Joanna Manning, ‘Does the Law on Compensation for Research-Related Injury in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand Meet Ethical Requirements?’

Abstract:
Despite a consensus that society owes an ethical obligation to compensate for research-related injury, and that no-fault is the best ethical response, an assessment of the compensation arrangements in place in the UK, Australia and New Zealand shows that in general compensation arrangements fall below this ethical expectation. Most subjects rely on ex gratia payment or an unenforceable assurance of payment in the event of injury. It is also likely that, given significant deficiencies in participant information about compensation arrangements in place for trials recommended by the supervisory ethics agencies in each jurisdiction, subjects only find out about their financial exposure in the event of injury. Industry-drafted guidelines governing compensation in commercially sponsored trials do not protect subjects’ interests, but operate primarily to protect the interests of industry. The article considers potential solutions to the ethical deficiency of the compensation arrangements, and argues that the ethical corollary of the fact that society is the ultimate beneficiary of its members’ participation in clinical research, is that society as a whole should bear the cost of participant injuries, through establishment of a central no-fault compensation fund financed either by the state or those directly involved in biomedical research.

Joanna M Manning, Does the Law on Compensation for Research-Related Injury in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand Meet Ethical Requirements?, Medical Law Review, Volume 25, Issue 3, 1 August 2017, Pages 397–427, https://doi.org/10.1093/medlaw/fwx019.

First posted 2017-08-21 06:34:26

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