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Med Sci (Paris). 2018 Aug-Sep;34(8-9):717-722. doi: 10.1051/medsci/20183408019. Epub 2018 Sep 19.

[The digital pill, between beneficence and vigilance: ethical stakes].

[Article in French]

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Espace régional d'éthique, CHU de Caen, Normandie Université, 14000 Caen, France - Normandie univ, UNICAEN, Inserm U1086, ANTICIPE, 14000 Caen, France.
Normandie univ, UNICAEN, Inserm U1086, ANTICIPE, 14000 Caen, France.
Univ. Bordeaux, Inserm U1219, EPICENE, Cancer et expositions environnementales, 33000 Bordeaux, France.


Since November 2017, the digital pill, which makes it possible to know whether a patient has achieved compliance or not with the treatment has become a reality. This drug can benefit the patients by helping them to better follow their treatment and avoid misuse. However, even though the use of this device requests patient consent, major questions arise regarding the respect for privacy and freedom of action. Evidently, the correct use of drugs is both a public health and economic issue, but through this digital tool, the temptation could be to implement measures to control citizens, in particular regarding the use of treatments that affect health expenditure. A too prescriptive conception of monitoring algorithms could alter the care relationship, denying the part of adaptation that a patient can legitimately claim in taking his treatment. The digital pill could be a helpful tool but it is necessary to evaluate its fair place in terms of respect for the person and adequacy with its liberties.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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