The Use of Human Tissue in Epidemiological Research; Ethical and Legal Considerations in Two Biobanks in Belgium

- Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy
Author/s: -Truyers, Carla -Kellen, Eliane -Arbyn, Marc -Trommelmans, Leen -Nys, Herman -Hensen, Karen -Aertgeerts, Bert -Bartholomeeusen, Stefaan -Hansson, Mats -Buntinx, Frank
Journal: Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy
Year: 2010
Volume: 13
Issue: 2
Pages: 169
Start Page: 169

This paper discusses the legal implications of setting up two new biobanks in Belgium. The first is hospital-based and will archive tissue from patients with haematologic cancer, whereas the second is linked to a general practice based morbidity registry and will involve storage of blood samples. To date, Belgium has no specific legislation that regulates storage of human tissue and related databases. Several issues concerning the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal medical data are discussed from the existing privacy legislation. We will address the principle of consent (broad versus specific) and the type of data recorded (anonymous, encoded and identifiable) for both biobanks.