ASSESSMENT OF THE ETHICAL REVIEW PROCESS IN SUDAN

Authors

  • DYA ELDIN M. ELSAYED,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Alzaiem Alazhari University, Republic of the Sudan
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  • NANCY E. KASS

    Corresponding author
    1. Johns Hopkins University Bioethics Institute, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Broadway, Baltimore, USA
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Dya Eldin M. Elsayed, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Alzaiem Alazhari University, P. O. Box 1432, Khartoum North 13311, Republic of the Sudan. delsayed@sudanmail.net; Nancy E. Kass, ScD, Phoebe R. Berman Professor of Bioethics and Public Health, Johns Hopkins University Bioethics Institute, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Hampton House 344, 624 N. Broadway, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA. nkass@jhsph.edu

ABSTRACT

The ethical review process is an important component of contemporary health research worldwide. Sudan started an ethical review process rather late in comparison with other countries. In this study, we evaluate the structure and functions of existing ethics review committees. We also explore the knowledge and attitudes of Sudanese researchers toward the ethical review process and their experience with existing ethics review committees. There are four ethics review committees in the country; these committees have no institutional regulations to govern their functions. Furthermore, Sudan also lacks national guidelines. Ethical reviews are carried out primarily for studies seeking international funding and are almost always governed by the funding agencies’ requirements. Nearly half of respondents (46.3%) knew about the existence of research ethics committees in Sudan. Researchers reported a variety of experiences with the ethical review process; most of them were unable to define ‘ethics committee’.

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