The HSE Primary Care Division supports primary care related research and is mindful of its obligations to ensure that research is both ethical and respectful of service users and providers. Research may inform and contribute to the improvement of primary care services.
All research proposals or requests to engage with primary care services, staff or providers for research or evaluation purposes must be approved by the National Primary Care Research Committee. An internal HSE procedure supports a structure and process for the consideration of such requests.
The procedure is relevant to:
- All HSE staff, who wish to carry out primary care related research which may involve using HSE facilities, engaging with HSE primary care staff, engagement with service users or seeking information pertaining to staff or service users.
- All students on placement with the HSE or students external to the HSE who wish to carry out primary care related research which may involve using HSE facilities, engaging with HSE primary care staff/providers, engagement with service users or seeking information pertaining to staff or service users.
- All researchers, both internal and external to the HSE who wish to carry out primary care related research as part of an academic study course which may involve using HSE facilities, engaging with HSE primary care staff, engagement with service users or seeking information pertaining to staff or service users.
- Primary care service evaluations/reviews for external or academic research purposes needs to be formally submitted to the PCRC.
- Approved research should be subject to periodic review. The frequency of such review should reflect the degree of involvement for service users/participants in the research project. The Primary Care Research Committee should have sight of the final draft report prior to publication and that their opinion will be considered in relation to the publication, in particular items that may have a bearing on the HSE’s reputation.
Out of Scope
The National Primary Care Research Committee is not recognised by the Department of Health under regulation 7 of the European Communities Regulations (Clinical Trials on Medicinal Products for Human Use (S.I. 190 of 2004)). This procedure therefore excludes clinical trials of medicinal products. Further information regarding applying for ethical review of clinical trials of medicinal products can be found on the Department of Health website http://www.dohc.ie/other_health_issues/clinical_trials/.
- The National Primary Care Research Committee is not a Clinical Ethics Committee and does not deal with or give an opinion on:
- Ethics issues in clinical practice
- Clinical trials involving human participants
- Testing of new treatment or interventions or medical devices.
- Requests for Ethical Approval - This committee does not provide ethical approval and can only accept applications where ethical approval has already been granted by an Academic Ethics Committee.
Find more about ethical approval here
List of contact details for healthcare research ethics committees
Do you need approval?
The following types of research DO NOT REQUIRE APPROVAL FROM THE National Primary Care Research Committee
· Research utilising existing publicly available documents or data
· Observational studies in public places in which the identity and location of the participant remains anonymous
· Quality assurance studies
· Clinical Audits
Researchers and Applicants
All research proposals or requests to engage with primary care services/staff/providers for research or evaluation purposes must be brought for approval to the National Primary Care Research Committee before engagement with primary care services/staff/providers commences.
Read more in our Final Instructions for Applicants .docx (size 26.1 KB)
Approval to publish
An applicant must submit this application form to the Primary Care Research Committee, with a final draft of any proposed publication, prior to submission to the publishers or prior to dissemination (internal or external). The completed application form should be submitted to the Head of Service for Primary Care for approval at a minimum of eight weeks in advance of the PCRC quarterly meeting. Once approved and signed by Line/Service Manager and Chief Officer, send the application form to your local CHO Head of Service Primary Care, which are listed at the back of the application form.
Primary Care Research Committee Meeting Dates
No further dates for meetings have been scheduled
Application Form Primary Care Research Committee .doc (size 152.6 KB)
Decision Framework PCRC.docx (size 67.1 KB)
Final Application to PCRC for Approval to Publish.docx (size 63.8 KB)
Final Instructions for Applicants .docx (size 26.1 KB)