Duvar English

Some 27 medical organizations including the Turkish Medical Association (TTB) released a statement on May 15 slamming recent regulation that mandates Health Ministry approval for every COVID-19 study conducted in Turkey.

“Research in our country about the COVID-19 pandemic have been mandated to apply to the Health Ministry’s COVID-19 Scientific Research Evaluation Council,” the official statement noted.

Applications to the Health Ministry are mandated for research projects that have approval from an independent ethics board, or those who will apply to an independent ethics board.

“We require the Health Ministry stops intervening in and removes restrictive and complicating measures on scientific research that has been successfully conducted by ethics boards for years.”

The organizations noted that ethics boards evaluate every research that’s conducted in the country, based on universal principles.

“The Health Ministry is going against precedent to restrict scientific research when it should be encouraging it and providing resources to researchers.”

The organizations said that the ministry’s recent regulation hurts public health by limiting researchers’ access to information and called for an immediate retrieval of the regulation.

Some of the organizations that signed the official statement condemning the Health Ministry are the Turkish Medical Association’s (TTB) Board, Public Health Experts’ Association and the Turkish Critical Care Association.