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Ethical Research Involving Children

Are children vulnerable in research?

Wright, K. (2015). Are children vulnerable in research? Asian Bioethics Review, 7(2), pp. 201-213.

The Nuffield Council on Bioethics’ 2015 report, Children and Clinical Research: Ethical Issues, explores how ethical anxieties with respect to the involvement of children and young people in clinical research can be managed and mitigated with the help of children, young people and parents themselves. In so doing, the report challenges many of the assumptions that underpin the classification of children and young people as necessarily constituting a “vulnerable group”, arguing that vulnerability is primarily present in situations, rather than in individuals, and that much can be done to design worthwhile research in ways that minimise the risk of individual children and young people being placed in a vulnerable situation. Partnership between researchers and children, young people and their families is essential, not only at the point of recruitment to a study, but also much earlier in the development stages of research studies.

Abstract © Asian Bioethics Review 2015.

This article is part of a special issue on this topic. There are a number of other relevant articles, see the Publisher’s Link below to view the Table of Contents.

Publisher’s Link

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