Relevant Information and Informed Consent in Research: In Defense of the Subjective Standard of Disclosure

Science and Engineering Ethics 23 (1):215-225 (2017)
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Abstract
In this article, we seek to contribute to the debate on the requirement of disclosure in the context of informed consent for research. We defend the subjective standard of disclosure and describe ways to implement this standard in research practice. We claim that the researcher should make an effort to find out what kinds of information are likely to be relevant for those consenting to research. This invites researchers to take empirical survey information seriously, attempt to understand the cultural context, talk to patients to be better able to understand what can be potentially different concerns and interests prevalent in the target population. The subjective standard of disclosure should be seen as a moral ideal that perhaps can never be perfectly implemented but still can and should be used as a normative ideal guiding research practice. In the light of these discussions, we call for more empirical research on what considerations are likely to be perceived as relevant by potential research participants recruited from different socio-economic and cultural groups.
Keywords Informed consent  Relevant information  Research ethics  Manipulation  Disclosure
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DOI 10.1007/s11948-016-9755-4
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Principles of Biomedical Ethics.Tom L. Beauchamp - 1979 - Oxford University Press.
Autonomy and Trust in Bioethics.Onora O'Neill - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.

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