General

Face-to-Face Human Research Review Status

Last updated Monday March 22, 2021 at 9:15 AM EDT

This page will be kept to-up-date with information regarding the review status for all risk levels, in order to provide the research community with information on what the Face-to-Face COVID-19 Review Committee (F2FCRC) and Research Ethics Boards (REBs) are able to review at any given time.

F2F Research Review Status

As of March 22, 2021, the F2FCRC is accepting Level 1 face-to-face research for review.

Currently accepting the following submissions:

  • COVID-19 research or F2F research where the participant is receiving a service that would be delivered/received regardless of the research (e.g. clinical care) may be submitted for REB review at any time. Please contact ethics.review@utoronto.ca if you have questions regarding whether your study qualifies.
  • Researchers currently in other regions or countries where public health directives may allow for F2F research to commence may submit their protocols for REB review at any time.
  • Level 1 research (see table below):
     
COVID-19 Research Risk Research Method Direct contact / close contact? Conducted in an EHS-approved safe research space? Approximate Start (Provincial Framework)
Level 1 Interaction / observation None or minimal contact, physical distancing can be easily achieved (e.g., interviews, computer-based experiments, non-invasive methods) Not required Red

The following submissions will be accepted at a later date:

COVID-19 Research Risk Research Method Direct contact / close contact? Conducted in an EHS-approved safe research space? Approximate Start (Provincial Framework)
Level 2a Intervention Some physical contact (e.g., biospecimen collection, body measurements), physical distancing sometimes challenging to maintain Yes Orange
Level 2b Intervention Some physical contact (e.g., biospecimen collection, body measurements), physical distancing sometimes challenging to maintain No Green
Level 3a Physical treatment / manipulation Sustained physical contact, participant breathing heavily, physical distancing not possible Yes Yellow
Level 3b Physical treatment / manipulation Sustained physical contact, participant breathing heavily, physical distancing not possible No Normal activities

F2F Research – Submission Procedure

  1. Researchers proposing F2F research that can be reviewed according to the information and guidelines above will complete the Face-to-Face and Off-Campus COVID-19 (F2FOC) Review form, and upload the provided PDF copy of the completed form to the Documents Summary (Section #13) of their My Research Human Protocols (MRHP) new submission or amendment.
  2. The F2FCRC will review the form and provide recommendations to the vice-deans/associate deans/vice-principals (research) and researchers on the project’s risks and health and safety requirements. If further information is required, a member the F2FCRC will reach out to the Principal Investigator directly.
  3. The REB will conduct an ethics review of the protocol, as per normal requirements. Once the protocol is approved, the Principal Investigator will receive notification of REB approval. This is not sufficient to commence F2F research.
  4. Once both the F2FCRC and the REB approve the study, an F2FCRC approval letter will be issued to the Principal Investigator to allow them to start or resume their study.

As study submissions must be reviewed by both the REB and the F2FCRC before they can proceed, review times may be longer than normal.  

Details on this new institutional process can be found on the Review of Face-to-Face and Off-Campus Research page.

Please direct your questions about this process to f2f.research@utoronto.ca.   

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