WEBINAR | Ethics review mutual recognition: Opportunities and lessons learnt during the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has intensified the need for timely, rigorous, and accessible scientific evidence to guide the development of diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines 

Such research often takes place in collaboration between partners across the world and is then subjected to multiple layers of ethics review. Staggered ethics review risks delaying research, increasing administrative burdens, and applying inconsistent protections to study populations, whilst not increasing protections for research participants.  

Ethics review mutual recognition refers to a system where the decisions of one Research Ethics Committee are accepted by another on the basis of shared procedural standards. Originally proposed to facilitate international research in the field of genomic sciences, ethics review mutual recognition has yet to be considered for application during public health emergencies or in low- and middle-income countries.  

This one-hour webinar will share the findings of a project* undertaken in collaboration with the Ethics Working Group of the COVID-19 Clinical Research Coalition to review the challenges and opportunities of ethics review mutual recognition for COVID-19 multi-site research protocols.  

Experts in research ethics will respond to the project’s findings and discuss the barriers and opportunities for implementing ethics review mutual recognition during public health emergencies in low- and middle-income countries.  

* With thanks to the World Health Organization for funding 


Organized by the COVID-19 Clinical Research Coalition and PHEPREN (Public Health Emergency and Response Ethics Network). 

Moderated by Prof. Jantina de VriesDepartment of Medicine, University of Cape Town, South Afric  & co-chair of the coalition’s Ethics Working Group.

Watch the recording



  • IntroductionProf. Jantina de Vries, University of Cape Town, South Africa & co-chair of the coalition’s Ethics Working Group
  • Ethics review mutual recognition: opportunities and lessons learnt during the COVID-19 pandemic – Dr Vasiliki Rahimzadeh, Stanford University, USA
  • Response by Prof. Kevin Marsh, Oxford University & African Academy of Sciences, UK
  • Response by Dr Dicky Akanmori, WHO Africa Regional Office, Rep. of Congo
  • Panel discussion and Q&A with Prof. Marsh, Dr Akanmori, and Ms Katherine Littler, WHO, Switzerland

To register for this event please visit the following URL: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/5016026886590/WN_C5arMC05SoWAWATGnzaQLw →



18 February 2021 - 16:00 CEST

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