Health experts promote ethics in health research at the Social Media Summit in Cebu

During the 3rd Philippine Healthcare and Social Media Summit on 25 April 2017 in Marco Polo Plaza Cebu, health experts cited possible ways in ensuring ethics in health research such as the following:

  • Safeguard participant privacy and confidentiality
  • Secure free and informed consent
  • Protect vulnerable populations
  • Draft ethical guidelines
  • Review Data Privacy Act

The said health experts included Dr. Pacifico Eric Calderon of the San Beda College of Medicine, Mr. Aldren Gonzales of the University of the Philippines Manila Medical Informatics Unit, and Prof. Maria Minerva P. Calimag of the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Medicine and Surgery.

Calderon also mentioned the challenges in maintaining physician-patient relationship such as poor quality of information, damage to professional image, violation of patient privacy, and blurring of professional and patient boundaries.

Gonzales added that social media is being utilized today in fields such as participatory medicine, behavioral studies, and public health promotion. According to Gonzales, the impact of social media can be measured through key performance indicators which include insights, exposure, reach, and engagement.

Meanwhile, Calimag discussed the social media ethics framework by the University of Aberdeen, the association of internet researchers (AoIR) 6 key guiding principles, and different scenarios and solutions to problems in research in healthcare and social media.