Multi-centre research in Australia: analysis of a recent National Health and Medical Research Council-funded project

Timothy J Kidd, Guy B Marks, Peter T P Bye, Claire E Wainwright, Philip J Robinson, Barbara R Rose, Colin Harbour, Scott C Bell, ACPinCF INVESTIGATORS

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Human research ethics committees provide essential review of research projects to ensure the ethical conduct of human research. Several recent reports have highlighted a complex process for successful application for human research ethics committee approval, particularly for multi-centre studies. Limited resources are available for the execution of human clinical research in Australia and around the world.

METHODS: This report overviews the process of ethics approval for a National Health and Medical Research Council-funded multi-centre study in Australia, focussing on the time and resource implications of such applications in 2007 and 2008.

RESULTS: Applications were submitted to 16 hospital and two university human research ethics committees. The total time to gain final approval from each committee ranged between 13 and 77 days (median = 46 days); the entire process took 16 months to complete and the research officer's time was estimated to cost $A34 143.

CONCLUSIONS: Obstacles to timely human research ethics committee approval are reviewed, including recent, planned and potential initiatives that could improve the ethics approval of multi-centre research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1051-5
Number of pages5
JournalRespirology (Carlton, Vic.)
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2009


  • Australia
  • Biomedical Research
  • Ethics, Research
  • Humans
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic
  • National Health Programs

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Multi-centre research in Australia: analysis of a recent National Health and Medical Research Council-funded project'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this