ERC CLEARED FOR SIDCER RE-RECOGNITION BY FERCAP

Ethics Review Committee (ERC) of the Faculty of Medical Sciences (FMS) University of Sri Jayewardenepura (SJP) was established in 1995 to provide ethical oversight to research done by staff and students of FMS. The committee consists of affiliated and non-affiliated members from diverse specialties and scientific and non-scientific members with necessary expertise to evaluate the different types of protocols submitted to it.

ERC FMS is one of the eight ERCs in Sri Lanka recognised by the Sub Committee on Clinical Trials (SCOCT) of the Ministry of Health to evaluate and provide ethical approval for Phase 2 and 3 clinical trials that are conducted in Sri Lanka.

In 2012 ERC FMS underwent an external evaluation by a team of surveyors from the Forum for Ethical Review Committees in Asia and the Western Pacific (FERCAP) under its Strategic Initiative for Development of Capacity in Ethical Review (SIDCER). SIDCER provides the international community with means to build in-country human participant protection programs and a way to measure and provide accountability regarding the quality and effectiveness of ethical review worldwide.

SIDCER survey evaluates the ERC to ascertain whether it meets globally accepted standards in providing ethical oversight to research projects evaluated and approved by them. ERC FMS was able to meet the standards and was awarded SIDCER recognition in November 2012, thus becoming the second ERC in Sri Lanka to obtain international recognition.

The initial SIDCER recognition is granted for a period of 3 years and the ERC FMS USJ was re-evaluated by a team of Surveyors from FERCAP in March 2015. After a rigorous evaluation process, the ERC has been cleared for re-recognition and the recognition certificate and plaque will be awarded at the Annual General Meeting of FERCAP which will be held in Japan, in November 2015.

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