European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) has published on 6th of januery a preliminary opinion on data protection related to scientific research.
Generally, there is an established ethical framework governing the particular field of health science, medical research and clinical trials. The interaction between the GDPR and the ethical framework is being discussed by European Data Protection Board (EDPB).
A special data protection regime is applying to the protection of scientific and research data. This spcecial regime have not any impact to the application of the principles rgeariding the personal data protection such as data minimization, transparency, lawfulness, purpose limitation.
However some derogation apply to the controler obligations which include presomption of compatibility of processing of scientific researh puroposes of data collected in commercial and other contexts provided appropriate safeguards are in place. This derigation is based on the assumption that the resaerch following the ethical framework serves the public interests.
For more information, the opinion is available on the EDPB website.