Despite the (serious) global concerns about the safety and genetic stability of genetically modified organisms, the Malaysian National Biosafety Board (NBB) has recently approved the field testing for genetically modified (GM) male mosquitoes. With this development, bioethicalissues, which in some respect could adversely impinge on the social, economic and environmental aspects of the society, have surfaced, and these concerns must be addressed by the authorities concerned. In reviewing this application, the National Biosafety Board has followed the requirements (...) of the Biosafety Act 2007, which was created to strike a balance between promoting biotechnology and at the same time protecting against its potential environmental and human health risks in Malaysia. However, the 2007 Act fails to adequately take into account any bioethicalissues in spite of the inclusion of a provision on socio-economic consideration. As part of an ongoing doctoral research project, and by way of an instrumental critique of the 2007 Act, the present paper attempts to address the role and function of the Malaysia biosafety legal framework in governing bioethical concerns relating to Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) within the current biotechnology background in Malaysia. Additionally, the paper suggests that the ambiguity of the provisions contained within the 2007 Act in governing such concerns, representing wider societal interests and welfare, in some ways might defeat the balancing role that this act was originally intended to fulfil. (shrink)
Bioethical debate in Europe is partly a reaction to political endeavors and events. In line with the political goal of a united Europe, a European regulation is being sought for medical research and medical ethics ('Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine'). A certain degree of ambivalence has come to the fore: whilst it does seem possible to reach a consensus (albeit a merely 'diplomatic' consensus) about complicated bioethicalissues at an international level when certain controversial matters are (...) excluded or a certain vagueness maintained, new principles are also required at a national level, for example when the medical profession of one state feels obliged to assume a 'local' stance, such as in the sensitive issue of termination of treatment. The individual contributions to this publication, together with various other current fields of bioethical conflict in Europe - especially Germany - are introduced below against a common background, namely that the original dividing line between the concealed and the revealed has shifted. (shrink)
The role of nursing faculty members in charge of ethics education is important. Although all nursing students receive the same bioethics education, their experiences differ, related to ethical qualification, which depends on the personal socialization process. This Korean study aimed to provide nursing faculty members with the basic data to help them develop as bioethics experts and provide nursing students with knowledge to improve their ethical decision-making abilities. We used a survey design to assess recognition of bioethicalissues (...) and ethical qualification in nursing students and faculty members. A total of 1225 undergraduate students and 140 faculty members participated in this study. The results revealed that nursing students and nursing faculty members generally understood the seriousness of various bioethicalissues and both considered the most serious issue to concern abortion. Ethical behavior can be improved by education, and accordingly, nursing ethics should be a mandatory subject, rather than an elective one. (shrink)
Abstract Some aspects of the coverage of bioethicalissues in Japanese (11) and German (10 series) biology textbooks for lower secondary school have been investigated, concentrating on the treatment of environmental issues. It was found that German textbooks devote more space to these problems than the Japanese ones and that the style of presentation in German books is aimed at appealing to the emotions of the pupils, whereas that of the Japanese ones is a more traditional scientific (...) one. The inclusion of ethical view points in biology teaching is discussed in this context. (shrink)
Introduction -- Rational anthropology and the difference between persons and animals -- Human freedom and conscience -- The three moral determinants and doubts of conscience -- The principle of double effect and consequentialism -- Cooperation and scandal -- Virtues--natural and supernatural -- Sin and grace -- Revelation -- Reproductive technologies -- Homosexuality and same-sex marriage -- Contraception -- Abortion -- Marriage and family -- End of life issues -- Appendix A : Summary of Evangelium Vitae -- Appendix B : (...) Summary of Savifici Doloris. (shrink)
Annual and cumulative incidences of HIV+ and AIDS in patients reported by the AIDS Surveillance Committee of the Ministry of Health and Welfare are cited to illustrate some characteristics in Japan: nearly 59% of either HIV+ or AIDS patients were infected through injection of blood products or by blood transfusion. A number of plaintiffs have sued the Japanese government and pharmaceutical companies since 1989, but no judicial decisions have yet been made. The incidence of HIV decreases for each of the (...) following routes of infection: the second highest route of transmission being heterosexual, followed by bisexual and unconfirmed or unknown cases, and less frequently homosexual, drug use and lastly via vertical transmission. The most serious bioethical problems with HIV+ and AIDS patients in Japan is the social segregation of these patients. There are many emotional fears among the general public and medical personnel about AIDS because of their inadequate scientific knowledge of this disease. The Japan Hospital Association is doing The Stop AIDS Campaign and made several surveys. Japan has become increasingly aware of the importance of AIDS education and a great deal of effort is being made to enhance bioethical consideration. (shrink)
Moral reasoning in bioethics -- Bioethics and moral theories -- Paternalism and patient autonomy -- Truth-telling and confidentiality -- Informed consent -- Human research -- Abortion -- Reproductive technology -- Genetic choices -- Euthanasia and physician assisted suicide -- Dividing up health care resources.
