Research ethics paperwork: what is the plot we seem to have lost?
Medicine, General & Internal
321208 Primary Health Care
321215 Health Care Administration
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AbstractResearchers in the United Kingdom now have to submit their study proposals to local research ethics committees using a nationally standardised form. The form overcomes the problem of inconsistencies in the paperwork required by different committees.(1 2) It is incredibly long, however, and threatens to overwhelm both committees and investigators with paperwork.(2-4) The administrative burden is likely to be increased by the advent of a research management and governance framework for health and social care(5) and the requirement for ethical clearance for all research by students on humans, including their tissues or data.(6) Current trends are not sustainable in terms of time, money, or their impact on the environment, and it seems we have lost the plot. In this article, I examine how we can streamline the process.