Children’s Mercy Kansas City Terminates Director of Bioethics Center
Children’s Mercy Kansas City has terminated John Lantos, MD, Director of the Bioethics Center, effective immediately. Brian Carter, MD, has been named Interim Director of the Bioethics Center and will provide leadership for the program during this critical transition. Dr. Carter joined Children’s Mercy in 2012 and is a board-certified clinician-educator trained in pediatrics, neonatal-perinatal medicine, bioethics and palliative care. In addition, Dr. Carter is the Editor-in-Chief of Clinical Pediatrics. Children’s Mercy will conduct a national search for a permanent Director of the Bioethics Center.
In late January 2022, Children’s Mercy became aware of an inappropriate relationship between Dr. Lantos and a former Children’s Mercy employee while under his supervision. After an immediate and thorough investigation by independent, outside counsel, it was determined that Dr. Lantos failed to maintain professional boundaries and used his position in seeking to influence actions and decisions by Children’s Mercy and third parties without disclosure of the relationship. Dr. Lantos’ conduct was an unacceptable breach of Children’s Mercy’s values, standards of behavior and policies.
Although the investigation found no evidence of this conduct impacting patients or their care, Children’s Mercy does not tolerate these behaviors and took swift action to terminate Dr. Lantos. This was a clear decision made in the best interest of the Bioethics Center and our mission.
The Bioethics Center at Children’s Mercy is one of only several pediatric bioethics centers in the United States and is critical to the organization’s mission. Children’s Mercy is partnering with external bioethicists to conduct an independent, unbiased assessment of our Bioethics Center. We are committed to ensuring our internationally recognized program continues to enable the application of ethical principles to decisions impacting our patients and families, our organization, and our community.
About Children’s Mercy
Founded in 1897, Children’s Mercy is a leading independent children’s health organization dedicated to holistic care, translational research, educating caregivers and breakthrough innovation to create a world of well-being for all children. With not-for-profit hospitals in Missouri and Kansas, and numerous specialty clinics in both states, Children’s Mercy provides the highest level of care for children from birth through the age of 21. U.S. News & World Report has repeatedly ranked Children’s Mercy as one of “America's Best Children's Hospitals.” For the fifth consecutive time in a row, Children’s Mercy has achieved Magnet nursing designation, awarded to only about 8% of all hospitals nationally, for excellence in quality care. More than 850 pediatric subspecialists, researchers and faculty across more than 40 subspecialties are actively involved in clinical care, pediatric research and education of the next generation of pediatric subspecialists. Thanks to generous philanthropic and volunteer support, Children’s Mercy provides hope, comfort and the prospect of brighter tomorrows to every child who passes through its doors. Visit Children’s Mercy and the Children’s Mercy Research Institute to learn more, and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube for the latest news and videos.