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Nicole Marie D.


Section 1B

1. What are the origins of the code/declaration/convention?

The issue on human experimentation started out during the time of World War II (19391945), were prisoners of wars are tortured as a form of human experimentation. The most popular tortures for human experimentation were the unit 731 of Japan and the Nazis concentration camp in Germany. This human experimentation was discovered at the end of the WWII, and the most investigated was the Nazis concentration camp. Because of the human tortures that the Nazis did, a Nuremberg Trial was done during November 20, 1945 to October 1, 1946. This trial aims to investigate the 21 doctors who participated in the said experimentation. And because of this trail, Nuremberg Code was formulated to set an ethical standard on human experimentation. In 1949 the World Medical association formulated the Declaration of Geneva that pertains to responsibilities of the physicians to their patient with the basis of the Hippocratic Oath. And in June 1953, the World Medical Associated made a new declaration during their 18th assembly in Helsinki, Finland which is the Declaration of Helsinki which involves the ethical principles that pertain to human experimentation. This declaration has been revised three times form 1975-1989. Amended by the 29th World Medical Assembly, Tokyo, Japan, October 1975, 35th World Medical Assembly, Venice, Italy, October 1983; and the 41st World Medical Assembly, Hong Kong, September 1989 from World Medical Association.

2. If you had to pick two main principles in the document, which two would you pick as the most significant? Why? (What is their moral force?)

Principle number II under the Basic Principle which states that the experimental procedure to be conducted on the human subject should be thoroughly planned and executed and should only be conducted with a special committee who would follow all the protocols involved with guidance and consideration in accordance to the law in which ever country the experiment is done. This is significant for me because the subject involved is a human being and when we talk about human we always associate it with dignity and morality. So for the human subject experimentation, I guess it is just proper to conduct an experiment that is thoroughly thought of and any significant risks involved should already be anticipated so that proper adjustments will be addressed properly. I would associate this with the issue on human cloning, this experimentation is not yet stable to be conducted legally on human subject that is why human cloning is not yet been approved, and thus this should be an example that if there is a significant risk involves, then no experimentation should occur. The moral force of this principle is the dignity and morality of the human being involved in the experiment. Base on what I learned in bioethics, there are a lot human experiments that are conducted before like for example the tortures that has been done with the prisoners of war. This kind of experimentation destroys the morality and dignity of the human subject and I think this principle tries to avoid these things to happen again. By ensuring that that human subject will be involved with an experiment that is well executed, protocols to be followed and no significant risks involved. Most importantly is that the people who would conduct the experiment is well knowledgeable and knows how to follow the guidelines involve.

Second, Principle 3 under Non-Therapeutic Biomedical Research Involving Human Subjects (Non-Clinical Biomedical Research) of the principle in which it states that if during the course of the experimentation, should there be any risks or potential harm to the human subject in

accordance with the judgment of the researchers and the investigating team, then the experiment should be stopped. In relation to what I stated on Principle 2, again we are dealing with a life of a human being. The researchers involved should always take in to consideration the dignity, morality and most especially the safety of the human subject. This is for me significant because it protects the right of the human subject from any possible threat to his/her life. By having this principle, the morality of the human subject is respected and not violated. Ethical principles are being followed as to respect to human life and by having this principle, people involved is not just treated as a subject for the experiment but as a human being that has a rights and principles. Researchers and investigating team should not only think for the best result of their experimentation, but they should also put into consideration the human subject that is involved in their experiment. The moral force for me is again the dignity and morality of the human subject. It is very immoral to precede with the course of the experiment even thou there is potential harm to the human subject. The researcher and investigating team should be able to think logically and morally and to have a proper judgment to stop the experiment when it is already crucial to the life and health of the human subject.

3. What is the motive of the code/convention/declaration? (e.g. professional dignity, public welfare, moral probity, etc.?). Justify your choice of motive(s).

The main core of the declaration of Helsinki is to set the ethical foundation in conducting human experimentation, be it clinical trial or non-clinical biomedical research. That is why I chose this two motives, morality and safety protection of the human subject and the professional dignity in accordance with the Hippocratic Oath. Ethical principles that are set to be followed by the physicians who will conduct the human experiment, by instilling in their practice the

Hippocratic oath and the rights of the human subject pertaining to their morality in the human experimentation. Human experimentation is not a joke that is why the morality and safety of human subject must always be the first priority of the physician who will do the experiment.


1. Humanrights.com[Internet]. A Brief History of Human Rights;[cited 2012 August 27]. Available from http://www.humanrights.com/what-are-human-rights/briefhistory/declaration-of-human-rights.html 2. WMA.net[Internet]. WMA Declaration of Helsinki - Ethical Principles for Medical Research Involving Human Subjects;[cited 2012 August 27]. Available from http://www.wma.net/en/30publications/10policies/b3/