THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE BELMONT REPORT
The Significance of the Belmont Report to the Nursing Research
The Belmont Report is a critical work related to ethics in clinical research. Belmont aims at protecting the subjects in clinical trials as well as participants in research studies (Miracle, 2016). It plays a vital role as an ethical framework for nursing research and ensures that the rights of subjects are respected throughout the process (Department of Health, 2014). The Belmont Report has three main components, including respect for persons, beneficence, and justice.
Respect for persons relates to the protection of the autonomy of every individual and treating them with respect and courtesy. It is important to have informed consent before involving human subjects in clinical research (Miracle, 2016). The requirement is that people should be given a chance to practice their freedom, to decide or choose. On the other hand, the researcher should practice truthfulness and perform his/her study honestly.
Beneficence relates to the idea of “Do no harm.” It is a principle in research ethics that underpin the importance of the researcher to ensure that the wellbeing of the participants is considered. In clinical trials, the welfare of the human subjects should remain an important goal (Sims, 2010). Therefore, this goal is achieved by minimizing the risk to the participants while maximizing the benefits of the study or clinical trial.
Justice refers to fairness in decision-making in research, especially when selecting research participants. Justice ensures sensible, non-exploitative, and well-thought-out procedures throughout the study. The principle further relates to the fair and equal distribution of risks and benefits to potential subjects in a clinical trial (Miracle, 2016). It determines the criteria for use in deciding who should participate in a study to avoid any form of injustice.