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On July 26, 2011, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) with the purpose of soliciting comments on how current regulations for protecting research participants could be modernized and revised. The rationale for revising the regulations was as follows: this ANPRM seeks comment on how to better protect human subjects who are involved in research, while facilitating valuable research and reducing burden, delay, and ambiguity for investigators. The current regulations governing human subjects research were developed years ago when research was predominantly conducted at universities, colleges, and medical institutions, and each study generally took place at only a single site. Although the regulations have been amended over the years, they have not kept pace with the evolving human research enterprise, the proliferation of multisite clinical trials and observational studies, the expansion of health services research, research in the social and behavioral sciences, and research involving databases, the Internet, and biological specimen repositories, and the use of advanced technologies, such as genomics. Proposed Revisions to the Common Rule: Perspectives of Social and Behavioral Scientists: Workshop Summary focuses on six broad topic areas: 1. Evidence on the functioning of the Common Rule and of institutional review boards (IRBs), to provide context for the proposed revisions. 2. The types and levels of risks and harms encountered in social and behavioral sciences, and issues related to the severity and probability of harm, because the ANPRM asks for input on calibration of levels of review to levels of risk. 3. The consent process and special populations, because new rules have been proposed to improve informed consent (e.g., standard consent form, consent for future uses of biospecimens, and re-consenting for further use of existing research data). 4. Issues related to the protection of research participants in studies that involve use of existing data and data sharing, because the ANPRM proposed applying standards for protecting the privacy of healthcare data to research data. 5. Multidisciplinary and multisite studies, because the ANPRM proposed a revision to the regulations that would allow multisite studies to be covered by a single IRB. 6. The purview and roles of IRBs, because the ANPRM included possible revisions to categories of research that could entail changes in IRB oversight.
Proposed Revisions to the Common Rule for the Protection of Human Subjects in the Behavioral and Social Sciences examines how to update human subjects protections regulations so that they effectively respond to current research contexts and methods. With a specific focus on social and behavioral sciences, this consensus report aims to address the dramatic alterations in the research landscapes that institutional review boards (IRBs) have come to inhabit during the past 40 years. The report aims to balance respect for the individual persons whose consent to participate makes research possible and respect for the social benefits that productive research communities make possible. The ethics of human subjects research has captured scientific and regulatory attention for half a century. To keep abreast of the universe of changes that factor into the ethical conduct of research today, the Department of Health and Human Services published an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) in July 2011. Recognizing that widespread technological and societal transformations have occurred in the contexts for and conduct of human research since the passage of the National Research Act of 1974, the ANPRM revisits the regulations mandated by the Act in a correspondingly comprehensive manner. Its proposals aim to modernize the Common Rule and to improve the efficiency of the work conducted under its auspices. Proposed Revisions to the Common Rule for the Protection of Human Subjects in the Behavioral and Social Sciences identifies issues raised in the ANPRM that are critical and feasible for the federal government to address for the protection of participants and for the advancement of the social and behavioral sciences. For each identified issue, this report provides guidance for IRBs on techniques to address it, with specific examples and best practice models to illustrate how the techniques would be applied to different behavioral and social sciences research procedures.
On July 26, 2011, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced its intention to significantly revise and update HHS regulations regarding human subject research for the first time since 1991, when it originally promulgated what has become known as the Common Rule. HHS further solicited comments to its proposed revisions contained in this Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) through the use of 74 questions. Over 1100 interested parties responded to these questions. HHS is still in the process of reviewing and analyzing the responses. No further action has been taken and, as of this writing, a formal Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) has not been issued. The stated goal of the ANPRM is enhancement of protections for human research subjects, with simultaneous improvement of the effectiveness of the federal oversight system. This thesis addresses certain of the proposed revisions, particularly those affecting Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) while also addressing certain comments from interested stakeholders in response to the ANPRM. While certain of the proposals may merit careful consideration and possible rule revision, I argue that many of the proposed changes are already allowed under the current regulatory scheme. It is really OHRP guidance and better education that is needed, and not a major overhaul of the Common Rule. I also address the long overlooked vulnerable population of decisionally impaired adults and propose additional protections for this group, consistent with the current regulations for protecting other vulnerable categories of research participants.
Research universities are critical contributors to our national research enterprise. They are the principal source of a world-class labor force and fundamental discoveries that enhance our lives and the lives of others around the world. These institutions help to create an educated citizenry capable of making informed and crucial choices as participants in a democratic society. However many are concerned that the unintended cumulative effect of federal regulations undercuts the productivity of the research enterprise and diminishes the return on the federal investment in research. Optimizing the Nation's Investment in Academic Research reviews the regulatory framework as it currently exists, considers specific regulations that have placed undue and often unanticipated burdens on the research enterprise, and reassesses the process by which these regulations are created, reviewed, and retired. This review is critical to strengthen the partnership between the federal government and research institutions, to maximize the creation of new knowledge and products, to provide for the effective training and education of the next generation of scholars and workers, and to optimize the return on the federal investment in research for the benefit of the American people.
Only paperback edition of a great legal classic. Lucid, accessible coverage of liability, criminal law, torts, contracts, and more, from historical perspective. New introduction by Sheldon M. Novick. Table of Cases.

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