IIUM RESEARCH ETHICS COMMITTEE (IREC)
MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRMAN
MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRMAN
With the aggressive development of science, engineering and designing, moral issues frequently emerge. Ethics and ethical conduct have become a critical issue in the 21st Century. Scientists, technologists and engineers of all ages, students and senior professionals will encounter ethical challenges in their professional and personal lives.
Human research is research done with or about people, or their data or tissue. It can include: taking part in surveys, interviews or focus groups; undergoing psychological, physiological or medical testing or treatment; being observed by researchers; the collection and use of participants' body organs, tissues or fluids and access to their personal documents or other materials. However, other research activity with humans as participants may come within the Ethics Committee jurisdiction.
Ethics committees review proposed studies on human participants to ensure that they conform to internationally and locally accepted ethical guidelines, Monitor studies once they have begun, and where relevant, take part in follow-up action and surveillance after the end of the research. Committees have the authority to approve, reject or stop studies or require modifications to research protocols. They may also perform other functions, such as setting policies or offering opinions on ongoing ethical issues in research.
Review by a research ethics committee is required by international ethical standards governing research involving human participants, as well as by local law in many jurisdictions. In international cooperative research, review may be required by the laws of the country in which the research is being sponsored, even if it is not required by the host country’s own laws. Review is also essential if the researchers intend to publish the results of their investigation, as most medical journals will not publish the results of research that has not received the approval of a research ethics committee.
In Malaysia, Ethics Committee falls under the Malaysian Guideline for Good Clinical Practice (GCP) and the compliance is oversee by the Malaysian National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA). There are only a small number NPRA authorized Ethics Committee to give ethics approval on research in Malaysia and IIUM Research Ethics Committee (IREC) is one of them.
The main responsibility of IREC is to protect the interest of potential participants in the research and taking into account the potential risks and benefits for the community in which the research will be carried out. IREC ultimate goal is to promote high ethical standards in research within IIUM community and the Malaysian Community at large.
Prof. Dr. Nasser Muhamad Amjad,
Current IREC Chairman,
International Islamic University Malaysia,