Skip to main content


Thomas, James C. & McNabb, Sarah (2019). Principles and Ethics of Collecting and Managing Health Data.. Macfarlane, Sarah B. & AbouZahr, Carla (Eds.) (pp. 469-486). London: Palgrave Macmillan.


Thomas and McNabb explore ethical issues associated with collecting and using data for public health. Distinguishing between ethics for medical research and for public health action, they identify unique challenges associated with maintaining health information systems. The authors emphasise the importance of ensuring data confidentiality, establishing principles for sharing data, determining availability and ownership of data, maintaining transparency, and using routine data to monitor health equity. They warn that, while data facilitate health action, speed of technological advances and escalation of data availability threaten society’s ability to maintain ethical principles, procedures, skills, and systems. Thomas and McNabb conclude that monitoring data ethics and training individuals to implement policies and procedures to guard them are urgent ethical imperatives.


Reference Type

Book Section

Year Published



Thomas, James C.
McNabb, Sarah


Thomas, JC - 0000-0002-2225-2052