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In August 2011, the federal Department of Health and Human Services released a final rule that updates the regulations governing conflicts of interest in research supported by, or proposed to be supported by, the Public Health Service (PHS). The new rule updates regulations that have been in place since 1995 and covers, among other research, that funded by the National Institutes of Health. Like the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, the new PHS conflict of interest rule aims to strengthen accountability, enhance transparency and increase governmental compliance oversight in light of the growth in biomedical research and the increasingly complex nature of relationships between industry sponsors and academic researchers. Institutions must comply with the new rule by Aug. 24, 2012. 

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