FMDS Research Ethics Committee Gears Up for DOST- PHREB Accreditation

The UPOU Faculty of Management and Development Studies – Research Ethics Committee (FMDS-REC) conducted a planning and training activity on 16-17 November 2016 in preparation for its accreditation to the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Health Research Ethics Board (DOST-PHREB).

The creation of a fully accredited research ethics committee is in line with FMDS thrust to ensure that the research conducted by its students and academic staff protects the rights of its human participants, the research activities undertaken are ethically sound, and the research is done in a way that serves the interest of society as a whole.

In the two-day activity, a writing workshop was done for the revision of the ethics Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) manual. The SOP manual was initially consolidated by Asst. Prof. Myra Oruga, Chair of the FMDS-REC and the Diploma in/Master of International Health (D/MIH) Programs; and Ms. Donna Mari Handa, Project Staff of both D/MIH and Master of Arts in Nursing (MAN) Programs. Among the topics in the SOP discussed are as follows: (1) Selection and appointment of Members; (2) Management of initial submissions and resubmissions; (3) Review of progress, final, and early termination reports and protocol amendments; (4) Expedited review; (5) Full review; (6) Preparing for a meeting; (7) Communicating REC decisions; (8) Managing active files; and (9) Archiving of terminated, inactive, or completed files. During the write-shop, it was suggested to make the REC accreditation university-wide and not only for the FMDS-REC. Thus, selection of REC members should ensure representation from the three faculties of studies in the university.

The activity is still in the initial stage of finalizing the SOP manual. As agreed in the writing workshop, a second wave of activities will be conducted sometime in January 2017 to finalize the SOP manual which is a primary requirement for PHREB accreditation.

Ms. Alvie Simonette Alip, UPOU Research and Publication Committee (RPC) Member, discussed the role of the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs (OVCAA) in UPOU ethics review while Ms. Bettina Evio, FMDS-REC Member (External), shared her experiences in reviewing manuscripts of students for ethical approval.

Present during the workshop were Ms. Alip; Ms. Evio; Mr. Larry Cruz, FMDS-RPC Member; Asst. Prof. Queenie Ridulme, FMDS-REC Member and MAN Program Chair, and Prof. Sheila Bonito, FMDS-REC Vice Chair.