ISCT Statement on International Travel to the US and Other Recent US Government Executive Orders
Monday, February 6, 2017
Dear ISCT members,
Recent US governmental executive orders, including the proposed travel ban, create confusion and uncertainty in all aspects of society, notably including respect and support for science. Scientific discovery and development requires the free exchange of information between investigators worldwide. The Executive Order of January 27, 2017 prohibiting entry to the US of individuals from specific countries challenges the openness and transparency of scientific discussion and has an immediate and significant negative impact on scientists and physicians from these countries by preventing travel to the United States to initiate or continue education or training, engage in collaborations with colleagues, or attend and present their research at scientific meetings. This further compromises scientific activities of US academic institutions, government institutions, and industry.
Central to the ISCT mission are continuous global academic collaborations, partnerships between companies, effective sharing of regulatory frameworks and free exchange of ideas. This includes all involved from leaders in the field to trainees to international patient participation in research and clinical trials. The restriction of movement of clinical trial patients may have particularly significant impact on those with rare or orphan diseases where international collaborations are necessary.
ISCT is exploring all channels to work together with other professional scientific and medical societies, patient advocacy groups and industry to jointly express our concerns and find ways forward in this difficult environment. The cell therapy sector, perhaps more than any other, requires free global movement of scientists, clinicians, or patients. Any restriction of this movement will affect the ability for the cell therapy industry to develop and commercialize safe and effective treatments worldwide. We will continue to stay in touch with you on these important issues via The Telegraft, updates on the ISCT website, and ongoing communications from the ISCT leadership.
We further support a petition organized by numerous US Nobel Laureates condemning the ban and urge you to join at https://notoimmigrationban.com.
The ISCT Global Executive Committee