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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 64067 Find in a Library
Title: DEMISE OF PRISON MEDICAL RESEARCH
Journal: CORRECTIONS MAGAZINE  Volume:5  Issue:4  Dated:(DECEMBER 1979)  Pages:4-9,13-14
Author(s): S GETTINGER; K KRAJICK
Corporate Author: Criminal Justice Publications, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: Criminal Justice Publications, Inc
New York, NY 10017
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: PRO AND CON ISSUES RELATING TO PRISON MEDICAL RESEARCH ARE REVIEWED. FORMER PRACTICES ARE DESCRIBED AND ARGUMENTS CITED IN THEIR DEFENSE. THE CURRENT DEMISE OF PRISON EXPERIMENTATION IS EXPLAINED.
Abstract: ONCE A WIDESPREAD PRACTICE, PRISON MEDICAL RESEARCH NOW REMAINS ONLY IN THREE PRISON PROGRAMS. HERE INMATES ARE USED TO TEST NEW AND REFORMULATED DRUGS UNDER STRICT CONTROL OF THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION (FDA), AS WELL AS CAUTIOUS DRUG COMPANY EXECUTIVES AND DOCTORS. A FEW YEARS AGO 85 PERCENT OF ALL DRUG TESTING WAS DONE IN PRISONS; NOW IT IS DOWN TO 15 PERCENT. ARGUMENTS THAT CAUSED THIS CHANGE CONTEND THAT PRISON ENVIRONMENTS ARE COERCIVE AND THAT INMATE HEALTH AND FREE CHOICE IS EXPLOITED FOR DRUG COMPANY PROFITS. ON THE OTHER HAND, PRISON RESEARCH SUPPORTERS ARGUE DRUG STUDIES REQUIRE CAREFULLY CONTROLLED GROUPS THAT CAN BE MONITORED AS RESEARCH PROGRESSES, AND THAT PRISONERS ARE IDEAL SUBJECTS FOR RELIABLE TESTS. THE MOST ENTHUSIASTIC SUPPORTERS OF THE PROGRAMS ARE THEIR SUPPOSED VICTIMS--THE INMATES, WHO CAN MAKE MANY TIMES THE RATE OF PAY THEY GET FOR PRISON LABOR AND WHO ARE HAPPY TO ESCAPE FROM THE DANGEROUS AND UNCERTAIN LIFE IN PRISON YARDS. IN THE PAST, PARTICIPATION IN DRUG TESTING WAS REWARDED WITH SHORTER PRISON STAYS, BUT THIS PRACTICE HAS BEEN BANNED. IN SOME PROJECTS THE DRUGS THEMSELVES PROVIDED ADDED INCENTIVE FOR ADDICTED PRISONERS. DESPITE THE POST NUREMBERG INTERNATIONAL CODE OF ETHICS REGULATING EXPERIMENTS ON PRISONERS, MEDICAL RESEARCH IN PRISONS REACHED ITS APEX IN THE U.S. BETWEEN 1965 AND 1975. FDA REGULATIONS WERE FOLLOWED, AND MOST PRISONERS WERE UNHARMED. NEVERTHELESS, SOME POORLY RUN, MISPLANNED, AND DANGEROUS EXPERIMENTS WERE DISCOVERED BY THE PRESS. THIS RESULTED IN THE OVERALL PHASEOUT OF PRISON TESTING. ALTERNATIVE EXPERIMENTAL GROUPS MUST NOW BE SOUGHT OUT IN THE SOCIETY AT LARGE. ILLUSTRATIONS ARE INCLUDED. (MRK)
Index Term(s): Inmate compensation; Inmates as research subjects; Medical research; Prisoner's rights
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=64067

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