International Bioethics Committee


Topic A

Privacy Issues of Collecting Information for Big Data Projects

The development of modern computing technologies has revolutionized data collection, storage and movement. Within the realms of healthcare, this has translated into digitizing patient healthcare records, as well as storage on the “cloud,” enabling the sharing of such information between the patient, healthcare providers and insurance companies.

Furthermore, development of the Internet of Things (IoT) has led to the creation of devices such as connected health trackers, apps and wearables, for example, the Fitbit which generate a multitude of metrics related to healthcare, such as fitness activity, sleep patterns, heart rate patterns. These metrics are then stored in servers around the world and processed through algorithms to generate usable information.

Topic B

Right of Choice for
Unresponsive Patients

The advancement of medical technology has allowed patients to attain an unprecedented level of control over their medical care. Patients of the 21st century not only have access to an ever-growing range of options for medical treatment, but also the right to refuse life-sustaining treatment. This control, however, becomes disputed when patients enter an unresponsive state.

An unresponsive state – which encompasses vegetative states, brain death, and comas – renders patients incapable of dictating the course of their medical treatment. Patients in such a state typically have severe neurological damage, which results in their organs functioning, but only through the assistance of automated devices. As such, the right of choice falls into the hands of the patient's immediate family; the family, or a legal trustee, gets to decide whether treatment should continue, in hopes of the patient’s eventual return to a conscious state, or if treatment should be withdrawn and the patient’s organs could then be donated.

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Dais team

Jessica Lin


Jesse Hsieh