Headshot of Johan C. Bester, MBChB, PhD, MPhil

Johan C. Bester, MBChB, PhD, MPhil

Interim Assistant Dean for Biomedical Science Education
Department(s): Medicine
Office: University Medical Center - 2040 Building
Mail Code: 3070
Phone: 702-895-1557
Email: johan.bester@unlv.edu


Johan Bester, MBChB, PhD, is a bioethicist with experience and expertise in medical school education, clinical ethics practice, and bioethical analysis.

Dr. Bester completed medical training in South Africa, and practiced family and emergency medicine for 12 years in a variety of settings, including South Africa, the United Kingdom, and Canada. During this time, he completed a Master’s degree in Applied Ethics, and eventually a PhD in Applied Ethics with focus on bioethics. His PhD dissertation examined the ethics of pediatric vaccinations, with special reference to measles vaccination. He taught and practiced Family Medicine at the University of Calgary’s Department of Family Medicine, where he provided leadership to the Family Medicine Residency’s ethics curriculum.

Prior to joining the Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine at UNLV, Dr. Bester completed a year of fellowship training in clinical ethics at Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio, and spent an additional year on staff as a clinical ethicist at the Cleveland Clinic. Here he actively taught bioethics in the medical school and medical center, engaged in bioethics scholarship and publication, and provided ethics consultations in the hospital.

Dr. Bester provides leadership to the bioethics curriculum at the Kerkorian School of Medicine. He is also the director of the Analytics in Medicine course, a longitudinal course that fosters analytical thinking, and includes evidence-based medicine and epidemiology as components. He remains active in bioethics scholarship, and has an active writing and publication agenda. His work focuses on the ethical aspects of vaccination, pediatric ethics, justice, best interests, medical decision-making, ethical theory, and related concepts.