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MultiCenter IRB Review

Accelerating the Institutional Review Board approval process

The Ohio State University has an agreement with Western IRB for review of industry initiated and sponsored clinical trials. Additionally, an Institutional Review Board (IRB) reciprocity agreement exists between the University and Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

The CCTS, in collaboration with the OSU ORRP and the eight institutions that compose the three CTSA sites in Ohio, has executed an agreement to allow one IRB to serve as the IRB of Record for multi-center clinical research studies involving these CTSA-affiliated institutions. The participating institutions include The Ohio State University, Nationwide Children's Hospital, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Case Western Reserve University, University Hospitals- Cleveland, MetroHealth, and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.

In support of the NIH Single IRB Review policy, OSU has now joined SMART IRB. With a current membership of over 57 institutions, SMART IRB, a platform designed to streamline and harmonize the IRB review process for multisite research. This effort was led by our CTSA consortium partner Harvard Catalyst, in collaboration with Dartmouth Synergy and University of Wisconsin-Madison, SMART IRB is intended to serve as a roadmap for institutions to implement the National Institute of Health (NIH) policy on the Use of Single Institutional Review Board for Multi-Site Research.

SMART IRB is a platform designed to ease common challenges and burdens associated with initiating multisite research and provide a roadmap for institutions to implement the NIH Single IRB Review policy. Through a flexible master IRB reliance agreement, standard operating procedures, and complementary tools and resources, SMART IRB supports and encourages collaboration and harmonization across the nation.

The CCTS is seeking to apply this “Reliant IRB” model to other collaborative research networks. The goal is to improve efficiencies in the IRB review and study implementation processes without compromising the regulatory and ethical environments that exist within any institution.

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