NIH issues new ethics rules

The National Institutes of Health is overhauling its ethical rules.

    NIH scientists will continue to be able to conduct academic activities such as teaching courses at universities, writing general textbooks, performing scientific journal reviews, participating in scientific meetings and providing general lectures to physicians and scientists at continuing professional education and similar events, as well as practicing medicine as appropriate, provided that the activities are otherwise in accordance with existing law and adhere strictly to the conditions specified in the new rules.

Among the new rules:

    ...all NIH employees are prohibited from engaging in certain outside employment with: 1) substantially affected organizations, including pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies; 2) supported research institutions, including NIH grantees; 3) health care providers and insurers; and 4) related trade, professional or similar associations. Investments in organizations substantially affected by the NIH, such as the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, are also not allowed for those employees who are required to file public and confidential financial disclosure reports, and are restricted for other staff.

If you use NIH-affiliated folks for faculty, reviews, or other purposes, it'd worth your time to check out the new rules. Everybody's jumping on this bandwagon.

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