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Essential Ethics and Compliance Made Easy

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    compliance_608x342CORAL GABLES, Fla. (October 30, 2017)—You’ve booked your flight and your hotel reservations for your overseas research trip, but did you check whether you need a license for your University of Miami-issued laptop or smart phone?

    Getting a license, or more accurately a license exemption, to take your encrypted mobile device overseas is probably not the first thing faculty, staff, and students think about—if they think about it at all. But why, under federal law, they are required to, will become clear November 7-9, when University Compliance Services and UHeath Compliance Services host their second annual Compliance and Ethics Week.

    Over the three days, an information fair and an array of talks on the U’s various compliance, ethics, and risk initiatives will take place on each campus, beginning with the Miller School of Medicine on Tuesday, November 7, followed by the Coral Gables campus on Wednesday, November 8, and concluding with the Rosenstiel School campus on Thursday, November 9. (View the schedule.)

    Aside from learning how to avoid compliance violations, faculty and staff have an added incentive to attend the info sessions. Those who participate in the Well ’Canes program can earn a maximum of 100 points for attending one or more of them.

    “Universities are, by their very nature, open to discussing and sharing ideas, but the bottom line is that we develop a significant amount of technology here, and a myriad of U.S. regulations require us to control those technologies and keep them out of the hands of foreign persons without the proper license or authorizing documentation,” said William Collins, the University’s director of compliance export control.

    As Collins notes, when most of us think about exports, we think of goods shipped overseas. But under federal regulations, controlled exports include information, ideas, and technologies that can be transferred by almost any imaginable means—a phone call, email, lab tour, meeting, computer data, social media, visual inspection, conversation, screen shot, shared drive, and, yes, a cell phone.

    For his hour-long talk, which will begin at 9:30 a.m. on all three campuses, Collins will be accompanied by Brent Wagner, a special agent with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Office of Export Enforcement. Among his topics, Wagner plans to describe current enforcement actions and scenarios, how UM staff, researchers, and students can protect UM technology, and the importance of ensuring that UM research, technology, and commodities do not fall into the wrong hands.

    Kenneth W. Goodman, the director of the Miller School of Medicine’s Institute for Bioethics and Health Policy and co-director of UM Ethics Programs, will kick off the discussion sessions at 9 a.m. on each campus with an overview on why ethics underlie every sound compliance program.

    “Ethics provides reasons to ground the rules we are obliged to follow, especially as members of a large and complex organization,” Goodman said. “Professionals do not follow rules merely because they are rules; they follow rules because they understand and appreciate the reasons and motives for making rules in the first place.”

    Also presenting on all three campuses will be Bonnie Muschett, UM’s Title IX coordinator, who will explain the practical applications of UM’s sexual misconduct policy at 2:30 p.m. on the Coral Gables and marine campuses and at 3:30 p.m. on the medical campus; and Helenmarie Mirle Blake, UM’s chief privacy and data integrity officer, whose topic should interest anyone with a cell phone: “Stripped! Don’t let your mobile device leave you exposed!”

    Blake’s talk is slated to begin at 11:30 a.m. on each campus, and will roll into the lunch hour and the information fairs, which will operate from noon until 3 p.m. on each campus’s designated day—at the medical school’s Schoninger Research Quadrangle, at the University Rock Plaza on the Gables campus, and at the Breezeway on the marine campus.

    Representatives from such departments as Athletics Compliance, the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program, Billing Compliance, Environmental Health and Safety, the Office of Research Administration, and Human Resources will be on hand at each fair to distribute information and answer questions about their programs and responsibilities.

    In other talks offered on both the Gables and marine campuses, Theresa Semmens, UM’s chief information security officer, will explain why protecting data is a shared responsibility at 10:30 a.m.; Philip Profeta, associate vice president and chief supply chain officer, will discuss how to avoid conflicts of interest in purchasing and procurement decisions at 1:30 p.m.

    On the medical campus, Joshua Boxer, executive director of regulatory compliance, also will discuss conflicts of interest, but with a message geared to health care professionals. His talk, “Who Pays for Your Doctor’s Lunch?” begins at 10:30 a.m.

    Also on the medical campus, Barry Grosse, chief compliance officer for health affairs, will discuss UHealth’s efforts to promote a culture of transparency at 1:30 p.m., and will be followed at 2:30 p.m. by the management team of the Office of Research Compliance and Quality Assurance (RCQA). In its session, “Compliance ‘U’ Can Tweet About,” the RCQA team will review compliance data from the past 10 years and show how the University’s adherence to the regulations and requirements governing human-subject research improved during the decade—thanks to its improved and ongoing collaboration with investigators.

    All talks on the medical campus will take place in Dominion Tower, room 300; on the Gables campus in the Shalala Student Center’s Vista Room; and on the marine campus, in the auditorium. For a complete schedule of times and locations of Ethics and Compliance Week activities, view the flyer.

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