Participation in Research Studies
Clinical research relies heavily on volunteers dedicated to the advancement of scientific knowledge. Research studies can be intimidating and confusing at first. It is important to understand that all research studies are overseen by an Institutional Review Board (IRB) which approves the procedures and rationales of all clinical protocols. The IRB also ensures that participants are exposed to minimum risks and that their participation in a study has benefits to society, the community, a group of individuals or to the participant. Finally, the IRB ensures that all personnel involved in a research study are qualified to perform their assigned tasks. All studies conducted at the ACNC must be approved by the UAMS IRB.
Study participants will never be forced to be in a research study or lose any rights by enrolling in one. The study will always be explained to the parents and, where appropriate, to the child. Participants are always encouraged to ask questions before deciding to participate. Once you are enrolled in a research study, we encourage you to continue to ask questions and be involved. If at any time during the course of a research study you wish to withdraw your participation, you can do so without any consequences to you, to your family or to your health care. For some research studies, it is important for scientists to have a series of results from the same participant. Thus, it is important for you to consider whether you will be able to commit the time and efforts to the full length of a research study before you enroll.
Arkansas Children’s Nutrition Center has a long history of partnership with volunteers from all over the state of Arkansas. All of our volunteers are highly dedicated and committed to our research studies. Amazingly, even volunteers living oversees came back to Arkansas Children’s Nutrition Center for their yearly check up! We are very thankful to all of our volunteers for their dedication and their generosity towards spending some of their life milestones with us.
The National Institutes of Health has developed a wonderful website about clinical research studies with multiple videos of Medical Doctors, Volunteers and Scientists describing their role in clinical research. Take a minute to watch their videos; you will understand a lot more than you could ever read on our website!
Arkansas Children’s Hospital Research Institute also has good information regarding children participating in research.