NOVEL CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) UPDATES

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Important Update to Human Subjects Research and COVID-19

REVISED COVID STATEMENT August 24, 2020

Dear UCA Research Community,

Institutional Review Boards (IRB) are charged with protecting the rights and welfare of human subjects and supporting the university’s research mission. Given that mission, the rapidly evolving circumstances regarding COVID-19, and the University of Central Arkansas’ focus on the health and safety of faculty, staff, students, and the community, the Office of the Provost, the Sponsored Programs Office, and UCA’s IRB have come together to revise our standards related to research involving human participants that requires face-to-face interaction.

Effective immediately face-to-face research interactions with human research participants can resume, however, we recommend moving towards remote data collection (e.g., phone or other university-supported online tools such as Webex, Qualtrics, etc.), whenever possible.

Face-to-face research visits must adhere to current guidelines in order to reduce potential exposure to COVID-19 for study participants and research staff which include:

  1. Using a series of screening questions, remotely screen all study participants just prior to an in-person visit for possible exposure to the novel coronavirusCOVID-19 or symptoms of respiratory illness such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing just prior to an in-person visit. Potential questions to ask are posted below. Research participants with possible exposure or symptoms may not participate in face-to-face interactions until after the time recommended by current public health guidance.
  2. Before each face-to-face interaction, ensure daily that all research staff who interact with participants are symptom-free and have not knowingly been exposed to COVID-19.
  3. Stay aware of and abide by all applicable recommendations, policies, and actions of federal and state public health authorities, University of Central Arkansas, non-UCA facilities where research is conducted, etc.

Please follow all Arkansas Department of Health and  CDC guidelines, including maintaining a distance of at least 6-feet to avoid the person-to-person spread of COVID-19.

Required Screening Questions

  1. Have you been in contact with anyone with COVID-19 in the last 14 days?

 

  1. Have you tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 10 days?

 

  1. Have you developed the following in the past 7 days?

 

Fever of 100.4 or greater

Felt feverish

Developed a cough

Difficulty breathing

Sore throat

Runny nose

Diarrhea

Loss of taste or smell

 

 

Please do not hesitate to contact the IRB Administrator Kimberly Ashley-Pauley, researchcompliance@uca.edu) or the IRB Chair (Dr. Jacquie Rainey, jacquier@uca.edu) with any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your understanding.

Dr. Patricia Poulter, Provost

Dr. Jacquie Rainey, Professor and Associate Dean, IRB Chair

Kimberly Ashley-Pauley, Research Compliance Officer


Research is the pathway to innovation in scientific and academic activities. In keeping with the core values of the University of Central Arkansas to maintain an atmosphere of intellectual excellence and integrity, the Office of Research Compliance provides support to faculty, students, and staff in their research endeavors. We work with faculty oversight committees to promote ethical and responsible conduct of research in the realms of human and animal subjects protections, conflicts of interest, intellectual property, and export control.

All members of the University community share responsibility for maintaining a climate of trust between scholars, researchers, and students, and between the academic community and the public. The Office of Research Compliance supports the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) and the Institutional Review Board (IRB) to ensure that all institutional, state, and federal regulations are being followed, while at the same time developing a system wherein all UCA researchers have adequate tools, knowledge, and support to maintain the highest ethical and legal standards of research conduct.

 

Contact Us

Research Compliance Office
Torreyson West, Ste. 328
Conway, AR 72035
Phone: 501-852-7460
e-mail: researchcompliance@uca.edu