What’s Trust Got to Do With It? Trust and the Importance of the Research-Care Distinction image

American Journal of Bioethics, September 2015, Vol. 15, No. 9
Emily Largent (Student Fellow alumna)

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From the article:

In a learning health care system, knowledge is an intended by-product of the patient–physician encounter. The integration of research and care within such systems holds the potential to advance socially valuable research, to yield health benefits for current and future patients, and to improve the quality of care while lowering costs (Institute of Medicine [IOM] 2012). Research–care integration is a worthy goal; however, it is also one that raises significant practical and ethical questions (Largent, Joffe, and Miller 2011).

An important and growing body of bioethics scholarship has sought to reconceptualize the relationship between research and care. Kelley and colleagues’ target article makes an important contribution to this literature by drawing attention to the implications of research–care integration in learning health care systems as perceived by patients (Kelley et al. 2015). One of the dominant themes to emerge from their data is trust: the importance of trust within the patient–physician relationship and the complex dynamic between trust in one’s physician, team, and hospital on one hand and trust in the research enterprise on the other.

bioethics human subjects research research