Posted by: Lister | September 7, 2009

Review of Lancet 2006

The Lancet 2006 study was reviewed by the John Hopkins Centre, Feb 2009:

An examination was conducted of all the original data collection forms, numbering over 1,800 forms, which included review by a translator. The original forms have the appearance of authenticity in variation of handwriting, language and manner of completion. The information contained on the forms was validated against the two numerical databases used in the study analyses. These numerical databases have been available to outside researchers and provided to them upon request since April 2007.

Some minor, ordinary errors in transcription were detected, but they were not of variables that affected the study’s primary mortality analysis or causes of death. The review concluded that the data files used in the study accurately reflect the information collected on the original field surveys.

[...] A review of the original data collection forms revealed that researchers in the field used data collection forms that were different from the form included in the original protocol. The forms included space for the names of respondents or householders, which were recorded on many of the records. Use of the form and collection of names violated the study protocol submitted to the IRB and on which the IRB determined the study was exempt from full human subjects review.

[...] Because of violations of the Bloomberg School’s policies regarding human subjects research, the School has suspended Dr. Burnham’s privileges to serve as a principal investigator on projects involving human subjects research.

They didn’t evaluate methodology, because there are plenty of scientific forums for that.

(Via Tim Lambert).

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