Ethical Challenges in Short-Term Global Health Training

CASE 10: Understanding Informed Consent
Matthew DeCamp, Joce Rodriguez , Gene Richardson, Michele Barry, Jeremy Sugarman

Short-term training programs abroad frequently involve research, either as the primary focus of the program or as part of a service project. Conducting research in another country can raise a range of ethical issues.

One of the most important issues a trainee might face arises during the process of informed consent for research. Although widely accepted as a requirement of ethical research, communities around the world have a diverse range of perspectives on informed consent and its ethical justification that rests in respecting individual autonomy.

In this case, we will consider some, though not all, of the challenges trainees, their sending institutions, and host sites, might face during the informed consent process for research.

Let’s consider the following vignette.

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© Stanford University Center for Global Health and the Johns Hopkins University Berman Institute of Bioethics.

Project funding provided by Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF)