Chapter

Discovering informed consent: a case study on the practices of informed consent to tissue donation in Austria<sup>1</sup>

Milena D. Bister

in Human Tissue Research

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780199587551
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191725630 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587551.003.0017
Discovering informed consent: a case study on the practices of informed consent to tissue donation in Austria1

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This chapter presents an empirical case study on informed consent procedures for medical research on leftovers from surgery in Austria. It suggests a way to understand informed consent as a ‘boundary object’ between medical professionals and patient-donors. As such, informed consent might be better understood as an appropriate tool to satisfy divergent interests in the medical encounter than as a tool for patients' empowerment. It is argued that different motives for both obtaining and giving consent account for the contemporary unchallenged practice of informed consent. This can be seen as a contribution to the ongoing interdisciplinary analysis regarding the question of how to deal with informed consent in the area of tissue research and banking in the European Union and its associated countries.

Keywords: informed consent; tissue donation; tissue research; boundary object; patient empowerment

Chapter.  5248 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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