Costa Rica News – It’s been five years that the Constitutional Court has been working on a law for biomedical research involving people in clinical trials. Many companies, at least 20, have left the country and moved to Panama or Guatemala where they can perform their studies without so much red tape.
No decisions taken by the court today can erase the years lost. In the last few years, medical research has come a long way and Costa Rican trials are years behind, since all human studies were halted pending a legal framework.
The Legislative Assembly approved the bill in the first debate, in November. It will have to go through a second debate and be left up to the next Congress, since the lawmakers complete this work year on April 30th. Not everyone sees things the same.
Some of the points already agreed upon include that consent is necessary and that the subject must have the right to withdraw from the study at any time and that PANI will be involved in any studies done on children who cannot speak up for their own rights.
“Recovering the level we had before, as one of the countries with the most research in Latin America, will be difficult, because many investors left the country,” said Guillermo Rodriguez, president of the Institute of Clinical Research. Scientists are hoping to revive their research projects in areas like cancer and chronic diseases.