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Does Consent Bias Research?

Does Consent Bias Research? Researchers increasingly rely on large data sets of health information, often linked with biological specimens. In recent years, the argument has been made that obtaining informed consent for conducting records-based research is unduly burdensome and results in “consent bias.” As a type of selection bias, consent bias is said to exist when the group giving researchers access to their data differs from the group denying access. Therefore, to promote socially beneficial research, it is argued that consent should be unnecessary. After analyzing the biostatistics evidence and bioethics arguments, the article concludes that (1) claims about the amount of consent bias are overstated; (2) commonly used statistical methods usually can account for consent bias; and (3) any residual effects of consent bias are below an acceptable level of imprecision and constitute a reasonable social cost for conducting ethically responsible research. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Journal of Bioethics Taylor & Francis

Does Consent Bias Research?

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References (52)

Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
Copyright Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
ISSN
1536-0075
eISSN
1526-5161
DOI
10.1080/15265161.2013.767955
pmid
23514393
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Researchers increasingly rely on large data sets of health information, often linked with biological specimens. In recent years, the argument has been made that obtaining informed consent for conducting records-based research is unduly burdensome and results in “consent bias.” As a type of selection bias, consent bias is said to exist when the group giving researchers access to their data differs from the group denying access. Therefore, to promote socially beneficial research, it is argued that consent should be unnecessary. After analyzing the biostatistics evidence and bioethics arguments, the article concludes that (1) claims about the amount of consent bias are overstated; (2) commonly used statistical methods usually can account for consent bias; and (3) any residual effects of consent bias are below an acceptable level of imprecision and constitute a reasonable social cost for conducting ethically responsible research.

Journal

American Journal of BioethicsTaylor & Francis

Published: Apr 1, 2013

Keywords: research; selection bias; consent bias; and informed consent

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