Implementing the Campus Revised Continuing Review Policy
The campus continuing review policy has been revised to allow the IRB to determine that studies meeting specific criteria no longer require continuing review. Please see the Continuing Review Decision Tree
for the specific criteria a study must meet to qualify for no further continuing reviews.
Why is this change being made?
This change to the continuing review policy is being made for two primary reasons:
- To leverage flexibility in the existing federal regulations in order to reduce administrative burden for study teams and IRBs alike.
- To begin preparing for pending changes to federal regulations which will allow some studies to be exempt from the requirement to submit a continuing review.
When did the HS and MR IRBs begin implementing the revised policy?
The IRBs began implementing a revised policy as of October 2, 2017. This policy was further revised as of February 19, 2018.
How will the revised policy be implemented for new studies?
Most applications that will qualify for exception from the continuing review policy will be reviewed by the MR IRB. As a result, all applications for new studies submitted to the MR IRB on or after October 2nd will be assessed to determine whether they qualify for exception from continuing review. The revised policy was implemented for applications reviewed by the HS IRB in February 2018.
How will the revised policy be implemented for studies already approved by the IRB?
Studies currently approved by the IRB will be assessed at the next continuing review to determine whether they qualify for an exception to ongoing continuing review. The IRB needs to determine on a study-by-study basis whether the criteria of the revised policy are met and this most efficient way to accomplish this. This same process will be used for assessing the impact of the revised Common Rule on currently approved studies starting in July 2018.
How will study teams be notified that their study does not require continuing review?
The continuing review status for each study will be communicated to study teams via the approval letter for a new application or, for ongoing studies, a continuing review. A new study status will be added to ARROW – called Approved with No CR – to also provide a clear indication of whether continuing review is required for each study.
If ongoing continuing review is not required for my study, do I still need to submit changes or reportable events?
Yes. Studies not requiring continuing review must continue to submit through ARROW the following to the IRB for review and approval:
- Changes of protocol, including personnel changes
- Funding updates
- Reportable events
- Closure reports
Can the continuing review requirements for my study change?
Yes. Studies that have been determined to not require ongoing continuing review may no longer qualify for this exception in certain situations, such as:
- Addition of federal funding (until the revised Common Rule becomes effective in July 2018)
- Changes to study procedures that result in the study becoming FDA-regulated
- Changes that result in the study becoming more than minimal risk
If a study no longer qualifies for an exception to continuing review, the study team will be notified during the approval process for the change that resulted in a switch in continuing review status.
How will revisions to the Common Rule impact the campus continuing review policy?
Revisions to the Common Rule will go into effect July 19, 2018. The revisions include a provision that will no longer require continuing review for studies that are not FDA regulated and:
- Qualify for expedited review or limited IRB review; or
- Have progressed to the data analysis stage or long-term follow-up limited to collecting data from procedures that subjects would undergo as part of clinical care.
The same processes described above will be used to implement the new continuing review exception. More information about how these and other revisions to the Common Rule will be implemented will be posted on the Common Rule Updates page
of the HS IRBs website and via its newsletter.