(2002; 166 pages)
Transparency of data
Dr Batya Haran, Israel
One of the key attributes of organizations and agencies today, in particular in the public health arena, is transparency. There are three aspects to transparency, namely (1) public health; (2) patient’s rights, and (3) building confidence in the regulatory authority. We have to provide reliable information to patients and physicians and, when a product needs to be recalled, we should avoid creating unnecessary panic among the public.
In general, the more information one can give the better. However, when considering what kind and how much information to release, three aspects should be taken into account: (1) the confidentiality of the data that belong to the manufacturers; (2) the confidentiality of the data that belong to the patients; and (3) the need for transparency from the regulatory authorities. In summary, all regulatory authorities have to enhance transparency, providing information that is balanced and reliable.