Research ethics review is a process of initial and ongoing review and monitoring of research involving human participants.
The process requires the evaluation of all proposed research by an independent committee (REB) of experts which examines the research study through the lens of prospective participants. The REB's assessment of a proposed study's ethical acceptability is guided by the core principles of research ethics (i.e., respect for persons, concern for welfare, and justice).
The underlying value of research ethics review is respect for human dignity. The review process ensures that research involving humans is sensitive to the inherent worth of all human beings and the respect and consideration they are due.
There are two categories of research ethics review, each with different application processes:
Behavioural studies are not clinical in nature and do not involve any invasive procedures. Studies may involve interviews, observations, or the administration of questionnaires or tests.
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Clinical studies include surgery, clinical interventions, the testing of drugs, medical devices and rehabilitation exercise programs, and/or the analysis of clinical data obtained from medical records or studies of a clinical nature involving the linkage of data from existing databases.
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A UBC REB Metrics Report is created annually (starting in 2015 covering 2012 - 2015) to reflect UBC-affiliated REB review trends.