On January 31st the i-CONSENT Consortium will gather in Rome to provide an overview of main findings of i-CONSENT Project and to discuss comments elaborated by IBC members. The Consortium will also identify any gap in i-CONSENT work and suggest actions to improve strategies aimed at increasing participation of human subjects from multicultural backgrounds in clinical trials.
UNESCO Chair Director, Prof. Alberto Garcia will analyze Informed Consent from a multicultural and interreligious perspective.
Expected participants from UNESCO IBC and Università degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata” :
Stefano Semplici Università degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata”
Johannes JM van Delden UNESCO IBC
Dafna Feinholz UNESCO IBC
Derrick Aarons UNESCO IBC
Pamela Andanda UNESCO IBC
Dirceu Bartolomeu Greco UNESCO IBC
Richard Magnus UNESCO IBC
Federico Jääskeläinen Montalvo UNESCO IBC
Evariste Likinda UNESCO IBC
Marie-Genevieve Pinsart UNESCO IBC
Lizbeth Sagols Sales UNESCO IBC
Delia Maria Sanchez Varela UNESCO IBC
Yuthavong Yongyuth UNESCO IBC
Paulina Tindana UNESCO IBC
On October 10th and November 12nd, Prof. Alberto Garcia, Director of UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights, attended LUMSA’s venues in Rome and Palermo to give a presentation on the details of the European project of i-CONSENT, as well as to explain the intricacies that go along the practical and theoretical notion of informed consent (IC) in clinical research.
On a theoretical level, Prof. Garcia highlighted the importance of taking into consideration the factors of gender, age and cultural and religious background if one’s approach to constitute successful patterns of informed consent is to be effective. Thinking about these vulnerability factors will help consolidate i-CONSENT as a person-centered project, as it considers how the above mentioned factors change the way in which patients understand information and communicate with others.
He also approached the tensions that arise from a conceptualization of IC that depends on a notion of individual autonomy that is not shared by all cultures and religions: while western culture tends to give importance to the individual and his or her rights, eastern traditions use to put more weight on community and the duties that derive from it. Thinking about how each major religious tradition (namely Buddhism, Confucianism, Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism and Islam) views IC in accordance to their doctrine and traditions will help to outline defined goals for the effectiveness of i-CONSENT.
Prof. Garcia went on to talk about the practical expected outcomes of the project: i-CONSENT intends to be beneficial both for patients and researchers, in a way that will benefit society as a whole. In its person-centered approach it will develop different tests and will aim to involve different physicians in accordance to the profile of the patient, effectively incorporating its principles with their presence on regulatory bodies and ethics groups. The overall goal, according to Prof. Garcia, is to increase the standards of clinical research by making IC form and the whole process more comprehensive and mindful of the patient’s particularities.
This October, Prof. Alberto Garcia, Director of the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights, will participate in the Workshop “Vaccines, Anti-Vaccination Movements and Communication (Fake News)” within the project COMPARE that has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No. 643476. The panel is multidisciplinary and multi-sectoral precisely because the meeting’s objective is not to discuss vaccines but trying to understand why citizens often do believe in false myths or fake news. The first day will be dedicated to the analysis of the communication among politicians, patients and journalists, while the second day will be focused on the analysis of the “correlation” that exists between vaccines and autism. In this context Prof. Alberto Garcia will have the possibility to share the results of the research on vaccines and guidelines of Informed Consent carried out during the year through the i-Consent project within the Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No 741856. Read the program by clicking on this link.
The UNESCO Chair in Bioethics and Human Rights hold its 6th international Bioethics, multiculturalism and religion workshop to discuss issues of informed consent and clinical research on February 21-23. As part of the i-Consent consortium (a project funded by the European Union – Horizon 2020), the ethical reflections of the workshop focused on the multicultural and interdisciplinary dimension of the ethical requirements of informed consent applied to transnational / clinical research and vaccination.