Two fundamental problems in all thought can be identified: One, life and world affirmation and second, life and world negation. Indian approach is characterized as the second and hence it is claimed that moral problems have not been persistently pursued and successfully tackled in India. Points like the advaita concept of liberation, law of karma, the system of social stratification, stages of life and duties associated with them are picked up to show that theIndian system is ethically bankrupt. But along (...) with the science of salvation, the science of statecraft (arthasastra) and four objectives of human life are emphasized. The two functions of knowledge namely, theoretical and practical (arthaparicchiti and phalaprapti) referring to fact and value are recognized and it is held that knowledge of facts lead to the pursuit of values. Value is taken as the ‘object of desire’. The concept of svadharma and ahimsa are basic to it. The ‘ought of ethics’ (Dharma) is foundational to all Indian thought. A comprehensive value system consisting of spiritual, moral, material and social values and the distinction between instrumental and intrinsic values are recognized. Contemporary ethical issues relating to human rights and women, suicide, abortion and the host of problems thrown open by science and biotechnology find proper place in it. (shrink)
Bioethics at the Movies explores the ways in which popular films engage basic bioethical concepts and concerns. Twenty philosophically grounded essays use cinematic tools such as character and plot development, scene-setting, and narrative-framing to demonstrate a range of principles and topics in contemporary medical ethics. The first section plumbs popular and bioethical thought on birth, abortion, genetic selection, and personhood through several films, including The Cider House Rules, Citizen Ruth, Gattaca, and I, Robot. In the second section, the (...) contributors examine medical practice and troubling questions about the quality and commodification of life by way of Dirty Pretty Things, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and other movies. The third section's essays use Million Dollar Baby, Critical Care, Big Fish, and Soylent Green to show how the medical profession and society at large view issues related to aging, death, and dying. A final section makes use of Extreme Measures and select Spanish and Japanese films to discuss two foundational matters in bioethics: the role of theories and principles in medicine and the importance of cultural context in devising care. Structured to mirror bioethics and cinema classes, this innovative work includes end-of-chapter questions for further consideration and contributions from scholars from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Israel, Spain, and Australia. Contributors: Robert Arp, Ph.D., Michael C. Brannigan, Ph.D., Matthew Burstein, Ph.D., Antonio Casado da Rocha, Ph.D., Stephen Coleman, Ph.D., Jason T. Eberl, Ph.D., Paul J. Ford, Ph.D., Helen Frowe, M.A., Colin Gavaghan, Ph.D., Richard Hanley, Ph.D., Nancy Hansen, Ph.D., Al-Yasha Ilhaam, Ph.D., Troy Jollimore, Ph.D., Amy Kind, Ph.D., Zana Marie Lutfiyya, Ph.D., Terrance McConnell, Ph.D., Andy Miah, Ph.D., Nathan Norbis, Ph.D., Kenneth Richman, Ph.D., Karen D. Schwartz, LL.B., M.A., Sandra Shapshay, Ph.D., Daniel Sperling, LL.M., S.J.D., Becky Cox White, R.N., Ph.D., Clark Wolf, Ph.D. (shrink)
HTA and TA institutions at national parliaments (PTA) both share the same origin and of course have objectives and some of their methods in common. Nevertheless both TA branches developed in some distance during the 1970s and 1980s. Drawing on the case of biomedicine this paper outlines the differences between HTA and PTA, highlighting the “clinical perspective” of HTA and the “societal perspective” of PTA. It is shown that biomedicine which has developed rapidly during the last decade has hardly been (...) dealt with by HTA, whereas it ranked quite prominent on the agendas of PTA institutions. Biomedical technologies became a subject of policy making beyond the boundaries of health care politics since biomedicine is perceived as an ethical challenge to society and not only as a medical innovation that has to be assessed by clinical experts. It is argued that there may however be good reasons to integrate the HTA and the PTA perspective in future TA on biomedical technologies. (shrink)
