Social sciences paper retracted for lack of ethical approval
Here’s the notice for “Deservingness to state health services for South – South migrants: A preliminary study of Costa Rican providers’ views,” a paper in Social Science & Medicine by Kate Goldade and a colleague:
This article has been retracted: please see Elsevier Policy on Article Withdrawal (http://www.elsevier.com/locate/withdrawalpolicy).
This article has been retracted at the request of the Editors-in-Chief.
The article is based on work that was undertaken without obtaining prior informed consent to conduct human subjects research from the Author’s institution. The scientific community takes a very strong view on any ethical infringement in the conduct of research and apologies are offered to readers of the journal that this was not brought to our attention prior to publication.
Goldade — who won the an award in 2009 from the Society for Medical Anthropology for “Best Published Paper” for another study — did the work while at the University of Arizona, where she earned her PhD. The notice suggests that this line from the original paper was incorrect:
Ethical approval for the research was obtained from the Institutional Review Board at the University of Arizona.
The editors of the journal tell us that while the notice says the retraction was their request, Goldade — whom we have not been able to reach for comment — asked for it first. We’ve asked the University of Arizona how the lack of IRB approval became clear, and will update with anything we learn.
Goldade’s co-author, Kola Okuyemie, who leads the University of Minnesota’s program in health disparities, said through the university that he only interpreted the data and developed the manuscript, so did not have anything to do with the work related to the IRB approval.
The work was funded by “a Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad grant and a PEO Dissertation Completion Fellowship.”
Update, 3/8/13: Goldade, who has been traveling in Kenya doing fieldwork, tells us that no other papers will be affected:
…IRB approval was obtained for some of the interviews included in the paper but not all. IRB approval was not sought because I was between institutions (after PhD was conferred but before being hired as an assistant professor) which at the time of submission the manuscript did not occur to me. Moving forward it did not feel right to include any interview data collected without IRB approval and considering all of my options with mentorship at the medical school I decided to retract the paper entirely.
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