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Research Misconduct. What’s coming down the road?. (or: “You’ll never know what hit you”). Note: To see the answers to the survey questions, you must view this as a PowerPoint slide show.

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Presentation Transcript
slide1

Research Misconduct

What’s coming down the road?

(or: “You’ll never know what hit you”)

slide2

Note: To see the answers to the survey questions, you must view this as a PowerPoint slide show.

There are no “correct” answers for this presentation.  This was a poll.  There is no way to verify the accuracy of the answers given.

has your facility received at least one research misconduct allegation in the past 10 years
Has your facility received at least one research misconduct allegation in the past 10 years?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Don’t Know
slide4
For those who have received an allegation, was that allegation reported to the Office of Research Oversight?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Don’t Know
for those who have received an allegation was the allegation investigated
For those who have received an allegation, was the allegation investigated?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Don’t Know
slide6
For the allegations that were investigated, were they investigated under the procedures of VHA Handbook 1058.2?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Don’t Know
slide7
For allegations that were investigated under VHA Handbook 1058.2, did the investigation result in a finding of research misconduct?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Don’t Know
slide11

Federal Policy on Research Misconduct

  • Research Misconduct Defined
    • Research misconduct is defined as fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing
    • research, or in reporting research
    • results.

65 Fed. Reg. 76262 (2000)

slide12

Fabrication is making up data or

  • results and recording or reporting them.
  • Falsification is manipulating
  • research materials, equipment, or
  • processes, or changing or omitting data
  • or results such that the research is not
  • accurately represented in the research
  • record.
  • Plagiarism is the appropriation of
  • another person’s ideas, processes,
  • results, or words without giving
  • appropriate credit.
  • Research misconduct does not
  • include honest error or differences of
  • opinion.

Federal Policy on Research Misconduct

65 Fed. Reg. 76262 (2000)

slide13

Fabrication

Falsification

Plagiarism

slide14

F

F

P

slide15

¶ 12d(1). Inquiry and Investigation by a Local VA Medical Center.

In most instances, the local VA medical center that receives a research misconduct allegation is responsible for conducting an Inquiry, and if warranted, a further Investigation. The Investigation Committee’s findings and recommendations for corrective actions, if applicable, are set forth in an Investigation Report.

¶ 12d(3). Adjudication by VISN Director.

The appropriate VISN Director reviews the final Investigation Report and renders a decision regarding the findings and recommendations for corrective actions.

¶ 12d(5). Appeal to the Under Secretary for Health.

The Respondent may appeal a finding of research misconduct and proposed corrective actions (including debarment, if applicable) to the Under Secretary for Health [who] makes a ruling on the Respondent’s appeal which constitutes VA’s final agency action.

Sequence of Review

VA Policy and Procedures for Handling Research Misconduct Allegations

VHA Handbook 1058.2

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 02
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Considerations

  • Strict consistency with the Federal Policy on Research Misconduct
  • Overall consistency with VA Handbook 0700 (Administrative Investigations)
  • Overall consistency with other VHA policies, including VHA Handbook 1058.04 (Debarments for Research Impropriety)
  • Overall consistency with PHS Policies on Research Misconduct
  • Practical considerations based on 7 years of implementing the current VHA Handbook 1058.2
  • Feedback from the field
proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 021
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“If a matter involves both research misconduct and non-research misconduct issues, a single administrative investigation may be convened to review all of the related issues in order to promote administrative efficiency. NOTE: If a consolidated administrative investigation is convened, the investigation procedures must be consistent with the specifications of this Handbook and must contain a distinct recommendation regarding the research misconduct issue(s).

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §4b

Proposed

Only research misconduct allegations shall be processed under the VHA Handbook 1058.02 procedures.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 022
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

(no provision)

Proposed

At the direction of other Government oversight bodies including OIG, a research misconduct proceeding may be temporarily suspended.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 023
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“If the final outcome involves a debarment recommendation, ORO Central Office issues a notice of proposed debarment to the Respondent on behalf of the Under Secretary for Health. Such a notice is prepared according to the requirements of 38 CFR sec. 44.805, and specifies the length and terms of the proposed debarment.”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §17c(3)

Proposed

Incorporate the procedures of VHA Handbook 1058.04 (“Debarments and Suspensions based on Research Impropriety in VA Research,” 2008) into VHA Handbook 1058.02.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 024
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

(no provision)

Proposed

VA may publish findings of research misconduct, including name of Respondent and corrective actions; e.g., on ORO’s Web site. May also notify Respondent’s current employer and academic affiliate.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 025
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

(no provision)

Proposed

ORO may schedule in-person meetings with the RIO and/or Investigation Committee to provide in-depth instruction and guidance.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 026
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“In exceptional cases as determined by ORO Central Office within its discretion, an ORO Ad Hoc Committee consisting of ORO staff … and outside experts, as needed, may investigate a misconduct allegation in lieu of the local VA medical center. Such cases may include, but are not limited to, instances in which the local VA medical center is not prepared to handle the allegation in a manner consistent with these procedures….”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §12d(2)

Proposed

If, as determined by ORO, the responsible VA facility is unable to satisfactorily complete the Handbook requirements, the VISN shall appoint an alternate VA facility to assume the responsibilities.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 027
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“The position of RIO must be administratively assigned to either the Associate Chief of Staff (ACOS) for Research, the Research Coordinator, the Research and Development Committee Chairperson, or another similar individual within the research program….”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §7a

Proposed

The RIO will be the Research Compliance Officer (RCO) appointed by the facility Director.

The RIO position is changed to provide administrative management and support only.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 028
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“The RIO must promptly notify the VA medical center Director of all research misconduct allegations received.”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §13c(3)

Proposed

Within one (1) day of receiving an allegation, the RIO must notify the facility Director, ACOS/R, Regional Counsel, and ORO.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 029
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“Upon receipt of a research misconduct allegation, the RIO must determine whether the allegation contains all of the threshold requirements for opening an Inquiry.”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §13e

Proposed

ORO determines whether a research misconduct Inquiry must be initiated.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 0210
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“Wherever possible, the VA medical center and the non-VA agencies or entities with concurrent jurisdiction are encouraged to perform a joint Inquiry, and if warranted, a joint Investigation.”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §12c(3)

Proposed

If a non-VA institution has joint jurisdiction with VA over a research misconduct allegation, each institution shall conduct separate Inquiries.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 0211
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“Inquiries may be conducted by either the RIO or an Inquiry Committee appointed by the VA medical center Director.”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §14e(2)

“For every case in which an Inquiry is initiated, the RIO, or Inquiry Committee if applicable, must produce an Inquiry Report”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §14f

Proposed

The VA facility Director must appoint an individual (excluding the RIO) to conduct the Inquiry.

A short Inquiry Memorandum is required.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 0212
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“The Investigation Review (including final Investigation Report) normally must be completed within 90 days from the initiation of the Investigation.”

VHA Handbook 1058.2 §15f(1)

Proposed

The research misconduct Investigation must be completed within 120 days from the Investigation’s initiation.

proposed revisions vha handbook 1058 0213
Proposed Revisions: VHA Handbook 1058.02

Current

“The Investigation Report must be provided to the Respondent, and the portions of the Investigation Report related to the initial Informant’s role and testimony must be provided to the Informant, for their responses. Written comments must be submitted to the Committee within 7 days.”

Proposed

The Respondent and Informant must be given no less than 30 days to provide any comments on a draft of the Investigation report.

The draft Investigation report must also be sent to ORO and Regional Counsel for their review and comment.