The Committee is required to give its opinion at the request of :
- the various parliaments or of any member of their governments
- Research institutes, hospitals
- tertiary education institutions
- local ethical committees connected to hospitals or universities or approved by any of the Communities.
The Belgian Advisory Committee on Bioethics provide opinions on the problems raised by research and research
- in the fields of biology, medicine and health care.
- concerning the ethical, social and legal aspects of these problems, particularly from the angle of respect for human rights.
In most cases, the Committee entrusts the task of preparing the opinion to a select commission. The latter’s composition reflects that of the Committee.
The select commissions may rely on outside experts for some specific hearing as well as permanent experts. The select commission makes a report of its work to the Committee together with a draft opinion. The discussions at the plenary session of the Committee are intended to enrich the debate. It is possible to suggest amendments, that the select commission will take into account in its final opinion.
The meetings of the Committee and of the select commissions are not open to the public.
The approved opinions reflect the various positions expressed.