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Research Governance

In March 2001 the Department of Health published the Research Governance Framework for Health and Social Care which 'outlines principals of good governance that apply to all research undertaken within the remit of the Secretary of State for Health.' A second version was published in April 2005.

What are the main elements of the Dept. of Health Research Governance Framework for Health and Social Care?

The Research Governance Framework sets out core principles of good research governance, to be secured by the achievement of key standards in the following five domains:

  • ethics: ensuring the dignity, rights, safety and well- being of research participants [through independent ethical review; appropriate arrangements for obtaining informed consent; confidentiality & protection of data; 'consumer' involvement & respect for diversity];
  • science: ensuring that the design and methods of research are subject to independent review by relevant experts;
  • information: ensuring full and free public access to information on the research and its findings;
  • health and safety: ensuring at all times the safety of research participants, researchers and other staff;
  • finance: ensuring financial probity and compliance with the law in the conduct of research.

Key elements of a quality research culture are listed as:

  • Respect for participants' dignity, rights, safety and well being
  • Valuing diversity within society
  • Personal and scientific integrity
  • Leadership
  • Honesty
  • Accountability
  • Openness
  • Clear and supportive management
  • Written procedures and staff training

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