OBJECTIVES: To compare the perceptions of physician executives and clinicians regarding ethical issues in Saudi Arabian hospitals and the attributes that might lead to the existence of these ethical issues. DESIGN: Self-completion questionnaire administered from February to July 1997. SETTING: Different health regions in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. PARTICIPANTS: Random sample of 457 physicians (317 clinicians and 140 physician executives) from several hospitals in various regions across the kingdom. RESULTS: There were statistically significant differences in the perceptions (...) of physician executives and clinicians regarding the existence of various ethical issues in their hospitals. The vast majority of physician executives did not perceive that seven of the eight issues addressed by the study were ethical concerns in their hospitals. However, the majority of the clinicians perceived that six of the same eight issues were ethical considerations in their hospitals. Statistically significant differences in the perceptions of physician executives and clinicians were observed in only three out of eight attributes that might possibly lead to the existence of ethical issues. The most significant attribute that was perceived to result in ethical issues was that of hospitals having a multinational staff. CONCLUSION: The study calls for the formulation of a code of ethics that will address specifically the physicians who work in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia. As a more immediate initiative, it is recommended that seminars and workshops be conducted to provide physicians with an opportunity to discuss the ethical dilemmas they face in their medical practice. (shrink)
The expanded and revised edition of Bioethics: An Anthology is a definitive one-volume collection of key primary texts for the study of bioethics. Brings together writings on a broad range of ethical issues relating such matters as reproduction, genetics, life and death, and animal experimentation. Now includes introductions to each of the sections. Features new coverage of the latest debates on hot topics such as genetic screening, the use of embryonic human stem cells, and resource allocation between patients. The (...) selections are independent of any particular approach to bioethics. Can be used as a source book to complement A Companion to Bioethics (1999). (shrink)
This book is the result of over 30 years of collaboration among its authors. It uses the systematic account of our common morality developed by one of its authors to provide a useful foundation for dealing with the moral problems and disputes that occur in the practice of medicine. The analyses of impartiality, rationality, and of morality as a public system not only explain why some bioethical questions, such as the moral acceptability of abortion, cannot be resolved, but also (...) provide a method for determining the correct answer for those occasions when a bioethical question has a unique correct answer. This new edition includes an entire chapter that has been added to address the controversial issue of abortion within the authors' distinct framework. This book presents the latest revisions of the authors' orignial analyses of the concepts of death and disease, analyses that have had a significant impact on the field of bioethics. It also includes an added chapter on mental disorders, where the authors' definition influenced what psychiatry classifies as a mental disorder, and so has had an impact that reveals beyond the field of bioethics. In this edition, the authors also offer a new, more developed perspective on the concept of valid or informed consent by considering what information physicians should be required to know before proposing screening, diagnostic testing, prescribing medications, or performing surgery. The book also integrates some of the important insights of the field of clinical epidemiology into its discussion of valid consent. Its account of paternalism and its justification, perhaps the most ubiquitous moral problem in medical ethics, has had considerable influence. Its discussion of euthanasia and physician assisted suicide challenges the standard views that have been put forward by both proponents and opponents of physician assisted suicide and voluntary active euthanasia. (shrink)
Medicine and health care generate many bioethical problems and dilemmas that are of great academic, professional and public interest. This comprehensive resource is designed as a succinct yet authoritative text and reference for clinicians, bioethicists, and advanced students seeking a better understanding of ethics problems in the clinical setting. Each chapter illustrates an ethical problem that might be encountered in everyday practice; defines the concepts at issue; examines their implications from the perspectives of ethics, law and policy; and then (...) provides a practical resolution. There are 10 key sections presenting the most vital topics and clinically relevant areas of modern bioethics. International, interdisciplinary authorship and cross-cultural orientation ensure suitability for a worldwide audience. This book will assist all clinicians in making well-reasoned and defensible decisions by developing their awareness of ethical considerations and teaching the analytical skills to deal with them effectively. (shrink)
