Dialogue on genomic medicine is important because it helps to address issues which relate to individuals and societies. For example, access to genomic testing and the consent to the storage of (individual) genomic data can have implications for healthcare, such as access to health services. Dialogue helps to foster understanding and appreciation of the concepts of altruism and solidarity as well as the principle of reciprocity. In agreeing to share genetic information, there are corresponding obligations on the part of researchers, healthcare professionals and the state to provide inter alia information to data donors, robust governance mechanisms and equitable access to the treatments developed.
Organising a seminar on relevant legislation and good practices with regard to early intervention on intersex children (hereinafter - Seminar) is an action foreseen by the Strategic Action Plan on Human Rights and Technologies in Biomedicine (2020-2025), adopted by the Committee on Bioethics (DH-BIO) in 2019. The objective of this action is safeguarding children’s rights in relation to medical practices which have future or long-term implications for them.
Technological innovation often creates its own dynamic. Major technological breakthroughs in fields such as artificial intelligence, genome editing, and neurotechnology have the potential to advance biomedicine and healthcare. However, uncertainty exists about the impact and direction of these developments. The Council of Europe Strategic Action Plan on Human Rights and Technologies in Biomedicine (2020-2025) (SAP), adopted by the Committee on Bioethics (DH-BIO) stands an objective of embedding human rights in the development of technologies which have an application in the field of biomedicine. This Round Table gathers international experts from academia, industry and policy to discuss human rights issues raised by the applications of neurotechnologies.
The objective of the webinar will be to share national experiences of public debate during the COVID-19 pandemic and to consider what have we learned. It will reflect on the utility of public debate for better preparedness regarding future public health crises. Key questions to address are:
- What role has public debate played in COVID19 and what have we learned (i.e. what worked well, what worked less well)?
- Preparedness for future public health crises – how does/should public debate feature in addressing future health challenges?
Invited experts include:
- Espen Nakstad, Assistant Director, Directorate for Health and Social Affairs, Norway
- Joacim Rocklöv, Professor, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Umeå University, Sweden
- Claudia Chwalisz, Innovative Citizen Participation Lead, OECD
- Diane Beddoes, Director, Deliberate Thinking, UK (moderator)
On 30 June 2020, in the framework of the launching of the Strategic Action Plan on Human Rights and Technologies in Biomedicine (2020-2025) organised under the auspices of the Greek chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers, the Council of Europe Committee on Bioethics (DH-BIO) held a webinar on promoting health literacy in the context of a pandemic: relevance and challenges.
Invited experts :
- Prof. Karine Lefeuvre, Vice-President, National Ethical Consultative Committee for life sciences and health (France)
- Dr Leena Paakkari, Research Center for Health Promotion, University of Jyväskylä (Finland)
On 26 June 2020, in the framework of the launching of the Strategic Action Plan on Human Rights and Technologies in Biomedicine (2020-2025) organised under the auspices of the Greek chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers, the Council of Europe Committee on Bioethics (DH-BIO) held a webinar on COVID-19 testing - key human rights and ethical concerns.
Invited experts :
- Dr Ross Upshur, Co-Chair, WHO Working group on Ethics and Covid-19 (Canada)
- Prof. Dominique Sprumont, Health Law Institute, University of Neuchatel (Switzerland)
Know more about bioethics - safegarding Human Rights in Biomedicine. What are the challenges for human beings posed by developments in biomedicine and how do they affect our human rights?
HELP course on key human rights principles in biomedicine presented during the 7th European Conference of Health Law at dedicated workshop
Legal assessment of the Law of the Republic of Belarus No. 28-З on transplantation of human organs and tissues of 4 March 1997 vis-à-vis its compliance with the Council of Europe standards will be conducted by the leading international experts
Ethical issues raised by gene editing technologies, protection of the elderly, and the importance of public debate highlighted by the Council of Europe in EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF).
2017 marked the 20th anniversary of the Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine (Oviedo Convention). On this occasion an international conference was held on 24-25 October 2017, in Strasbourg, under the auspices of the Czech Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers
- Conference speakers
- Rapporteur report
- Publications (in Russian): Mr H-J Behrens' interview, Dr L Gabbasova's interview, Prof. B Knoppers' article, Mrs L Lwoff's interview, Dr O Quintana's article
The Conference is being jointly organised by the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation, the Russian State University of Justice under the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation and the Bioethics Unit of the Council of Europe. The main focus will be on the key principle of human rights’ protection enshrined both in the Constitution of the Russian Federation and in the Oviedo Convention.
On 12 April, a session on the protection of human rights in the biomedical field (bioethics) took place during the short-term courses "Implementation of the international and constitutional guarantees of human rights in Russian law and law enforcement practice", which were jointly organised by the European Studies Institute of the MGIMO University and the Council of Europe, in Moscow on 10-14 April 2017.
Council of Europe and the Ministry of Health of Belarus held a seminar on bioethics for representatives of executive, legislative and judicial authorities, as well as professionals in the legal and health field. The seminar was held in the framework of the implementation of the Council of Europe Action plan for Belarus 2016-2017.
A Seminar “International Case-Law and Bioethics: Insight and Foresight” took place on 5 December 2016 in Strasbourg under the auspices of the Cypriot Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe.
The Council of Europe organised with the Turkish authorities the End-of-Life Care Symposium in the framework of the Council of Europe cooperation activities.
At an international conference organised by the Council of Europe and the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation, ethical, legal and health professionals, together with representatives of relevant authorities, agreed on the need for more experience-sharing, co-operation and public dialogue to ensure better protection of human rights in the biomedical field. The conference was part of the celebrations of the 20th anniversary of Russia’s membership of the Council of Europe.
- Video of the Conference
- Concluding remarks by Mr Philippe Boillat, Director General, DGI