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Process is more efficient, flexible, and rigorous
WASHINGTON, D.C., December 18, 2009—Two hospitals joined four other organizations last week to bring the total number of clients accredited by the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs (AAHRPP) to 200.
At the same time, AAHRPP continued to help organizations achieve and maintain accreditation through a process that is more efficient and flexible than ever before—and equally rigorous in ensuring the safety and health of those who participate in research—by extending the period between reaccreditations for organizations that have earned the AAHRPP seal.
Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and South Shore Hospital in South Weymouth, Massachusetts, won accreditation along with HealthPartners Research Foundation in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and three other organizations: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Independent Investigational Review Board, Inc., in Plantation, Florida; and Liberty IRB, Inc., of DeLand, Florida. The 200 accredited organizations represent nearly 1,000 entities.
Extended to five years from three
After streamlining the accreditation standards in October, AAHRPP’s Board of Directors voted on Tuesday to lengthen the period between reaccreditations to five years from three, beginning January 1, 2010. The period between initial accreditation and reaccreditation remains at three years.
Also effective on January 1, the Board voted to revise its annual reporting procedure to request more specific information about organizational changes, resource changes, changes in program scope, changes in program delivery, and catastrophic events. It also instituted the use of status reports and limited site visits to resolve any outstanding non-compliance with AAHRPP standards.
AAHRPP’s Council on Accreditation may now request a status report to gain information about activities an organization is taking to achieve compliance with a standard or to report on the progress of changes within a human protection program. The Council may also request a limited site visit when it wishes to verify that information.
AAHRPP is a non-profit organization that works with organizations that conduct human research to raise the level of protection for research participants. Available to organizations worldwide that conduct biomedical, behavioral or social sciences research involving human participants, the accreditation program utilizes a voluntary, peer-driven educational model.
Organizations must demonstrate that they have built extensive safeguards into every level of their research operation and that they adhere to the high ethical standards. For organizations interested in learning more about accreditation, visit aahrpp.org.