A collection celebrating some of the best essays from the Blackwell journals, Bioethics and Developing World Bioethics. Contributors include Helga Kuhse, Michael Selgelid and Baroness Mary Warnock, former Chair of the British Government’s Committee of Inquiry into Human Fertilization and Embryology’s. Traces some of the most important concerns of the 1980s, such as the ethics of euthanasia, reproductive technologies, the allocation of scarce medical resources, surrogate motherhood, through to a range of new issues debated today, particularly in the field (...) of genetics. Includes contributions that are still as hotly debated today as they were 20 years ago and serves as a salutary reminder that free and open discussion is vital to the health of the discipline itself. Includes eight sections comprising some of the journals' best publications in methodological issues, the health care professional-patient relationship, public health ethics, research ethics, genetics, as well as beginning- and end-of-life issues. Will serve the academic bioethicists as well as students of bioethics as an excellent source book. (shrink)
Pediatric oncology has a strong research culture. Most pediatric oncologists are investigators, involved in clinical care as well as research. As a result, a remarkable proportion of children with cancer enrolls in a trial during treatment. This paper discusses the ethical consequences of the unprecedented integration of research and care in pediatric oncology from the perspective of parents and physicians.
Crito revisited -- Blindness, narrative, and meaning : moral living -- Radical experience and tragic duty : moral dying -- Needing assistance to die well : PAS and beyond -- Experiencing lost voices : dying without capacity -- Dying young : what interests do children have? -- Caring for patients : cure, palliation, comfort, and aid in the process of dying.
The Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) requires as a condition of accreditation that every health care institution -- hospital, nursing home, or home care agency -- have a standing mechanism to address ethical issues. Most organizations have chosen to fulfill this requirement with an interdisciplinary ethics committee. The best of these committees are knowledgeable, creative, and effective resources in their institutions. Many are wellmeaning but lack the information, experience, and skills to negotiate adequately the complex (...) ethical issues that arise in clinical and organizational settings. Handbook for Health Care Ethics Committees is the first resource designed to address the range of work performed by ethics committees as part of their multiple responsibilities, including education, case consultation, and policy development. It features an eight-chapter curriculum reviewing the content of contemporary health care bioethics and discussing the ethical foundations of clinical practice, with each subsequent section focusing on a set of ethical issues that commonly arise in the clinical setting. Through case studies, the authors explore issues such as informed consent and refusal, decision making and decisional capacity, truth telling, decision-making concerns of minors, end-of-life issues, palliation, justice in and access to health care services, and organizational ethics. They offer sample policies and procedures, draft guidelines and protocols, and key legal cases. Providing both a strong theoretical foundation and practical applications, this handbook will be essential reading for every member of a health care ethics committee. (shrink)
Psychiatry presents a unique array of difficult ethical questions. However, a major challenge is to approach psychiatry in a way that does justice to the real ethical issues. Recently there has been a growing body of research in empirical psychiatric ethics, and an increased interest in how empirical and philosophical methods can be combined. Empirical Ethics in Psychiatry demonstrates how ethics can engage more closely with the reality of psychiatric practice and shows how empirical methodologies from the social sciences (...) can help foster this link. -/- The book is divided into two sections. In the first section there are discussions of the possibility of empirical ethics from a theoretical standpoint and an overview of the history of empirical medical ethics in general. The second, larger section is made up of chapters, discussing specific research projects in empirical psychiatric ethics. The contributors reflect on their choice of method: how and why they combine empirical and philosophical work, and how the two approaches relate to each other. The chapters in the second part thus have two purposes. The first is to present examples of empirical ethics in psychiatry; the second is to reflect on the way in which empirical research can support ethical analysis. -/- Empirical Ethics in Psychiatry is a unique contribution to bioethics and will be fascinating reading for all those working within the field, as well as mental health care professionals. (shrink)
Bioethics and the stages on life's way -- Bioethical challenges in the new millennium -- The covenantal aspect of Christian marriage -- The use and abuse of human embryos -- The sacredness of newborn life -- On addictions and family systems -- The hope of glory : from a physical to a spiritual body -- Care in the final stage of life.
