Biomedical research refers to the ample investigation studies conducted with the aim of promoting the management of condition and introducing new approaches in preventing diseases. Biomedical researches are also crucial in developing new products that are beneficial in the medical field. These researches have been of optimal help in the advancement of scientific testing of theories and ideas, their applicability, feasibility and the degree of risk associated with new discoveries before fully implementation in the community. It is through these researchers that the world has seen improvement and reduction in mortality and morbidity of several cases in the world (California Biomedical Research Association, 2011).
Biomedical research is one of the contemporary health ethical issues where professionals use living things as their experimental subjects. Researchers explore their investigational topic using laboratory animals, which mode of effect on the investigated question are closely related to those of human beings. Some of the common laboratory animals used during biomedical research includes rabbits, moles and rats. Such are animals are also preferred since they are easy to manipulate, handle and breed. Once the investigated effect has been diagnosed safe or with not severe effects to the animals, the researchers then take the next step of investigating the issue of human beings (Mello, Goodman, & Faden, 2012). At this stage, ethical principles consideration is imperative in maintaining and observing subjects rights.
There are various categories of biomedical research, which include basic, applied, vitro, vivo, pre-clinical and clinical trials researches. Out of these categories, human subjects may be used in basic research, applied research, vivo researches, and clinical trials. Most of the others methods uses animal subjects in the trials. Currently, there is growing need to reduce the use of animals in the research where researcher are implementing the 3-Rs (reduction, refinement and replacement) in research. Reduction aims at minimizing the number of animals used, refinement calls for improving the environment where the research are to be done while replacement refers to majoring on a given site or region of an animal other than involving the whole animal (California Biomedical Research Association, 2011).
There are four ethical principles in medical research. The principles are fundamental in safeguarding the participant’s welfare. The four principles include autonomy, justice, beneficence and non-maleficence (Talukder, Nazneen, Hossain, and Ishrat, 2010). Researches involving human participation as the experiment subjects and any medical practice should comply with these for bioethics. Otherwise, the authenticity of the practice raises ample concerns. Autonomy of the respondent refers to a situation where the participant has the full and final mandate in accepting participation. The recruitment process should be free from coercion and coaxing (Rosenbaum, 2012). Potential participants should be explaining the research intended in details in a language that is unambiguous, clear, conclusive and understandable by the subject. The explanation involves the procedure, repercussions (both positive and negative), risks involve, duration and extent of involvement. The subject is expected to confirm acceptance to participate through signing an informed consent.
Bioethics principle of justice emphasizes that the positive and negative cost of the research should be evenly distributed within a society (Rosenbaum, 2012). This is achieved through ensuring fairness in resource distribution; avoid conflicts with existing legislations, participant’s rights and sound evaluation of competing needs during the research. Biomedical researchers should observe the principle of beneficence which calls for carrying out researches that are intended to do good to the participants and targeted population. Lastly, it is also imperative that researchers conform to the principle of non-maleficence, which preaches on no harm effect to the subjects. Biomedical researchers should explain the experiment effects extensively to the subjects so that the subjects determine whether the procedure is safe from their point of judgment (Rosenbaum, 2012). In cases where the subjects cannot intervene on their behalf, such as children and animals, researchers should observe the existing legislations.
In conclusion, biomedical researches have an imperative effect to the society, yet can be misused to cause detrimental repercussion when bioethics principles are ignored or overlooked. The advancement in the medical field is credited to biomedical medical researchers.