What Caught Our Attention: We’ve found a fourth retraction for the unlicensed use of a common research tool, an issue we explored in depth for Science last year. Quick recap: When researchers use a copyrighted questionnaire (MMAS-8) without permission, they get a call from its creator Donald Morisky (or his representative), asking them to pay up — sometimes thousands of dollars. There’s another option: Retract the paper. That was the choice made by a group of researchers in Arkansas, who — in a nicely detailed notice — note that, since the scale was developed using federal funds, “they dispute the validity and reasonableness of Dr. Morisky’s demands in light of the National Institutes of Health’s Principles and Guidelines for Recipients of NIH Research Grants and Contracts on Obtaining and Disseminating Biomedical Research Resources.”
Journal: Journal of Palliative Medicine
Authors: Lindsey Dayer, Sarah Harrington, Bradley Martin
Affiliations: University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Arkansas, USA
The Brief Report article entitled, “Adherence to Adjuvant Neuropathic Pain Medications in a Palliative Care Clinic,” by Lindsey Dayer, Sarah Harrington, and Bradley Martin in the May 2016 issue of Journal of Palliative Medicine (JPM), [19(5): 538 – 541; DOI: 10.1089/jpm.2015.0230] requires a retraction due to a legal dispute regarding the eight-item Morisky Medication Adherence Scale (MMAS-8) which was adapted for use in the article.
Dr. Dayer’s article appropriately cited the original article in which the MMAS-8 scale appeared, and the original MMAS-8 article notes that the development of the scale was supported with federal funds. However, after publication of her article, Dr. Dayer was notified by Dr. Morisky’s legal counsel that Dr. Morisky asserted a copyright interest in the MMAS-8 scale, and that its reuse required both a substantial royalty payment and the licensed use of an electronic grading system developed by Dr. Morisky. Dr. Dayer and her institution dispute the validity and reasonableness of Dr. Morisky’s demands in light of the National Institutes of Health’s Principles and Guidelines for Recipients of NIH Research Grants and Contracts on Obtaining and Disseminating Biomedical Research Resources, 64 Fed. Reg. 72,090 (Dec. 23, 1999). As a result of Dr. Morisky’s demands, Dr. Dayer contacted the Editor of JPM and requested that the scale be removed from her published paper. The Editor agreed.
It is important to note that the retraction of Dr. Dayer’s article is not the result of any misconduct on her part or that of her team. The retraction serves to remove the published version of the article that contains the MMAS-8 scale, and replace it with a revised version that does not contain the tool or any references to it. The elimination of the scale does not alter the conclusions of the study.
Date of Article: February 2016
Times Cited, according to Clarivate Analytics’ Web of Science: 0
Date of Notice: February 2, 2018
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