Bioethics as politics -- Bioethics and the politics of expectations -- Engendering consent : bioethics and biobanks -- Missing the big picture : bioethics and stem cell research -- Testing times : bioethics and "do-it-yourself" genetics -- Governing uncertainty : the politics of nanoethics -- Beyond bioethics.
Background There has been debate on whether a global or unified field of bioethics exists. If bioethics is a unified global field, or at the very least a closely shared way of thinking, then we should expect bioethicists to behave the same way in their academic activities anywhere in the world. This paper investigates whether there is a 'global bioethics' in the sense of a unified academic community. Methods To address this question, we study the web-linking patterns of bioethics institutions, (...) the citation patterns of bioethics papers and the buying patterns of bioethics books. Results All three analyses indicate that there are geographical and institutional differences in the academic behavior of bioethicists and bioethics institutions. Conclusion These exploratory studies support the position that there is no unified global field of bioethics. This is a problem if the only reason is parochialism. But these regional differences are probably of less concern if one notices that bioethics comes in many not always mutually understandable dialects. (shrink)
Background The increase in empirical methods of research in bioethics over the last two decades is typically perceived as a welcomed broadening of the discipline, with increased integration of social and life scientists into the field and ethics consultants into the clinical setting, however it also represents a loss of confidence in the typical normative and analytic methods of bioethics. Discussion The recent incipiency of "Evidence-Based Ethics" attests to this phenomenon and should be rejected as a solution to the current (...) ambivalence toward the normative resolution of moral problems in a pluralistic society. While "evidence-based" is typically read in medicine and other life and social sciences as the empirically-adequate standard of reasonable practice and a means for increasing certainty, I propose that the evidence-based movement in fact gains consensus by displacing normative discourse with aggregate or statistically-derived empirical evidence as the "bottom line". Therefore, along with wavering on the fact/value distinction, evidence-based ethics threatens bioethics' normative mandate. The appeal of the evidence-based approach is that it offers a means of negotiating the demands of moral pluralism. Rather than appealing to explicit values that are likely not shared by all, "the evidence" is proposed to adjudicate between competing claims. Quantified measures are notably more "neutral" and democratic than liberal markers like "species normal functioning". Yet the positivist notion that claims stand or fall in light of the evidence is untenable; furthermore, the legacy of positivism entails the quieting of empirically non-verifiable (or at least non-falsifiable) considerations like moral claims and judgments. As a result, evidence-based ethics proposes to operate with the implicit normativity that accompanies the production and presentation of all biomedical and scientific facts unchecked. Summary The "empirical turn" in bioethics signals a need for reconsideration of the methods used for moral evaluation and resolution, however the options should not include obscuring normative content by seemingly neutral technical measure. (shrink)
Benefiting from a widely recognised experience of the field of bioethics, the Council of Europe which represents all the democratic countries of Europe, has embarked on the ambitious task of drafting a European Convention on bioethics. The purpose of this text is to set out fundamental values, such as respect for human dignity, free informed consent and non-commercialisation of the human body. In addition to this task, protocols will provide specific standards for the different fields concerned with the application of (...) biomedical sciences. The convention and the first two protocols (human experiments and organ transplants) are due to be ready for signature by mid 1994. (shrink)
