Lethal injection as a component of a therapeutics toxicology module

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1 Scopus citations


Objective. To create and implement a required module that addresses both the clinical and ethical issues surrounding the use of lethal injection as a means of capital punishment. Design. As a component of a pharmacotherapeutics module in toxicology, pharmacy students were introduced to ethical and clinical considerations and controversies with the use of drugs as a means of capital punishment. Basic information was provided on the history of capital punishment and the origins of lethal injection. Pharmacotherapeutic limitations and challenges were presented in the context of clinical and ethical dilemmas. Assessment. Instructed material was assessed using block course examinations that had both objective and subjective components. Students were asked to synthesize information by both purposing a lethal injection reversal protocol and by acting as consults in the fictional design of more effective lethal injection protocols. Students provided formative and summative evaluations of the instruction through regular student liaison meetings and summative course evaluations. Conclusion. Lethal injection as a means of capital punishment in the United States is a controversial and ethically challenging topic on which pharmacists may be consulted and therefore should be knowledgeable about. Students positively evaluated this lethal injection module, which covered multiple clinical and ethical issues.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Pharmaceutical Education
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • General Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics
  • Pharmacy


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