What Egyptians think. Knowledge, attitude, and opinions of Egyptian patients towards biobanking issues

BMC Medical Ethics 20 (1):1-10 (2019)
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Abstract

Biobanking is a relatively new concept in Egypt. Building a good relationship with different stakeholders is essential for the social sustainability of biobanks. To establish this relationship, it is necessary to assess the attitude of different groups towards this concept. The objective of this work is to assess the knowledge, attitude, and opinions of Egyptian patients towards biobanking issues. We designed a structured survey to be administered to patients coming to the outpatient clinics in 3 university hospitals in Egypt. The survey included questions estimating the level of knowledge about the term “Biobank”, together with questions about the attitudes and opinions about related issues. Two hundred and fifty-nine patients participated in the survey. Eighty-one percent of participants reported that they never heard about the term before. About 85% expressed that they would be willing to donate their samples for research and about 87% thought that sample donation did not contradict their religious beliefs. Fifty eight percent were willing to participate in a genetic research project, 27.8% supported sharing their sample with pharmaceutical companies, and 32.4% agreed to share their samples with institutions abroad. Although there is limited knowledge about biobanking among Egyptian patients, many had a positive attitude towards sample donation and didn’t show religious concerns against it. However, they showed concerns regarding participation in genetic research and with sharing their samples across borders or with pharmaceutical companies. Public education about biobanking is possible, taking into consideration the specific cultural and legal framework in Egypt.

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