What is the difference between the duties of the Regional Program on Bioethics and the Ethics Office in PAHO?
The Regional Program on Bioethics works in bioethics as the discipline that studies the ethical problems that arise in regards to health, for example, when conducting research with human subjects, designing health policy, or providing health care.
The Ethics Office seeks to ensure that PAHO employees behave ethically in the exercise of their work: With professional integrity and following the rules of conduct of the Organization.
Which are the different areas within bioethics?
Ethical problems permeate all areas of work in health. Health-related activities can be therapeutic (aimed at a direct benefit) or non-therapeutic (aimed at the generation of knowledge). Furthermore, they can aim at the individual or collective level.
The health activity that seeks the benefit of individuals in health care and the ethical problems that arise in this context are the subject of clinical ethics. The health activity that seeks the benefit of populations is a public health and the ethical problems that arise in this context are the subject of public health ethics. The health activity that doesn't seek a direct benefit for individuals but rather seeks for the generation of knowledge in health research. The ethical problems that arise when conducting health research are the subject of research ethics. Health research can either be clinical research or public health research. Research ethics covers both since they share the same normative and regulatory framework.