Dr. Stephen Ziegler’s research is directed toward examining the legal barriers to the treatment of pain, preventing the abuse of prescription drugs, and exploring the complexities associated with end of life decision making, with the ultimate goal of reducing unnecessary human suffering. Dr. Ziegler worked as a research fellow at the Institute of Legal Medicine in Zurich where he studied the Swiss model of assisted suicide to explore its potential to inform the regulation of assisted death in the United States.
Some of his findings have already been published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), and subsequent articles that he wrote with his Swiss colleagues in journals such as the Journal of Medical Ethics and Death Studies. The second and primary strand of Dr. Ziegler’s research program focuses on opioid (drug) regulation for its potential impact on the treatment of pain. A former Mayday Pain Scholar and a 2014 recipient of a national fellowship in pain and society from the Mayday Pain Foundation, Dr. Ziegler continues to publish and provide consultation on the topic of opioid risk management. He has been a member of several professional organizations associated with his research such as the American Society of Law, Medicine, and Ethics; and the American Society of Bioethics & Humanities.