BESKERM DEUR INGELIGTE TOESTEMMING: ’N GEREFORMEERD-ETIESE BESINNING OOR ARTIKEL 6 VAN DIE UNIVERSELE VERKLARING VAN BIO-ETIEK EN MENSEREGTE
AbstractIn 2005 the Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights (UDBHR) of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) was accepted unanimously by the world community – consisting of 191 member nations – which means that the declaration is currently the first and only bioethical text to which the entire world, including South Africa, has committed itself. Despite this fact, little or no attention is paid to the declaration in South Africa. According to UNESCO, the declaration should be brought to the attention of the community, because knowledge will promote more effective application of its principles. In an attempt to answer the call of UNESCO, article 6.1 of the declaration is discussed briefly in this article. It is clear that this principlereferring to a human right, comprises two important components, namely giving information and giving consent. These two ethical values must always be applied during medical intervention and research. Where they are applied, human autonomy is confirmed and human dignity expressed. Although the UDBHR is not judicially enforceable in the country, its universal nature offers a clear moral force in the bioethical debate in South Africa.
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