Guidelines of the Ethics Review Committee of Faculty of Indigenous Medicine (ERCFIM)
The Faculty of Indigenous Medicine (FIM), University of Colombo deeply considered the importance of establishing an Ethical Review Committee to approve the research projects in Indigenous/ Ayurveda system of medicine in order to maintain the validity and quality of research. So the Ethics Review Committee of the Institute of Indigenous Medicine was established in 2011. Then it has been decided to formulate the guidelines for the Ethics Review Committee to function efficiently to encourage the researchers. The Research and Higher Degrees Committee (RHDC) and Board of Management of the IIM, University of Colombo had approved the code of guidelines for the Ethics Review Committee of Faculty of Indigenous Medicine (ERCFIM).
Since 2014, ERCFIM has been a member of Forum of Ethics Review Committee Sri Lanka (FERCSL). Further it has been approved by the Ministry of Health in 2019.
Awareness and trends are increasing in obtaining the ethical clearance for research project proposals. The various professionals in Ayurveda, indigenous and scientific sectors have to be in par with the modern researchers in adapting the procedure for a successful result in the research they are conducting. Obtaining the ethical clearance and approval from the ERC is a pre-requisite to produce to regulate as well as to encourage candidates who intend to engage in research activities in the field of Indigenous/ Ayurveda systems of medicine in Sri Lanka.
Guidelines of the ERCFIM have been formulated to adhere the use of standard operating procedures by Ethics Review Committee of the Institute of Indigenous Medicine (ERCIIM) that reviews biomedical research proposals involving human participants, tissue and data; and animals used in research in Ayurveda/Traditional/Indigenous Systems of medicine in Sri Lanka.
Further these guidelines ensure that clinical trial participants are exposed to minimal risks in relation to any benefits that might result from the research.
The objectives of the ERCFIM are to:
- Protect the mental and physical welfare,rights, dignity and safety of human participants and animals used in research
- Facilitate ethical research by effective and efficient review and monitoring processes.
- Review researchin accordance with national and/or local regulations, as well as with World Health Organization (WHO) Good Clinical Practices (GCPs) guidelines
- Promote evidence based bio medical research for upgrading the Ayurveda/Traditional/Indigenous and Integrated systems of medicine to ensure safety and rights of research participants, researchers and general public