Minnesota Health System Conducted Research on Agitated Patients without Permission

August 8, 2018 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​Clinical trials run by a Minnesota health system, in which "agitated" patients were sedated by paramedics without permission, have raised ethical concerns from medical experts, according to a July 25, 2018, article in the Washington Post. Paramedics used either the anesthetic ketamine or midazolam, another powerful drug, the article said, to sedate patients, who were only later informed that they had been part of a medical study. Typically, the article said, patients must be asked if they want to participate in a research study. Since agitated patients are probably unable to give consent, researchers sought, and were granted, a waiver to administer the drugs.

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