Free and informed consent as a core principle of the protection of human rights in the field of biomedicine

The international conference “Free and informed consent as a core principle of the protection of human rights in the field of biomedicine” was held on December 8, 2017 in Minsk. The conference was organized by the Bioethics Unit of the Council of Europe in cooperation with the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Belarus with the support of the Council of Europe Information Point in Minsk.

Taking into account the increasing possibility of intervention into human life, the aim of the event was to familiarize both healthcare professionals and lawyers with the basic principles of bioethics, one of which is the principle of free and informed consent to intervention in the field of health.

The application of this principle in specific areas of biomedicine, such as clinical practice, biomedical research, organ and tissue donation, as well as ethical and legal aspects of application of this principle were considered within the framework of the conference.

The issues such as the principle of free and informed consent in the European Court of Human Rights practice, implementation of the principle of free and informed consent to medical intervention, free and informed consent in the field of biomedical research and in the sphere of organ and tissue transplantation were discussed by the participants.

Besides that, interventions were made on the constitutional framework of human rights protection in the field of biomedicine, implementation of the principle of free and informed consent in healthcare in Belarus, informed consent in the sphere of paediatric surgery, comparison of medical and legal practices in the Federal Republic of Germany and in the Republic of Belarus, free and informed consent in the sphere of oncology and transplantology in the Republic of Belarus.

More information about the Council of Europe activities in the field of bioethics can be found on the web-site https://www.coe.int/en/web/bioethics/home