ZERCaP has commissioned a needs assesment which is looking at, among other things, current and ideal regulatory oversight and capacity of regulators. Guided by terms of reference developed to review the legal and policy framework for ethics regulation in the country, there is ongoing self-reflection by MRCZ Board, secretariat, sub-committee members and other stakeholders on some of the key challenges that local researchers face as they develop their research protocols and endeavor to get them approved timeously. Preliminary results show that there is scope to improve. The urgency associated with the COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare most of these issues. The pandemic has provided an opportunity to address issues more rapidly, and to engage in debate that was long due.
MRCZ Online System
A system was created to review studies electronically. The system URL is on the MRCZ main website. Creating a proposal is the first step in the process of proposal approval. Proposal Submission System includes a step-by-step proposal creation form, to assist researchers in creating a proposal for submission. An optional field for file attachments is available, allowing users to attach relevant documents for proposal submission.
NUST IRB Training
As part of the ZERCaP intended activities, IRB training is one of the major activities. National University of Science and Technology REC was trained in Bulawayo.
MRCZ Reviewers Training
The MRCZ IRB Committee had a one-day training on the reviewing modalities. The training enabled the reviewers to renew their GCP certificates.