Cameroon: New Law on Medical Research Involving the “Human Person” Adopted

Cameroon: New Law on Medical Research Involving the “Human Person” Adopted
Nicolas Boring
The Global Legal Monitor, Library of Congress, 2022
On April 27, 2022, the Parliament of Cameroon adopted a law providing a new framework for medical research involving the “human person.” This law places a particular emphasis on the right to information and the free, informed, and written consent of the participants. It also provides guarantees regarding respect for privacy and confidentiality of personal data and respect for human integrity, dignity, and vulnerability…
Background to the Law
According to Cameroonian press reports, the new law was drafted in reaction to a scandal involving the trial of a preventive treatment for AIDS conducted in 2004 by the American NGO Family Health International on sex workers in Douala “in violation of [their] ethical and deontological rights.” The new law also represents a response to the recent proliferation in Cameroon of clinical trials of COVID-19 treatments conducted without rigorous controls.
Content of the Law
The newly enacted law delimits the scope of consent for medical research involving minors (articles 15 and 16), disabled persons (articles 17 and 18), and pregnant women (articles 19 and 20). It also provides a framework for medical research on in vivo fetuses and in vivo embryos (articles 19 to 22). Finally, the law addresses research conducted on stillborn children (articles 23 and 24) and on the dead (articles 27 and 28)…

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