Ethics application protocols for multicentre clinical studies in Canada: A paediatric rheumatology experience
LA Matheson | AM Huber | A Warner | AM Rosenberg
INTRODUCTION: Individual institutions govern research ethics applications and each must administer and regulate their own protocols. Variations in ethics review procedures and expectations among centres impose impediments to efficiently conducting multicentre studies.
METHODS: Observations relating to preparing multisite ethics documents for a study conducted by Canadian paediatric rheumatology investigators are described. Research ethics applications from the 12 participating centres were compared.
RESULTS: Although the applications were similar in their content, they differed in their formatting. All applications shared a commitment to ensuring that the study conformed to exemplary ethical standards.
CONCLUSIONS: There is wide variation in the multicentre clinical study ethics application process at the institutional level. Considering the common fundamental elements required by all ethics review boards, the present study conceptualized introducing a discipline-specific uniform ethics application process acceptable to all Canadian research ethics boards. This may be a more efficient strategy that could help lessen the burden of collaborative research.