Governance and ethics

The Child and Adolescent Health Service (CAHS) Research Ethics and Governance Unit (external link) oversees the review and approval of all human research conducted within Perth Children’s Hospital, Child and Adolescent Community Health Service (external link) and the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (external link).

The centralised office for the CAHS Research Ethics and Governance Unit is based at PCH. 

Human research projects cannot commence at PCH and other CAHS sites until they have both: 

  1. ethical approval (which includes approval of the scientific integrity of the research) 
  2. site governance approval (Research Governance). 

WA Health 

Our ethics and governance review follows the WA Health Research Governance and Single Ethical Review Standard Operating Procedures (external link)

We maintain these procedures through the following internal mechanisms: 

  • CAHS Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) which meets at PCH (accountable to the Director Clinical Services) 
  • CAHS Ethics Office (based at PCH)
  • CAHS Research Governance Office (based at PCH). 

Ethics 

All human research conducted at PCH must undergo ethical and scientific review, approval and monitoring by the CAHS Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC). The HREC is registered with the National Health and Medical Research Council's (NHMRC's) Australian Health Ethics Committee. 

Under WA Health Single Ethical Review guidelines, the Lead WA Health HREC (which has expertise in the relevant category of research) must be selected according to the following criteria in descending order. That is, the HREC:  

  • is associated with the site at which the Coordinating Principal Investigator (CPI) will conduct the research; and 
  • if this is not applicable, the selection of the Lead HREC is at the discretion of the CPI.    

CAHS HREC is currently the only WA Health HREC with paediatric expertise.   

Information on the process of completing and submitting an application to the CAHS HREC is available on the Child and Adolescent Health Service site (external link).  

Governance 

The CAHS Research Governance Office (RGO) provides an independent and systematic evaluation of research applications for all projects to be conducted on site at PCH. 

The governance review involves a Site Specific Assessment by a Research Governance Officer. This evaluation ensures the safety and minimises the risk for the participant, the researcher and the institution. HREC approval must be obtained and forms part of the governance review. 

Information on the process of completing and submitting an application to the CAHS RGO is available on the Child and Adolescent Health Service site (external link).