Research Ethics Education Dissemination Rollout Plan for Emergencies Preparedness during Disease Outbreaks for the Management of Ethical Issues.

The National Research Ethics Board (NREB), in partnership with the European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) under the LiberHetica Project, conducted on 13th August 2021 a One-day Research Ethics Education Dissemination rollout Plan for Emergencies Preparedness during Disease outbreaks for the Management of Ethical Issues.

The NREB, as the national advisory institution responsible to regulate research ethics related activities in Liberia, has embarked on supporting institutional capacity strengthening framework in research ethics to create an awareness within our communities and to strive to protect the the people participating in research studies.

The NREB wants to create this awareness and strengthens the framework for research ethics at universities and institutions in Liberia that conduct studies on human subjects. Before we can engage in the proposed activities, we need to assess the capacities of the designated institutions through a capacity and institutional strengthening framework for the protection of human subjects.

Workshop on Human Research Ethics Training Manual – Liberia

UL-PIRE IRB and NREB convened a two-day workshop from 17-18 June 2021 during a retreat at Farmington Hotel, in nearby Margibi County (Liberia), in order to review the past twelve months activities. Of key importance was the finalization of the Human Research Ethics Training Manual to be used as a curriculum for ethics committees, researchers and students in Liberia. The main objective was to develop a manual that meets national and international standards.

 Outcomes

The workshop was attended by ULPIRE-IRB and NREB members. The team discussed the successes and challenges of the overall LiberHetica project relative to their respective activities. There was a review of all the LiberHetica project deliverables completed thus far and the processes in fast tracking the implementations of pending deliverables for Year 2 of the LiberHetica project. The workshop was successful as the intended objectives were achieved; it will form part of the Year 2 Project Report.

Gloria Manson Ross and Stephen B. Kennedy will attend the AVAREF-MRCT Ethics “train-the-trainer” course.

We are pleased to announce that Mrs. Gloria Manson Ross and Dr. Stephen B. Kennedy (LiberHetica project leaders) will attend the AVAREF-MRCT Ethics Training, planned in September 2021.

The African Vaccines Regulatory Forum (AVAREF) of the World Health Organization and the Multi-Regional Clinical Trials Center of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard (MRCT Center) are hosting a comprehensive training course on research ethics.
The course will be held on 6 days over the course of a 3-week period. This “train-the-trainer” course is intended to build capacity of individuals who are currently serving as members and chairs in research ethic committees (RECs), ethicists involved in research ethics review, and ethics educators.

African-European Symposium: Challenges in Research Ethics Assessment, 13:00 – 18:00 CET, May 25th, 2021.

The symposium,  organised by The Embassy of Good Science, in collaboration with EURECBERC-LusoAfriEthique, and LiberHetica, aims to facilitate the sharing of experiences and perspectives on research ethics assessment challenges between African and European experts. The symposium is organized into four sessions in which experts will present on challenges and solutions related to the theme of their session. A panel discussion will follow the speaker presentations.

The symposium will be live streamed here (no registration required):

https://zoom.us/j/92564963152?pwd=M3JnYWNYNEU2eVYrR3NrUG5vSWR1QT09

Passcode: sN6yzc

The EDCTP-funded LiberHetica project team is collaborating at organization of the European-African symposium “Research ethics assessment: challenges and opportunities experienced by African and European Experts”

The Embassy of Good Science, EUREC and LiberHetica are organizing the symposium “Ethical evaluation of research: challenges and opportunities experienced by African and European experts”, aimed at facilitating the sharing of experiences and perspectives on the challenges of ethical research evaluation. between African and European experts.

On Tuesday 25th May 2021, African and European experts will present on challenges and solutions related to ethical evaluation and research infrastructures, with a particular focus on the following topics: ethical education and teaching, independence of RECs, research ethics challenges during public health emergencies, practical/logistic and other challenges.

Stay tuned, updates will follow soon.

