At SFL, we are committed to operate in an ethical manner on the basis of Integrity, Fairness and Respect in all our activities. SFL aims to increase its value through its business activities. This goal can only be achieved by respecting the needs of the individual, society and the environment. We will continue to operate in close dialogue with our business partners, employees and other stakeholders to remain conscious of these needs and will run our business on the basis of our Corporate Principles.
In order to maintain the rapid advances made in medicine and biotechnology, there is a need to conduct research involving humans. However, persisting global disparities in the level of available health care provide a backdrop for the conduct of research involving human subjects. The challenges that face both public and private sector researchers remain considerable, varied and dynamic. The ethics guidance that researchers require to meet the challenges must be responsible and responsive, and must be designed to cope with often contentious and contested issues.The need for research ethics is perhaps never stronger – or more complex – than when dealing with clinical trials, especially when carried out in low-resource settings. Researchers must be both encouraged and empowered to undertake innovative clinical research, yet be provided with clear guidance, especially on protecting vulnerable communities and individuals. The responsibilities of corporations engaged in such clinical trials have been increasingly elaborated, as witnessed by the 2003 UN document “Norms on the Responsibilities of Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Regard to Human Rights.“
As has been acknowledged in the ICH Guidelines, following such Norms and GCP (Good Clinical Practice) is not only a matter of following legislation, it is also a matter of respecting international ethical standards for designing, conducting, recording and reporting trials that involve the participation of human subjects.It is in such complex areas that the services offered by SFL include providing research ethics support.