NEW YORK - Columbia University has ordered new training for
faculty members whose research involves children after a federal
investigation faulted a program that tested AIDS drugs on foster
The training will be "specifically geared to participation of
children in research," university spokeswoman Marilyn Castaldi
said Wednesday in a statement.
The training plan was filed with the federal Office for Human
Research Protections, which reported last June that Columbia
researchers had failed to obtain and evaluate whether they had
proper consent, information and safeguards for the children they
worked with in the 1980s and '90s, the investigators said.
The OHRP report came a month after a review by The Associated
Press found Columbia and other programs around the country had
failed to appoint independent advocates for foster children in
AIDS drug testing as required by federal law.
Columbia officials said at the time that advocates weren't
required because the experiments held the promise of improving
the children's health.
Medical ethicists disagreed, saying foster children were
vulnerable and needed protection.
A Feb. 17 letter from OHRP addressed to Columbia University
Medical Center and its affiliated NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital
said their corrective actions "adequately address OHRP's
findings, questions and concerns."
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