The AAMC on Oct. 31 submitted comments to the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Research Integrity (ORI) in response to the agency’s request for information on the Public Health Service Policies on Research Misconduct, 42 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) part 50 and 42 CFR part 93. The request was issued to help structure the ORI's future plans to revise the regulation.
In its comments, the AAMC emphasized the following points to the ORI:
- Retaining the current definition of research misconduct at 42 CFR §93.103 as limited to fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing research or in reporting research results. This definition allows the ORI to operate at the most focused approach and within its clear expertise.
- Changing the current language at §93.104 (b) for the requirements for findings of research misconduct to remove the word “recklessly” as part of the criteria for how a misconduct is committed.
- Recommending a thorough review of the required institutional processes through the allegation assessment, inquiry, and investigation stages to allow institutions greater flexibility from the initiation to the close of an investigation.
The ORI will review and consider the feedback to the RFI as they initiate a rulemaking process for the regulation in the near future.