It is common practice to offer payment to research subjects, either to enhance recruitment or to enable people to participate without financial sacrifice. While common, the practice is highly contentious. Some worry that paying subjects unduly influences their choice to participate, by impairing their judgment or by giving them an offer they cannot refuse. Others argue that we do not pay research participants enough, making participation for research overly burdensome for some already marginalized populations. This panel will debate these concerns. Questions that will be discussed include the following: Is it ever wrong to offer money for research participation? Is some payment too much or too little? What alternatives to monetary compensation are appropriate? Who should decide how much research subjects get paid?
Professor Persad’s research interests center on the legal and ethical dimensions of health insurance, health care financing (both domestic and international), and markets in health care services, as well as professional ethics and the regulation of medical research. He has been selected as a 2018-21 Greenwall Faculty Scholar in Bioethics for an ongoing research project on health insurance and protection against financial risk. He recently co-authored a paper on the ethics of differential payment to research participants in the same study, see: https://jme.bmj.com/content/45/5/318.
This program is co-sponsored by the Office of Research with support from the OSUMC Center for Bioethics and the College of Public Health.