Research Participant Advocacy
Clinical trials are a way to answer a health-care question, find a better way to control a disease, or discover a cure. This page is designed to provide you with information to help you decide if enrolling in a research study is right for you, to let you know about your rights as a research volunteer, and to give you contact information in case you have any questions or concerns.
What is an Institutional Review Board (IRB)
An IRB oversees research conducted on human subjects to ensure the rights, welfare and safety of the individuals who enroll in the study are protected. At Vanderbilt, there are four IRB Committees that review health, behavioral and social science research. Before any research procedures can begin, the IRB must review and approve the study protocol, the informed consent document(s), as well as any other study materials.
If you have any questions or concerns related to a research study, or would like someone to be with you during the informed consent process, please contact our Research Subject Advocate. They can be reached by phone at (615) 322-2918, toll free at (866) 224-8273, or through our anonymous comment form.