Vol VII, Issue 2 Date of Publication: May 07, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.20529/IJME.2021.064

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Good Clinical Practice (GCP) – an alternative, unarticulated narrative

Samir Malhotra
GCP has become the gold-standard for clinical research; initiated as a guideline pertaining to new drug development, it became a law in many countries, extending its scope to include all research. GCP is an excellent document that outlines the responsibilities of stakeholders involved in clinical research. Widely acclaimed, and deservedly so, it is considered as the “go-to” document whenever questions arise during the conduct of a clinical trial. This article presents another narrative, one that has not been articulated so far. Irrespective of whether we consider GCP as a law or a guideline, it is viewed as an “official” document, without the overt realisation that this was actually an initiative of the pharmaceutical industry, the “masters of mankind”. While the stress on documentation and monitoring in GCP was justified, its over-interpretation led to increased costs of clinical trials, with the result that smaller companies find it difficult to conduct the already expensive trials. GCP as an idea is now so entrenched within the scientific community that the real aims which led to its birth and that can be mined from the ICH website, like the need for market expansion, have remained largely unnoticed and undocumented, and are being expressed here.

Copyright and license
©Indian Journal of Medical Ethics 2021: Open Access and Distributed under the Creative Commons license ( CC BY-NC-ND 4.0),
which permits only non-commercial and non-modified sharing in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.

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