What is an IRB?
An Institutional Review Board (IRB) is a group of people who review research to assure that it will be done in a way that protects the rights, safety, and welfare of research participants. IRBs review the informed consent process and document to ensure it provides enough information about the research in terms you can understand, so that you can decide whether or not you want to participate. If the board feels the research meets the criteria set forth by the federal government for IRB approval, they will approve the research. Sometimes they require changes to the research, the recruitment strategy, and/or the informed consent document. The IRB continues to provide oversight of the research until its completion.
When reviewing research, the IRB considers the following points, among other things, prior to granting approval of the research:
- The possible risks versus possible benefits of the study.
- The methods the research team will use to protect the privacy of participants in the study.
- The procedures to ensure that research participants are fully informed of their rights and that research participation is voluntary.
UNM joins an elite group of organizations in achieving full accreditation of its Human Research Protections Program (HRPP) from the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs, Inc. (AAHRPP). In achieving full AAHRPP accreditation, UNM has demonstrated its commitment to rigorous ethical standards that help protect research participants while ensuring that society continues to benefit from research.