Why mediation? -- What makes bioethics mediation unique? -- Before you begin a bioethics mediation program -- The stages of bioethics mediation -- Techniques for mediating bioethics disputes -- How to write a bioethics mediation chart note -- Mediation with a competent patient : Mr. Samuels's case -- Mediation with a dysfunctional family : Mrs. Bates's case -- A complex mediation with a large and involved family : Mrs. Leonari's case -- Discharge planning for a dying patient : a role-play (...) -- An at-risk pregnancy : a role-play -- HIV and postsurgical complications in the ICU : a role-play -- Treating the dying adolescent : a role-play -- She didn't mean it : a role-play -- Don't tell mama : a role-play -- An at-risk pregnancy : a role-play transcript -- HIV and postsurgical complications in the ICU : a role-play transcript -- She didn't mean it: a role-play transcript -- Don't tell mama : a role-play transcript. (shrink)
Edited by four leading members of the new generation of medical and healthcare ethicists working in the UK, respected worldwide for their work in medical ethics, Principles of Health Care Ethics, Second Edition_is a standard resource for students, professionals, and academics wishing to understand current and future issues in healthcare ethics. With a distinguished international panel of contributors working at the leading edge of academia, this volume presents a comprehensive guide to the field, with state of the art introductions (...) to the wide range of topics in modern healthcare ethics, from consent to human rights, from utilitarianism to feminism, from the doctor-patient relationship to xenotransplantation. This volume is the Second Edition of the highly successful work edited by Professor Raanan Gillon, Emeritus Professor of Medical Ethics at Imperial College London and former editor of the Journal of Medical Ethics, the leading journal in this field. Developments from the First Edition include:_ The focus on ‘Four Principles Method’ is relaxed to cover more different methods in health care ethics. More material on new medical technologies is included, the coverage of issues on the doctor/patient relationship is expanded, and material on ethics and public health is brought together into a new section. (shrink)
Are there universal ethical principles that should govern the conduct of medicine and research worldwide? -- Is it morally acceptable to buy and sell organs for human transplantation? -- Were it physically safe, would human reproductive cloning be acceptable? -- Is the deliberately induced abortion of a human pregnancy ethically justifiable? -- Is it ethical to patent or copyright genes, embryos, or their parts? -- Should minors have the right to refuse treatment, even when against the will of their parents (...) or guardians? -- Is physician-assisted suicide ever ethical? -- Should stem cell research utilizing embryonic tissue be conducted? -- Should we prohibit the use of chimpanzees and other great apes in biomedical research? -- Should the United States of America adopt universal health care? -- Is there a legitimate place for human genetic enhancement? -- Can there be agreement as to what constitutes human death? -- Is there ever a circumstance in which a doctor may withhold information? -- Should in vitro fertilization be an option for a woman? -- Are international clinical trials exploitative? (shrink)
The Blackwell Guide to Medical Ethics is a guide to the complex literature written on the increasingly dense topic of ethics in relation to the new technologies of medicine. Examines the key ethical issues and debates which have resulted from the rapid advances in biomedical technology Brings together the leading scholars from a wide range of disciplines, including philosophy, medicine, theology and law, to discuss these issues Tackles such topics as ending life, patient choice, selling body parts, resourcing (...) and confidentiality Organized with a coherent structure that differentiates between the decisions of individuals and those of social policy. (shrink)
Addresses the issues at the heart of international medicine and social responsibility. A number of international declarations have proclaimed that health care is a fundamental human right. But if we accept this broad commitment, how should we concretely define the state’s responsibility for the health of its citizens? Although there is growing debate over this issue, there are few books for general readers that provide engaging accounts of critical incidents, practices, and ideas in the field of human rights, health (...) care, and medicine. Included in the book are case studies of such issues as AIDS among orphans in Romania, organ trafficking, prison conditions, health care rationing, medical research in the third world, and South Africa’s constitutionally guaranteed right of access to health care. It uses these topics to address themes of protection of vulnerable populations, equity and fairness in delivering competent medical care, informed consent and the free flow of information, and state responsibility for ensuring physical, mental, and social well-being. (shrink)
