Researchers, Officials Dealing with VA Problems in L.A.

Studies are slowly restarting at the Veterans Administration Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System (VAGLAHS) after an unprecedented suspension of research last March 26.1 Investigators, meanwhile, are dealing with the fallout, and many are waiting to learn the fates of their protocols. They're also struggling still to understand why such drastic action was taken because of administrative failures. "We're all ... amazed this could happen, and I think all of us feel we're being blamed for what is

A. J. S. Rayl
May 9, 1999

Studies are slowly restarting at the Veterans Administration Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System (VAGLAHS) after an unprecedented suspension of research last March 26.1 Investigators, meanwhile, are dealing with the fallout, and many are waiting to learn the fates of their protocols. They're also struggling still to understand why such drastic action was taken because of administrative failures. "We're all ... amazed this could happen, and I think all of us feel we're being blamed for what is probably an administrative oversight ...," says George Sachs, who heads the membrane biology laboratory at the West LA Healthcare Center.

The story emerging is one of missing memos, a lack of communication, lack of follow-up, and lack of resources and support. VAGLAHS was hit with two suspensions last March--one from the VA headquarters and another from the National Institutes of Health's Office for Protection from Research Risks (OPRR), which terminated its...

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