The director of CIESAL, Dr Eva Madrid Aris, has been appointed by Health Minister Ximena Aguilera as one of five members of the Ministerial Commission on Health Research Ethics (CMEIS). The appointment was revealed by Dr Ximena Luengo, coordinator of the Ministry of Health’s Bioethics office. Dr Madrid has been asked to make an impartial contribution within this ministerial commission and is among the professionals chosen directly by the Undersecretary of Health.
The role of CMEIS is to advise the Undersecretary of Public Health on all matters related to the Ethics of Scientific Research and to the existence and operation of institutional Scientific Ethics Committees throughout the country. Its five members are “of acknowledged competence and experience in the field of Scientific Research Ethics or in related regulatory systems.”
Eva Madrid qualified as a Surgeon at the Universidad de Chile, Valparaíso campus, and holds a PhD from the Universidad de Granada. She is a visiting professor at the Harvard school of Public Health and the head of the Cochrane Centre at the Universidad de Valparaíso. Dr Madrid has extensive experience in the field of Medical Ethics. For many years she was a member, and later president, of the Fondecyt Bioethics Committee and president of the Scientific Ethics Committee of the Universidad de Valparaíso. She currently holds a chair in Evidence-based Medicine and Scientific Method, and is director of the CIESAL Health Research Centre of the UV Faculty of Medicine. In addition, she is associate editor of the British Medical Journal Evidence-based Medicine and is the co-editor-in-chief of Medwave, a Chilean medical journal focussed on health evidence.
The remit of the CMEIS includes: recommending to the Ministry of Health the quality standards that Scientific Ethics Committees must meet in order to be certified; certifying Scientific Ethics Committees and reaccrediting them every three years according to the previously established quality standards; ensuring that the certification process is carried out through a peer review process, with reviewers to be chosen by the CMEIS from a list made up of the members of certified Scientific Ethics Committees; and strengthening the competencies of the members of the network of registered Committees and improving their ability to better carry out their functions. Additionally, the CMEIS may, where there exists a difficulty in interpretation, decide whether or not a research project requires a favourable report from a Scientific Ethics Committee.
We wish Dr Madrid success in her duties as a member of the ministerial commission.