Publications from the PREVENT grant team
Pregnant women should not be categorised as a ‘vulnerable population’ in biomedical research studies: ending a vicious cycle of ‘vulnerability’
CB Krubiner and RR Faden. 2017. Journal of Medical Ethics.
"Because the designation of ‘vulnerable’ is otherwise applied to populations whose decision-making capacity about research participation is somehow compromised—such as children and adults of limited cognitive ability—many of us have been arguing for some time that using this designation for pregnant women is inappropriate and disrespectful. There is nothing about the state of pregnancy that renders pregnant women incapable of offering valid research consents or refusals. Moreover, rather than protecting the health interests of pregnant women and their offspring, this designation has had the opposite effect. It has contributed to the widespread exclusion of pregnant women from research activities, which is itself pernicious to the health of pregnant women."
Ethics, pregnancy, and ZIKV vaccine research & development
The Ethics Working Group on ZIKV Research and Pregnancy. 2017. Vaccine.
"The rapid spread of the Zika virus (ZIKV) has galvanized the global public health community toward development of ZIKV vaccines. The most dire consequence of ZIKV infection, Congenital ZIKV Syndrome (CZS), results from infection during pregnancy. As a consequence, pregnant women figure prominently in global concerns about ZIKV. They should also figure prominently in ZIKV vaccine development, but the way forward is not well established."