New study on children’s rights in biomedicine


The Council of Europe’s Committee on Bioethics (DH-BIO) just published a report identifying areas in science and biomedicine that could affect children’s rights. The report is written by three medical lawyers from Uppsala University.

The report demonstrates how scientific risks and uncertainties can affect the rights of children in a variety of ways: from birth through adolescence. The report is written by Kavot Zillén, Jameson Garland and Santa Slokenberga. They focus on how scientific advances and practices that involve risk reach children in biomedicine, both in health care practice or other settings.  The report shows a need for systemic, continuous and multidisciplinary oversight.

Santa Slokenberga, LLD
Santa Slokenberga, LLD, is one of the authors

According to Santa Slokenberga and her colleagues, these matters cannot be left to biomedical expertise alone.  There is a need for vigilant oversight from human rights authorities and scholars that understand these issues.

The study will be used to analyse and assess the relevance of existing international legal instruments, and define further action at the intergovernmental level if necessary. The work will also be part of the preparation for an international conference marking 20th anniversary of the Oviedo Convention on 24-25 October 2017. It is also integral part of the activities in the Council of Europes Strategy for the Rights of the Child (2016-2021).

Read report: The Rights of Children in Biomedicine: challenges posed by scientific advances and uncertainties

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