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Title:Ethical Aspects of Human Subject Research in Biomedicine (Medical Ethic)
Author(s):Fletcher, David Bruce
Department / Program:Philosophy
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Abstract:This dissertation attempts to provide grounds for subjecting the practice of human subject research (HSR) to ethical scrutiny, thereby supporting the need for regulative intervention of some sort, and then attempts to specify how HSR can meet ethical requirements. The study examines the areas in which HSR is ethically sensitive in having a considerable likelihood of leading to ethical abuse or neglect. HSR can compromise the liberty or welfare of subjects and can interfere with the relationship between clinicians and patients.
Considerable attention is given to the nature of liberty and the ways in which this value can be compromised in HSR, as well as to the ethical aspects involved in subjecting persons to risk. The dissertation identifies from the literature and examines several attempts to overcome the ethical problems with HSR without making an ethical appeal to the consent of subjects, most notably a utilitarian argument. Ethically acceptable research on persons will have such features as the following: it will be designed to promote human benefit, have a favorable likelihood of success, and have a positive balance of benefits to risks; it must be conducted by competent professionals taking care of the interests of subjects and enabling them to make well-informed decisions to participate; it will enlist subjects with their free consent based on a knowledge of risks and discomforts of the research as well as the purposes to be achieved, and these will not be coerced, manipulated, or exploited; and efforts must be made to provide a maximum amount of freedom for participants under the protocol. The ethical acceptability admits of degrees; research is more acceptable as the subjects have a wider range of options surrounding their decision to participate, as there is a higher ration of benefit to risk, as their selection is based on a just distribution of burdens in society, and as they have personal interest in the purposes of research. The findings of the dissertation are applied to research on prison populations and to the use of proxy consent for research on people incapable of consent, especially children.
Issue Date:1984
Description:252 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1984.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8409769
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-16
Date Deposited:1984

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