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A time for new north–south relationships in global health

Authors Kim JU, Oleribe O, Njie R, Taylor-Robinson SD

Received 15 July 2017

Accepted for publication 8 September 2017

Published 7 November 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 401—408


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Jin Un Kim,1 Obinna Oleribe,2 Ramou Njie,3 Simon D Taylor-Robinson1

1Division of Digestive Health, Department of Surgery and Cancer, Imperial College London, London, UK; 2Excellence and Friends Management Care Centre, Abuja, Nigeria; 3MRC, Serekunda, The Gambia

Abstract: The modern concept of globalization in health care and clinical research often carries a positive message for the “Global South” nations of Africa, South America and Southeast Asia. However, bioethical abuse of participants in clinical trials still exists in the Global South. Unethical studies directed by the “Global North”, formed by the medically advanced nations in North America, Western Europe and Japan, have been hugely concerning. The issue between the Global North and South is a well-recognized socioeconomic phenomenon of globalization. Medical exploitation has its roots in the socioeconomic interactions of a postcolonial world, and solutions to reducing exploitation require a deeper understanding of these societal models of globalization. We explore the fundamental causes of imbalance and suggest solutions. Reflecting on the globalization model, there must be an effort to empower the Global South nations to direct and govern their own health care systems efficiently on the basis of equality.

Keywords: global health, bioethics, clinical trials, Africa, exploitation, imperialism

Creative Commons License This work is published by Dove Medical Press Limited, and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License. The full terms of the License are available at The license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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