Conflict and Health
[Accessed 19 May 2018]
14 May 2018
Using digital health to enable ethical health research in conflict and other humanitarian settings
Authors: Eric D. Perakslis
Conducting research in a humanitarian setting requires quantifiable quality measures to ensure ethical study conduct. Digital health technologies are proven to improve research study quality and efficacy via automated data collection, improvement of data reliability, fidelity and resilience and by improved data provenance and traceability. Additionally, digital health methodologies can improve patient identity, patient privacy, study transparency, data sharing, competent informed consent, and the confidentiality and security of humanitarian operations. It can seem counterintuitive to press forward aggressively with digital technologies at a time of heightened population vulnerability and cyber security concerns, but new approaches are essential to meet the rapidly increasing demands of humanitarian research. In this paper we present the case for the digital modernization of humanitarian research in conflict and other humanitarian settings as a vehicle for improved research quality and ethics.