Strengthening National Ethics Committees in West and Central Francophone Africa
Grant agreement: CSA2019ERC-2676
The SNECFA Project
Cameroon Bioethics Initiative (CAMBIN), Cameroon (DrMbih Jerome Tosam)
– University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland
– Ministère de la Santé Publique, Comité National d’Ethique de la Recherche en Santé (CNERS), Niger
– Ministère de la Santé Publique, Comité National d’Ethique de la Recherche pour la Santé Humaine (CNERSH),Cameroon
– Ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur, de la Recheche et de l’Innovation, Comité National de Bioéthique du Tchad (CNBT), Chad
– Ministère de la Santé et des Affaires Sociales, Comité National d’Ethique pour la Santé et les Sciences de la Vie (CNESS), Mali
Start date : 1 February 2021
Duration : 36 months
General Objective (Overall Aim):
To strengthen the capacity of four NECs in French speaking countries from West and Central Africa, namely Cameroon, Chad, Mali and Niger, with a special focus on drafting SOPs for the review of research protocols during routine and emergency situations.
- To strengthen the capacity of four NECs in Francophone Africa through providing i) customised training programmes tailored to each country and ii) support for registration or renewal of their Federal Wide Assurance (FWA) numbers;
- To support four NECs in writing and revising SOPs for the review of research protocols during routineand emergency situations;
- To develop and revise TRREE national supplements for the four countries;
- To disseminate the SOPs and TRREE national supplements through proactive communicationprogrammes;
- To facilitate knowledge sharing and exchange between NECs in the region, with particular inclusion ofthe NECs inGuinea and/or Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) that have a unique experience to sharerelated to protocol review during the 2014 and current Ebola outbreak respectively.
Role of the Cameroon Bioethics Initiative (CAMBIN)
This project will be nested within the Cameroon Bioethics Initiative (CAMBIN). CAMBIN is a non-profit, non-governmental, non-political, non-discriminatory, multidisciplinaryorganisation with headquarters in Yaounde, Cameroon. CAMBIN has an Ethics Review and Consultancy Committee (ERCC), which not only reviews research protocols, but offers consultancy services for biomedical research and ethical review of research.
Approach and methods
The global approach will foster capacity building and strengthening through three types of activities: 1) training, 2) development of resources, and 3) advocacy and communications.
- We will facilitate and provide incentives to NEC members to participate in online ethics training modules; their participation will be monitored and support provided where necessary;
- Following country-specific assessments of training needs for each NEC, we will organize customised workshops in each of the four countries;
- We will identify national experts to revise (Cameroon and Mali) or develop (Chad and Niger)
TRREE national supplements.
- Development of resources:
- We will facilitate the development and revision of SOPs for the four NECs. These will incorporate SOPs for reviewing clinical trials during routine situations;
- We will provide support for the development of SOPs for expedited review of study protocols under emergency outbreak situations;
- We will support NECs to register for or renew their FWA numbers.
- Advocacy and communications:
- We will organise workshops in each participating country to disseminate SOPs and TRREE national supplements among stakeholders, including NEC and NRA members, and researchers within each country;
- We will facilitate experience sharing between NECs and NRAs of the four target countries, including the NECs of Guinea and/or DRC, which have a unique experience to share related to protocol review during the 2014 and current Ebola outbreak respectively.