Ethics and Epidemiology

Steven S. Coughlin, Tom L. Beauchamp, Douglas L. Weed

Research output: Book/ReportBook

34 Scopus citations


In the ten years since the first edition of this book was published, there have been many important ethical developments in epidemiology and related fields in public health and medicine. These developments include implementation of the HIPAA privacy rules, the completion of the American College of Epidemiology (ACE) ethics guidelines and ACE policy statements on sharing data from epidemiologic studies, and the drafting of a public health code of ethics. This revised edition of the text includes selected chapters from the first edition, which have been updated and revised, along with several new chapters on issues concerning the ethics of public health practice, international health research, and genetic epidemiology. The chapters are organized topically and divided into four parts. The first part is titled "Foundations" because the chapters introduce basic and recurring concepts and principles. The subsequent parts deal with "Informed Consent, Privacy, and Confidentiality," "Balancing Risks and Benefits," and the "Regulatory Context and Professional Education." The latter subject includes discussion of the institutional review board (IRB) system and issues surrounding scientific misconduct in epidemiologic research. The objective of this work foster greater awareness of situations that require moral reflection, judgment, or decision, while pointing to ways in which justified moral conclusions can be reached.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages328
ISBN (Electronic)9780199864416
ISBN (Print)9780195322934
StatePublished - Sep 1 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Confidentiality
  • Epidemiology
  • Ethics
  • Genetics
  • Hiv/aids
  • Informed consent
  • Institutional review boards
  • Moral reasoning
  • Public health practice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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