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Government will streamline clinical trial applications

Hon Tony Ryall

Minister of Health
6 September 2011
Media statement

Government will streamline clinical trial applications

The Government has today released its response to the Health Select Committee's Inquiry into improving New Zealand’s environment to support innovation through clinical trials.

Health Minister Tony Ryall says "The inquiry found the approvals process is robust but it can take months, sometimes years.

"Applicants need electronic filing, they want much tougher time limits and they need the ethics committees working in a more effective way."

Mr Ryall says, "The Government is committed to improving New Zealand's clinical trials environment, and has accepted many of the Health Committee's recommendations on how that should be achieved.

"Over the next ten months, the ethics committee approval process will be streamlined and simplified with;
• more comprehensive procedural rules
• internationally-competitive decision making timelines for ethics committees
• shorter, simpler application forms and;
• an easier application system online

"These changes will ensure that ethics committees are more efficient and transparent – and focusing more clearly on protecting participants in higher-risk research,” says Mr Ryall.

Mr Ryall says the Ministry of Health is also looking with other agencies at developing a national health research strategy.

"We are missing out on things, so that's why we need to speed the process up.

The government response is available at www.parliament.nz c

ENDS

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