American Journal of Bioethics 21 (4):80-83 (2021)

Hugh Desmond
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
The success of precision medicine depends on obtaining large amounts of information about at-risk populations. However, getting consent is often difficult. Why? In this commentary I point to the differentials in social status involved. These differentials are inevitable once personal information is surrendered, but are particularly intense when the studied populations are socioeconomically or socioculturally disadvantaged and/or ethnically stigmatized groups. I suggest how the deep distrust of the latter groups can be partially justified as a lack of confidence that their core values or interests will sufficiently be taken into account. Hence, the ethical challenge here lies not in avoiding status differentials, but in dealing with them appropriately. Scientists should not assume trust from others but adopt a norm of “demonstrating trustworthiness”.
Keywords Precision medicine  Consent  Status  Social Epistemology  Research ethics  Trust
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/15265161.2021.1891345
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Service and Status Competition May Help Explain Perceived Ethical Acceptability.Hugh Desmond - 2020 - American Journal of Bioethics Neuroscience 11 (4):258-260.

View all 7 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Towards Precision Medicine; a New Biomedical Cosmology.M. W. Vegter - 2018 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 21 (4):443-456.
Data Collection, EHRs, and Poverty Determinations.Craig Konnoth - 2018 - Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 46 (3):622-628.
The Imaginary of Precision Public Health.Martha Kenney & Laura Mamo - 2020 - Medical Humanities 46 (3):192-203.


Added to PP index

Total views
48 ( #234,046 of 2,499,038 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
13 ( #59,199 of 2,499,038 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes