Updated on 20 November 2012
New Zealand health committee suggests ways to help the choking clinical trials sector
New Zealand's Health Committee submitted a 62-page report to New Zealand's Parliament making necessary recommendations to improve the existing clinical trials industry. The committee made 54 recommendations, comprising eight key recommendations and 46 detailed recommendations.
The report, titled 'Inquiry into improving New Zealand's environment to support innovation through clinical trials', made detailed recommendations so as to strengthen the clinical trials industry, which has a lot of potential.
Dr Paul Hutchison, chair, Health Select Committee, said the inquiry was initiated "because of concerns that New Zealand had lost its advantage as a good place to carry out clinical trials". "Most submissions we received backed up this view and called for improvement. The main elements of the system can be put right at almost no cost, and we believe the returns for New Zealand patients, the health service, and the economy will be significant," he said.
The eight key suggestions made in the report were:
1) The government should implement the recommendations of the report in order to achieve internationally competitive ethical review processes, holding patients' safety paramount; a simple process for the ethical and scientific review of single and multi-centre trials; and internationally cost-competitive services. This was led by the Ministry of Health, and has been completed.
2) The government monitor, as a performance measure, the time taken by Health and Disability Ethics Committees to process applications. The committees should process expedited reviews within 30 calendar days and other applications within 45 calendar days.