Committee on Ethics Principles and Guidelines for Health Standards for Long Duration and Exploration Spaceflights

Type: Consensus Study
Topics: Biomedical and Health Research, Quality and Patient Safety, Select Populations and Health Equity
Board: Board on Health Sciences Policy

Activity Description

NASA is in the process of planning for exploration class missions of long duration and beyond low Earth orbit (LEO). An IOM committee will conduct a study to examine policy and ethical issues relevant to crew health standards for these missions. The committee will consider the application of existing health standards and the potential development of a new set of standards for missions beyond LEO. These standards would address potential hazardous exposures and working conditions that are uncertain, unknown or that go beyond current NASA risk limits. NASA is looking, in particular, for a framework of ethical and policy principles that can help guide decision-making associated with implementing health standards for exploration class space missions when existing standards cannot be fully met, or the level of knowledge of a given condition is sufficiently limited that an adequate standard cannot be developed, for the mission. As part of its deliberations, the committee will consider and respond to options proposed by NASA, as well as offer options of its own.

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