Altman and Moher’s editorial in the BMJ describes how the failure to publish all research findings biases the literature towards studies that achieved statistical significance.
“By not making results of their research easily accessible, researchers are withholding knowledge, in contravention of the Declaration of Helsinki. Not only are current practices questionable on moral and scientific grounds, failure to publish all research findings is a massive waste of scarce resources and diminishes the social value of the research. Researchers and funding organisations also fail the public when research findings are published in a misleading or inadequate way. Scientifically, this harms systematic reviewers who want to aggregate all of the evidence. Reviewing a partial picture provides biased and less precise estimates of effectiveness and safety than when the full information is used, and it may compromise the identification of what works best for patients.”
Read the full editorial here:
Not surprisingly, the editorial fails to connect clinical research with the validation of accreditation which now affects many clinical measurements.
Just as no-one should be administering medical treatments that have not been proven, so no group of medical, paramedical or scientific staff should be agreeing to ISO accreditation without assessing the very low standard of proof that supposedly validates this financial blood-letting.