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Aurora Health Care Research Program Receives National Recognition

Friday, September 19, 2008

Aurora first in state to be recognized by Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs.

Milwaukee, Wis. – Aurora Health Care has received accreditation from the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs (AAHRPP). Aurora is the first health care organization in the state to voluntarily seek and achieve this accreditation, which has standards that exceed federal regulations and one of only 138 organizations in the nation to have done so.

Organizations accredited by AAHRPP must demonstrate that they have built extensive safeguards into every level of their biomedical, behavioral or social sciences research involving human participants and that they adhere to the highest standards for research. AAHRPP’s standards exceed federal regulations by requiring organizations to address conflicts of interest, to provide community outreach and education and to apply the same stringent protections to all research involving human participants. (Under federal regulations, such protections are mandated only for federally sponsored or regulated research.)

Aurora Health Care’s accreditation is valid for three years.

“Aurora’s top priority is finding betters ways to provide patients the very best in care, and one of the key ways to do that is to participate in clinical trials and research,” said Gail Buenger, vice president of Operations and Institutional Official for Aurora Health Care. Lori Roesch, manager of Aurora’s Research Subject Protection Program, said, “Each year Aurora is involved in about 500 studies that give patients as well as doctors opportunities to advance and improve health care.

“The AAHRPP accreditation is an extra step in assuring the very highest quality,” she said.

According to AAHRPP, the accreditation process typically results in system-wide improvements that enhance protections for research participants and promote high-quality research.

Before 2001, there were no human subject accrediting bodies in the U.S., Roesch said, and Aurora was an early advocate for such accreditation. In 2004, Aurora became the 6th organization in the nation to receive accreditation from a prior accrediting body that no longer exists.

About the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs, Inc.: AAHRPP is a non-profit organization that works with organizations that conduct human research to raise the level of protection for research participants. AAHRPP accredits organizations that can demonstrate they provide participant safeguards that surpass the threshold of state and federal requirements. The accreditation program utilizes a voluntary, peer-driven, educational model. For organizations interested in learning more about accreditation, visit

About Aurora: Aurora Health Care is a not-for-profit Wisconsin health care provider and a nationally recognized leader in efforts to improve the quality of health care. Aurora offers services at sites in more than 90 communities throughout eastern Wisconsin. For more information, visit


Contact: Linda Steiner (414-647-3348)

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