The External Medicine Podcast

Simon Whitney, MD, JD: Unethical Research, Unintended Consequences, and the Critical Need for IRB Reform

May 23, 2023 The External Medicine Podcast Episode 37
The External Medicine Podcast
Simon Whitney, MD, JD: Unethical Research, Unintended Consequences, and the Critical Need for IRB Reform
Show Notes

In this conversation, Daniel Belkin and Mitch Belkin interview Simon Whitney, MD, JD, about his book From Oversight to Overkill. They discuss the history of Institutional Review Boards (IRBs), including ethically questionable experiments such as Chester Southam's cancer cell injections, the Willowbrook experiment, as well as the US Public Health Service Syphilis Study (AKA Tuskegee experiment). They then discuss Peter Buxton, Henry Beecher, James Shannon, and the congressional oversight of federally funded research. Finally, they touch on the ISIS-2 study, Pronovost's checklist, OHRP's crackdown in the late 1990s, and discuss whether research is too safe, IRB infallibility, autonomy in the Belmont Report, and the risks and benefits of restricting research in the name of safety.

Who is Simon Whitney?

Simon Whitney, MD, JD, is a family medicine physician and ethicist. He previously taught at Baylor College of Medicine for 22 years. He is currently retired from the practice of medicine but continues to publish and teach medical ethics. He is the author of the book "From Oversight to Overkill: Inside the Broken System That Blocks Medical Breakthroughs—And How We Can Fix It."


Support the show

Follow us at @ExMedPod
Subscribe to our Youtube channel
Consider supporting us on Patreon