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Subject:   New Maryland Law
Date:   2002-05-20

Maryland's Governor Glendening has just signed into law (May 16) House Bill 917 which enhances human subjects protections in the State of Maryland. Jack Schwartz of the state's Attorney General's Office and the president of CIRCARE were present for the bill signing. This legislation, proposed and drafted by Delegate Hubbard of Prince George's County, followed the highly publicized death of Ellen Roche in an asthma study at Johns Hopkins Hospital, and the lead paint toxicity studies at Kennedy Kreiger Institute that has generated law suits claiming damages. In the hearing before the House of Delegates, Michael Susko and Adil Shamoo testified on behalf of CIRCARE in support of the legislation. The bill has three key features which go beyond current federal safeguards, and can offer a model for certain additional reforms for the rest of the nation.

  1. Transparency: IRB minutes of research protocols are to be made available at a request by a citizen.
  2. All private research is to be covered by the federal standard of protection for publicly funded research.
  3. Injunctive relief: the Attorney General has power to enforce these provisions.

Concerned advocacy groups and citizens now have a useful tool to help become aware and monitor current research, in terms of how ethical issues are addressed.

Our compliments go to the work of Delegate Hubbard, Jack Schwartz and the Governor of Maryland for making this legislation possible. We also acknowledge that Johns Hopkins University supported this legislation in its final form.

Michael A. Susko MS, CIRCARE President
(410) 499-4895

Adil Shamoo Ph.D., CIRCARE Co-Founder
(410) 706-3327

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Last Updated: 2006-02-13

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