Many recent articles argue that participants who seroconvert during HIV prevention trials deserve treatment when they develop AIDS, and there is a general consensus that the participants in HIV/AIDS treatment trials should have continuing post-trial access. As a result, the primary concern of many ethicists and activists has shifted from justifying an obligation to treat trial participants, to working out mechanisms through which treatment could be provided. In this paper I argue that this shift frequently conceals an important assumption: that (...) if there is an obligation to supply treatment, then any party who could provide it may be prevailed upon to discharge the obligation. This assumption is false. The reasons why trial participants should get ART affect who has the duty to provide it. We should not burden governments with the obligations of sponsors, nor researchers with the obligations of the international community. And we should not deprive a group of treatment because their need is less salient than that of research participants. Insisting otherwise may lead to people being wrongfully deprived of access to antiretrovirals. (shrink)
The increase in empirical methods of research in bioethics over the last two decades is typically perceived as a welcomed broadening of the discipline, with increased integration of social and life scientists into the field and ethics consultants into the clinical setting, however it also represents a loss of confidence in the typical normative and analytic methods of bioethics.
BackgroundPromoting the social value of global health research undertaken in resource poor settings has become a key concern in global research ethics. The consideration for benefit sharing, which concerns the elucidation of what if anything, is owed to participants, their communities and host nations that take part in such research, and the obligations of researchers involved, is one of the main strategies used for promoting social value of research. In the last decade however, there has been intense debate within academic (...) bioethics literature seeking to define the benefits, the beneficiaries, and the scope of obligations for providing these benefits. Although this debate may be indicative of willingness at the international level to engage with the responsibilities of researchers involved in global health research, it remains unclear which forms of benefits or beneficiaries should be considered. International and local research ethics guidelines are reviewed here to delineate the guidance they provide.MethodsWe reviewed documents selected from the international compilation of research ethics guidelines by the Office for Human Research Protections under the US Department of Health and Human Services.ResultsAccess to interventions being researched, the provision of unavailable health care, capacity building for individuals and institutions, support to health care systems and access to medical and public health interventions proven effective, are the commonly recommended forms of benefits. The beneficiaries are volunteers, disease or illness affected communities and the population in general. Interestingly however, there is a divide between "global opinion" and the views of particular countries within resource poor settings as made explicit by differences in emphasis regarding the potential benefits and the beneficiaries.ConclusionAlthough in theory benefit sharing is widely accepted as one of the means for promoting the social value of international collaborative health research, there is less agreement amongst major guidelines on the specific responsibilities of researchers over what is ethical in promoting the social value of research. Lack of consensus might have practical implications for efforts aimed at enhancing the social value of global health research undertaken in resource poor settings. Further developments in global research ethics require more reflection, paying attention to the practical realities of implementing the ethical principles in real world context. (shrink)
Introduction: human rights in healthcare -- A right to treatment? the allocation of resouces in the National Health Service -- Ensuring quality healthcare: an issue of rights or duties? -- Autonomy and consent in medical treatment -- Treating incompetent patients: beneficence, welfare and rights -- Medical confidentiality and the right to privacy -- Property right in the body -- Medically assisted conception and a right to reproduce? -- Termination of pregnancy: a conflict of rights -- Pregnancy and freedom of choice (...) -- The right to life at the end of life -- The law and ethics of assisted dying: is there a right to die? (shrink)