Ask the right questions of prospective CROs, research sites, and independent IRBs

Tip Sheets

AAHRPP accreditation is the best indicator that a CRO, independent IRB, ethics committee, or research site meets high standards for research quality, ethics, and protections. That’s why sponsors increasingly ask about AAHRPP accreditation before contracting for research services.

The easiest way to verify that an organization is AAHRPP accredited is to ask some straightforward questions:


Q: Are you AAHRPP accredited?

If the answer is “yes,” you will find the organization listed under accredited organizations.

Q: Are you seeking AAHRPP accreditation?
 Organizations that are not yet accredited may be in the midst of the AAHRPP accreditation process. If that’s the case, ask for some specifics. For instance: How far along are they in the accreditation process? Have they submitted an application? Have they had a site visit?

Q: Has AAHRPP accreditation been withheld?
 If that’s the case, ask why—and what the organization is doing in response. Will the organization apply again? If so, when? And how will the organization address the concerns that AAHRPP has raised?

If an organization tells you it is “AAHRPP approved,” take the extra step of checking the list of accredited organizations. No organization receives AAHRPP approval unless it is accredited.