Global health ethics

Developing guidelines for public health surveillance

Medical records

Background

Surveillance is one of the most fundamental activities of public health, involving different areas andpractices such as non-communicable disease registers, outbreak investigations, and health systems research. Public health surveillance raises multiple ethical issues concerning, among others, the use/non-use of informed consent or the provision/non-provision of standards of care.

WHO's work

In 2014 WHO launched a project to develop WHO Guidelines on Ethical Issues in Public Health Surveillance, and for this purpose established an international Guideline Development Group.

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