Investigators and sponsoring institutions have an obligation to design, conduct, and report research that is scientifically sound and rigorously ethical, and have safeguards for the well-being of the human research subjects. In conducting research, investigators and institutions regularly face multiple interests and influences. While these interests are more commonly mutually beneficial and harmoniously co-exist, they may compete, and very rarely conflict with, or potentially corrupt the research obligations of the institution and investigator. Even in situations where multiple interests do not conflict, those not directly involved in the research may perceive otherwise.
The Research Conflict of Interest Committee (RCOIC) is charged with:
- Reviewing disclosed interests and determining whether they create a conflict;
- Determining actions that must be taken to manage, reduce, or eliminate any identified conflicts of interest;
- Rebutting the presumption that an individual who is conflicted in the research may not conduct such research;
- Ensuring the implementation and monitoring of written management plans;
- Providing advice to institutional officials on conflict of interest policies, and assisting institutional officials in the enforcement of conflict of interest policies related to research; and
- Reviewing any failure of any investigator to comply with the conflicts of interest policies, determine whether failures biased the design, conduct, or reporting of the research, and recommend corrective action or sanctions when appropriate.
Resources are available to investigators and researchers at Marshfield Clinic to ensure that they comply with the conflicts of interest policies and disclosure requirements. Investigators and researchers should familiarize themselves with institutional policies, and questions about investigator conflicts of interest may be directed to ORIP at (715) 221-7040.
ORIP and Sponsored Programs are jointly responsible for obtaining conflict of interest disclosures from investigators conducting research at Marshfield Clinic. Investigators are to provide annual disclosures of significant financial interests as required by policy, or certify that no conflict circumstances exist. There are also certain intermittent disclosures that may be required. Questions about the disclosure requirements may be directed to ORIP at (715) 221-8840.