Intended for healthcare professionals


Australian public's views on privacy and health research

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: (Published 25 May 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:1274
  1. David C Whiteman, NHMRC senior research fellow (,
  2. Cathy Clutton, acting executive director,
  3. David Hill, director
  1. Division of Population Studies and Human Genetics, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Herston, QLD 4006, Australia
  2. Centre for Health Advice, Policy, and Ethics, National Health and Medical Research Council, GPO Box 1421, Canberra, ACT 2601, Australia
  3. Cancer Council Victoria, Carlton, VIC 3053, Australia

    EDITOR—Attitudes to privacy in health research are often the subject of debate, however, surprisingly little data exist with which to guide policy. Addressing this gap, Barrett et al recently reported overwhelming support among the British public for legislation to make cancer registration compulsory and found high levels of acceptance for registries being used as sampling frames for research.1 Is this tolerance of research using sensitive health data …

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