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IRB Guidance During the Pandemic

CURRENT COVID-19 INFECTION RISK LEVEL:

High-Moderate Button

Please see the IRB's COVID-19 Guidelines & Requirements, guideline 6 for masking and social distancing requirements.

Safe Human Subjects Research During the Pandemic

The IRB recognizes the importance of Human Subjects Research (HSR) to the campus community and society at large. Continuing HSR during the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic is an important function of faculty, staff, and students of the university.

To resume or begin safe HSR during the pandemic, the IRB developed principles, guidelines, and requirements for the safe conduct of HSR in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Here is a summary of what TAMUT researchers need to know if they are conducing HSR during the pandemic:

  • The overarching guideline is that all work that can be performed remotely/online should be performed remotely/online. This includes research activities, researcher meetings, etc.
  • As of September 1, 2021, TAMUT IRB assesses the current COVID-19 infection risk level as HIGH-to-MODERATE. Please prepare your new application relevant to the guidelines below. The pandemic situation develops fast and unexpectedly. Thus, we recommend preparing your protocol in response to the four risk levels outlined in the guidelines.
  • Researchers beginning or resuming research activities must read and abide by the principles, guidelines, and requirements specified in the Guidelines and Requirements for Resuming or Starting Humans Subjects Research During the Pandemic, available for download (PDF file): CLICK HERE.
  • Researchers beginning or resuming in-person research activities must complete and submit a Research Protocol Infection Control Plan form available for download (Word template): CLICK HERE.

Anyone concerned about the safety of conducting or participating in Human Subjects Research at TAMUT, or observing violations of IRB requirements for safe human subjects research during the pandemic, should contact the IRB Chair at IRB@tamut.edu or 903-223-3009. Confidentiality can be maintained within the context of university, local, state, and federal policies and laws.

More information and links about HSR during the pandemic:

  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Human Research Protections Guidance on Coronavirus: CLICK HERE.
  • U.S. Centers for Disease Control page on How to Protect Yourself and Others: CLICK HERE.
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