Formal Notice: New Federal Regulations on Conflicts of Interest

Please read this memo to faculty, staff, students, and trainees from Joy Bryde, Conflict of Interest Officer and Assistant Director of Research Compliance.

On August 25, 2011, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a Final Rule entitled "Responsibility of Applicants for Promoting Objectivity in Research for which Public Health Service [PHS] Funding is Sought and Responsible Prospective Contractors" which focuses on the disclosure, management and reporting of financial conflicts of interest.

The deadline for the University to be compliant with the new federal regulations is August 24, 2012.

We have established a page on the Research Compliance Program website which includes a link to the new federal regulations. A summary of some major changes are also outlined with a comparison of current policy and regulations. The page is accessible at http://research.unc.edu/offices/research-compliance-program/index.htm.

Please continue to check the website as it will be updated with information and questions that come in from members of the campus community.

The new Rule will be applicable to PHS funded research. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is in the process of reviewing its current policy, considering the necessary changes to be in compliance with the new regulations while honoring its philosophy of one standard regardless of source of funding. Universities around the country, as well as UNC General Administration, are also going through similar processes.

Over the past few years, the University has taken a number of steps to ensure compliance with federal regulations on conflicts of interest. The University has implemented a comprehensive Policy on Individual Conflicts of Interest and Commitment, the addition of a University Compliance Line (1-866-294-8688) and a website to anonymously report unethical conduct (https://secure.ethicspoint.com/domain/en/report_company.asp).

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