If a favourable opinion is given, the researcher receives a letter confirming ethical approval by the REC in the same way as for review by full committee.
The sub-committee may refer the application to full committee if there are material ethical issues requiring further consideration within the usual 60 day time-scale.
Research suitable for proportionate review is determined by the No Material Ethical Issues Tool, which is summarised below.
At present, this service is run as a pilot and only available in certain areas. The draft harmonised Governance Arrangements for Research Ethics Committees (GAfREC) published for comment by the Department of Health makes provision for Proportionate Review to be introduced by the Research Ethics Service. When the harmonised GAfREC is finalised, we envisage introducing the service more widely.
What are the benefits of proportionate review?
How we determine if research has ‘no material ethical issues’
You can view the No Material Ethical Issues Tool (pdf, 64 KB) on the NRES website.