Critical issues on informed consent in Africa

Poiesis and Praxis 6 (1-2):109-123 (2008)
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Biomedical research has made tremendous advances during the last decade in improving human health and well being. In spite of these advances, research has encountered serious emerging challenges as it moves across boarders and confronts different societies with different cultural practices, beliefs, moral thoughts and different values. A pervasive and perplexing issue affecting the current advances in research is the perception that research might end up exploiting populations unless it is conducted in the context of a strong ethical framework. Furthermore, informed consent has increasingly become a thorny area for researchers when considering what should be done when introducing the process into a community, especially if the process might destroy the traditional value system and customs of the community. In this paper, I argue that community consent is an unethical process which should be subverted for community dialogue and community education in research in Africa



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