Participatory governance over research in an academic research network: the case of Diabetes Action Canada

Donald J Willison, Joslyn Trowbridge, Michelle Greiver, Karim Keshavjee, Doug Mumford, Frank Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Digital data generated in the course of clinical care are increasingly being leveraged for a wide range of secondary purposes. Researchers need to develop governance policies that can assure the public that their information is being used responsibly. Our aim was to develop a generalisable model for governance of research emanating from health data repositories that will invoke the trust of the patients and the healthcare professionals whose data are being accessed for health research. We developed our governance principles and processes through literature review and iterative consultation with key actors in the research network including: a data governance working group, the lead investigators and patient advisors. We then recruited persons to participate in the governing and advisory bodies. Our governance process is informed by eight principles: (1) transparency; (2) accountability; (3) follow rule of law; (4) integrity; (5) participation and inclusiveness; (6) impartiality and independence; (7) effectiveness, efficiency and responsiveness and (8) reflexivity and continuous quality improvement. We describe the rationale for these principles, as well as their connections to the subsequent policies and procedures we developed. We then describe the function of the Research Governing Committee, the majority of whom are either persons living with diabetes or physicians whose data are being used, and the patient and data provider advisory groups with whom they consult and communicate. In conclusion, we have developed a values-based information governance framework and process for Diabetes Action Canada that adds value over-and-above existing scientific and ethics review processes by adding a strong patient perspective and contextual integrity. This model is adaptable to other secure data repositories.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere026828
Number of pages9
JournalBMJ Open
Volume9
Issue number4
Early online date20 Apr 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019

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