QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS OF RESEARCH PROTOCOLS PRESENTED TO THE INSTITUTIONAL ETHICS COMMITTEE IN A TEACHING INSTITUTION: A RE-SEARCH ON RESEARCH.
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AbstractIntroduction: Increase in research aptitude among students has resulted in a rise in the protocol numbers that get submitted to the Institutional Ethics Committee (IEC) for the purpose of recognition in dissertation, publications and forum presentations. Approval of research protocols by the IEC is considered the first barrier for most student researchers. Lack of solid concepts regarding dynamics involved in research seems to have resulted in unwarranted fear among students to pursue research. The current analysis attempts to identify areas of lacunae by retrospective reflection on the protocols submitted to the IEC in a teaching institution. Methodology: Retrospective Qualitative Analysis of 102 Protocols submitted by postgraduate medical students between January, 2013 to August, 2013 to the IEC were assessed by the following parameters: - Scientific and technical soundness of protocols, Ethical considerations and risk minimization strategies employed, Adequacy of documentation and scrutiny of Informed consent process, Temporal relationship between submission of protocols and commencement of the research procedures. Results: 79.41% of protocols were approved by the IEC. 95% of protocols were in proper format and adequate documentation.90% of the protocols were submitted for approval prior to the commencement of study. 20.59% of the submitted protocols were denied approval on the first hearing by the IEC. Discussion: We infer that majority of the postgraduate students are aware about the existence of guidelines in clinical research. The most common errors leading to non approval of research protocols are due to misjudgement regarding technical feasibility in available infrastructure, non comprehensive review of literature, non-addressal of ethical guidelines/risk minimisation strategies towards participants and inadequate documentation.
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