ISPOR Code of Ethics 2017

As the leading health economics and outcomes research (HEOR) professional society, ISPOR has a responsibility to establish a uniform, harmonized international code for ethical conduct. ISPOR has updated its 2008 Code of Ethics to reflect the current research environment. This code addresses what is acceptable and unacceptable in research, from inception to the dissemination of its results. There are nine chapters: 1 – Introduction; 2 – Ethical Principles respect, beneficence and justice with reference to a non-exhaustive compilation of international, regional, and country-specific guidelines and standards; 3 – Scope HEOR definitions and how HEOR and the Code relate to other research fields; 4 – Research Design Considerations primary and secondary data related issues, e.g., participant recruitment, population and research setting, sample size/site selection, incentive/honorarium, administration databases, registration of retrospective observational studies and modeling studies; 5 – Data Considerations privacy and data protection, combining, verification and transparency of research data, scientific misconduct, etc.; 6 – Sponsorship and Relationships with Others (roles of researchers, sponsors, key opinion leaders and advisory board members, research participants and institutional review boards (IRBs) / independent ethics committees (IECs) approval and responsibilities); 7 – Patient Centricity and Patient Engagement new addition, with explanation and guidance; 8 – Publication and Dissemination; and 9 – Conclusion and Limitations.


The Code of Ethics was distilled down to 72 summary points interwoven within its 9 chapters.


Santos J, Palumbo F, Molsen-David E et al. ISPOR Code of Ethics 2017 (4th Edition) Value Health 2017; (20) 1227-1242.


Next Edition of the ISPOR Code of Ethics: Is It Setting Us up for the Era of Digitized Health Care?
Brigitta Monz, MD, MPH, MA Ethics in Medicine, Global Head Real World Data Science - Immunology, Infectious Diseases, Ophthalmology & Neuroscience, F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd., Basel, Switzerland

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