For Release August 31, 1999:
Medical Sentinel Will Require Public Disclosure of Research Data for Publication of Scientific Papers, Not Just Peer Review
Editor Challenges JAMA, NEJM and Others to Follow Suit
In announcing the change, Miguel A. Faria, Jr., M.D., Editor-In-Chief said, “This is a new standard of public access to research data that goes far beyond the heretofore almost universal editorial policy of peer-review.”
Beginning with the September/October issue, authors of clinical and scientific papers submitted to the Medical Sentinel must make available on the Internet the redacted raw data associated with their papers. The data from which conclusions are drawn will be posted at the lead author’s website or at www.aapsonline.org.
“This new policy called ‘public review’ will make scientific data available to other investigators and the public to facilitate the open exchange of information between scientists,” said Dr. Faria. This new “truth-in-research” policy mirrors the recently passed Congressional provision (introduced by Sen. Shelby) requiring public access to raw data of research studies funded by the federal government.
Dr. Faria said the change in policy was prompted by the politicization and increasing use of sometimes questionable scientific and medical research in making public policy. “Congressional inquiries have revealed that scientists, including government funded investigators, have breached accepted scientific practice by refusing to release and make available their publicly funded original data for further critical analysis by other researchers,” said Dr. Faria. “This is particularly true in the area of gun and violence research, HIV-AIDS and most recently, the rotavirus vaccine.” (See “Perversion of Science and Medicine,” Faria, MA Jr., Medical Sentinel, Spring/Summer 1997, www.haciendapub.com)
Dr. Faria challenged other medical journals such as The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) , the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) , and The Western Journal of Medicine (WJM) , to adopt the same “truth-in-research” policy. "We invite the editors to join us in restoring trust in published medical and scientific research in the medical literature by requiring public review of scientific information."
Jane M. Orient, M.D., Executive Director of AAPS, applauded the change. "This new policy is strong evidence of our commitment to the mission statement of the Medical Sentinel to promote scientific integrity. Sunshine is the disinfectant which will keep bad research from becoming bad public policy."
Concomitant with this new editorial policy of public review of scientific data, the September/October 1999 issue of the Medical Sentinel contains two important articles impacting on future health care policy.
The first, "Mandating Vaccines: Government Practicing Medicine Without a License?" by Jane M. Orient, M.D, contends public policy regarding vaccines is fundamentally flawed because it is based on poor scientific methodology (i.e., studies too small, too short, and too limited in populations represented), is insulated from independent criticism, and permeated with conflicts of interest.
The second demonstrates a link between Chronic Fatigue, Gulf War Syndrome and other chronic illnesses and mycoplasmal infections. Dr. Garth Nicolson and his associates (www.immed.org) conclude that treatment with common antibiotics (plus nutritional support, immune enhancement and other supplements) may help patients regain their health.
CONTACT: Kathryn Serkes (202) 333-3855 www.aapsonline.org