyola University Chicago, Stritch School of Medicine. 

“Catholic Identity and Physician Practices: Continuing the Dialogue,” The 11th Annual Conference on Contemporary Catholic Healthcare Ethics. March 14, 2014. Loyola University Chicago, Stritch School of Medicine. 

“The Moral Object in the ‘Phoenix Case’: A Defense of Sister McBride's Decision,” October 7, 2011. 9th Annual Conference on Contemporary Catholic Healthcare Ethics; Loyola University Chicago, Stritch School of Medicine. 

“Approaches to Ethical Decision Making and Current Issues in Artificial Nutrition and Hydration,” July 10, 2009. Arkansas Hospice Association: Little Rock, Arkansas.

“A Short Walk through the Ethical and Religious Directives,” October 9, 2008. 7th Annual Conference on Contemporary Catholic Healthcare Ethics; Loyola University Chicago, Stritch School of Medicine.

“Organizational Ethics,” March 2, 2007;  Catholic Health Care Ethics:  The Tradition and Contemporary Culture;   Loyola University Chicago, Stritch School of Medicine.

“Ethical and Legal Issues in End of Life Care,” March 9, 2006. American Case Management Association, Mid-South Case Management Conference; Little Rock, Arkansas.

“Catholic Health Care as Mission,” March 1, 2006.  Catholic Health Care Ethics: The Tradition, Current Challenges and Justice; Loyola University Chicago, Stritch School of Medicine.