Canada Research Chair in Shared Decision Making and Knowledge Translation

The ethics of mHealth in resource-poor areas: France Légaré contributes to a study led by Lucie Laflamme

mHealth has great potential to impact care in low-resource countries, but there are significant ethical concerns pertaining to patient autonomy, safety, and justice. This study aimed to achieve consensus among stakeholders on how mHealth developers and users in low-resource settings should address these concerns among mHealth developers and users, in particular for the application of image-based consultation for diagnostic support. Recommended actions included: building in risk mitigation measures from the development stage, establishing an inclusive consultation processes, using open source platforms whenever possible, training all clinical users, and bearing in mind that the gold standard of care is face-to-face consultation with the patient. The priorities most forcefully articulated were the need to adopt and maintain participatory processes as well as promoting self-governance. The need for participatory processes and self-governance cuts across the mHealth lifecycle and are prerequisites to the safeguard of autonomy, safety and justice. Read the article here.

By Titilayo Agbadje, 18/09/2019