BCEHI launches website, prepares to implement harmonized review models

11 September 2014

A new website that will act as the primary portal for news, resources, and information about the BC Ethics Harmonization Initiative is now available at www.bcethics.ca.

The launch of this website is an important step for BCEHI. It will support public communication about the initiative and provide resources to help researchers, research ethics board administrators, and reviewers understand and implement harmonized approaches to ethics review.

The site will grow and evolve with BCEHI as the initiative moves towards its goal of creating efficient, coordinated, and high-quality processes for multi-jurisdictional human health research. Additional information and resources will be added to the site as they become available.

BCEHI nearing implementation of harmonized review models

MSFHR is actively working with the BCEHI’s partner organizations to facilitate the development and implementation of harmonized ethics review models for research involving human subjects.

An advisory committee representing the partner organizations, the main geographic areas of BC, and key areas of expertise met twice over the summer months with excellent progress. The committee developed a harmonized ethics review model for minimal-risk studies that has been endorsed by the partner organizations’ senior leadership for pilot implementation and evaluation over six months, starting in October.

Advisory committee members will be meeting with research ethics board members and administrators in their respective organizations during September to share and provide orientation to the model prior to implementation.

The means by which the model will be evaluated is integral to this pilot implementation. Evaluation tools are under development and will be finalized prior to implementation of the pilot. The aim is to seek feedback from the stakeholders involved in each harmonized review, including researchers, REB members, and REB administrators, using standard metrics and a post-review survey.

A draft model for the review of above-minimal-risk studies has also been developed by the advisory committee. Refinement of this model is underway and will be followed by a consultation with internal REB members and administrators to gain feedback prior to pilot implementation, which is anticipated later this fall.

The pilot implementation of these models is a key deliverable in achieving harmonized ethics review in BC.

Learn more

> BC Ethics Harmonization Initiative website