LiberHetica and SERCLe: two EDCTP-funded projects met to increase their impact on clinical trials ethics and regulatory in Liberia and Sierra Leone

The two EDCTP-funded projects LiberHetica and SERCLe met on 16 April 2021. Both projects primarily aim at strengthening the clinical trials oversight capacity at the ethics institutions, respectively in Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Similarities and complementary differences between projects were discussed and potential synergies were found during the meeting.

The new opportunities of collaboration identified will be developed, with the ultimate goal to further increase the impact of the projects, especially regarding the protection of participants in biomedical research and to promote the safety and efficacy of medicines in development.

LiberHetica and RegTrain-VaccTrain joint meeting: ethics and regulatory synergies between African and European collaborative projects to improve clinical trials oversight in Liberia

The African and European representatives from the EDCTP-funded project LiberHetica and the RegTrain-VaccTrain project lead by Paul Ehrlich Institute (under the Global Health Protection Programme established by the German Federal Ministry of Health) met on 13 April 2021.

The LiberHetica project primarily focuses on strengthening the clinical trials oversight capacity at National Ethics institutions (NREB and UL-PIRE IRB), while RegTrain-VacTrain similarly does so at the National Medicines Authority (LMHRA).

The meeting was a first but very fruitful opportunity of exchanging between different but complementary working groups engaged in improving public health in Liberia.

Potential synergies were successfully identified during the meeting, which will be developed in order to further increase the impact of the projects, especially in regards to the protection of the participants in biomedical research and to promote the safety and efficacy of developing and circulating medicines.

First joint online conference for EDCTP-funded projects aimed at strengthening biomedical Ethics and Regulatory capacities for clinical trials in sub-Saharan African countries.

The LiberHetica and BERC-Luso projects, both financed by EDCTP, organized on the 26th of March a joint online conference titled: Biomedical Ethics and Regulatory Capacity Building: International Dialogues.

The BERC-Luso and LiberHetica are two projects funded by the European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) aimed at strengthening ethics and regulatory capacities for clinical trials by partnerships between African and European countries, and involving 6 Sub-Saharan African countries (Liberia, Angola, Guinea Bissau, Sao Tome and Principe, Mozambique and Cape-Verde) and 2 European countries (U.K. and Portugal).

The state of the art of Ethical and Regulatory capacities especially in field of clinical trials were presented and discussed, with invaluable input from the following national institutional representatives:

  • Dr.ª Ester Oliveira (Cabo Verde)
  • Doutor Victor Gomes (Guiné-Bissau)
  • Dr.ª Telma Chicuamba (Moçambique)
  • Dr. Jeryson Ramos (São Tomé e Príncipe)
  • Dr. Jemee Tegli (Liberia)

The conference was very enriching and not only contributed to the exchange of experiences among different countries, but it was also the opportunity to the share achievements and challenges that both projects have faced, and to indentify synergies to increase the impact and long term sustainability of these projects.

Biomedical Ethics and Regulatory Capacity Building: International Dialogues

The LiberHetica and BERC-Luso consortia will meet on the 26th March 2021 to discuss about Biomedical Ethics and Regulatory Capacity Building in Sub-Saharan African countries.

The BERC-Luso and LiberHetica are two projects funded by the European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) aimed at strenghting ethics and regulatory capacities for clinical trials by partnerships between African and European countries, and involving 6 Sub-Saharan African countries (Liberia, Angola, Guinea Bissau, Sao Tome and Principe, Mozambique and Cape-Verde) and 2 European countries (U.K. and Portugal).

LiberHetica and TRREE meet

Although one in Africa and the other in Europe, their common passion for ethics of health research involving humans has led them to get to know each other: they are Jemee Tegli (Coordinator in Liberia of the UL-PIRE-IRB and Coordinator also of the EDCTP-funded project LiberEthica) and Prof. Dominique Sprumont (Founder of Institute of Health Law, University of Neuchatel, Switzerland and Coordinator of TRREE).

Their discussions will certainly succeed in strengthening the collaborations between Africa and Europe so that research meets highest standards of ethics and promotes the welfare of participants.

TRREE stands for Training and Resources in Research Ethics Evaluation, and is headed by a consortium of interested persons from Northern and Southern countries. It aims to provide basic training, while building capacities, on the ethics of health research involving humans.