- Berman Institute Bioethics Bulletin - http://bioethicsbulletin.org -

Public Members Needed

The Research Involving Human Subjects Committee (RIHSC) FDA’s IRB, is looking for up to three individuals from the community to serve as public members on the committee.


FDA is committed to safeguarding the rights and welfare of all human beings who participate as subjects in research. The RIHSC reviews all research involving human subjects conducted, supported, or funded, in whole or in part, by FDA, to ensure that the research complies with applicable laws and ethical research standards.


What kind of members serve on an IRB?


Ideally, IRBs are made up of members from diverse backgrounds.  Diversity assures a complete and thorough review of the research activities from a variety of perspectives.


We are seeking community members with different kinds of backgrounds than our current members. Some examples would be educators, members of the clergy, laborers, and previous government employees who have not worked in public health agencies.


RIHSC membership currently has scientists, health care professionals, social scientists, and regulatory counsel.


What are the qualifications RIHSC is seeking in a Public Member?


Although not required, it may be beneficial to have experience in:



Community members who volunteer to be a public member for RIHSC may not be affiliated with FDA or be an immediate family member of a person affiliated with FDA. 


What are the responsibilities of a public member of RIHSC?


The public members on a rotating basis will be asked to:



The public members will be modestly compensated for performing committee duties.


If you know of interested individuals who are not affiliated with the FDA or a part of the immediate family of a person affiliated with FDA, please encourage him/her to send a resume or CV to the RIHSC Program Management Staff via email at RIHSC@fda.hhs.gov [1].

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