Thursday, July 12, 2012

Misconceptions About Payments to Research Participants

A recent article in Bioethics by Largent, Grady, Miller, and Wertheimer argues that IRB members’ concerns about payments to research subjects are based on conceptual or ethical misconceptions. As a result, unnecessary limits may be placed on payments to participants, hindering valuable research without ethical cause.

The authors report on the first national survey of IRB members and HRPP professionals to assess attitudes about whether and why payment of research participants constitutes coercion or undue influence. They conclude it is in error to equate coercion with influence, even when the influence is strong. The analysis explores the question as to why IRB members and HRPP professionals have misconceptions about coercion and undue influence. They suggest that IRBs should not interfere with what seem to be win-win-win propositions for researchers, prospective participants, and those who stand to benefit from research.
This Article of Note may be found online at: doi:10.1111/j.1467-8519.2012.01972.x

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