Celia B. Fisher, PhD, the director of the Center for Ethics Education at Fordham University in New York, has been appointed to a committee that will advise the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on issues of human research protection.
Fisher was recently the chair of APA's Ethics Code Task Force and is currently serving as bioethicist-in-residence and visiting professor of psychology at Yale University.
The committee to which Fisher has been appointed, the Secretary's Advisory Committee on Human Research Protection (SACHRP), replaces the National Human Research Protections Advisory Committee (NHRPAC), which was dissolved last September when its original two-year charter expired.
Fisher was one of four candidates nominated for SACHRP by the Federation for Behavioral, Psychological and Cognitive Sciences (FBPCS). FBPCS was invited to nominate candidates by the office of Tommy Thompson, the Secretary of HHS, after the federation expressed concerns that the new committee might not include representatives of the behavioral and social sciences.
Another psychologist, Susan Weiner, PhD, also has been appointed to the committee. Weiner is the president and founder of Children's Cause, a nonprofit organization that seeks to improve the care of childhood cancer patients and their families. She received her doctorate in developmental psychology from Columbia University.
Weiner fills a spot on the committee left vacant by the resignation of Jonathan Moreno, PhD, a University of Virginia bioethicist. Moreno, a former member of NHRPAC, refused to serve on SACHRP because of the inclusion of embryos as "human subjects" in the committee's charter and because of the dearth of patient advocates on the committee--a problem that Weiner's appointment partly solves.
In addition to psychologists Fisher and Weiner, the membership of SACHRP includes physicians, research administrators, lawyers and representatives of professional societies. Further information about the committee is available through the Web site of the Office of Human Research Protection at http://ohrp.osophs.dhhs.gov.