Participant Information

Protecting Research Participants

The University of Hawai‘i Institutional Review Board (UH IRB) and its administrative office, the Human Studies Program, is responsible for ensuring the protection of the rights, welfare, and safety of individuals who participate in research conducted by UH faculty, staff, and students.

The IRB carefully reviews and monitors research to ensure that it is carried out legally and ethically. Research studies cannot start until the IRB has approved the research.

Every Participant has the following rights:
  • To be treated with respect, including respecting your decision whether or not to enroll, continue, or stop being in a study.
  • To choose to stop being in a study at any time.
  • To be given adequate time to read the consent form and have the research study explained to you
  • To be given time to ask questions at any time throughout the study, and to be told whom you can contact if you have any more questions.
  • To be given a copy of the consent form after you have signed it.
Questions that you should consider asking before you agree to participate in a research study:
  • Why is the research being done?
  • What will be done to me as part of the research?
  • If there are any benefits to my participation, and if so, how will I benefit from the research?
  • If the research could potentially hurt me, and if so, how?
  • What will the researcher do with my information?
  • Will the research cost me anything?
  • Who pays if I’m unexpectedly injured in the study?
  • How long will the study last?
  • What happens if I decide to leave the study early?

If you are a participant, you may contact the Human Studies Program if you need more information about your rights.

As a potential research participant, UH research involving human volunteers requires the following language in the Informed Consent document:

“You may contact the UH Human Studies Program at 808-956-5007or to discuss problems, concerns, and questions; obtain information; or offer input with an informed individual who is unaffiliated with the specific research protocol.”

Other Resources

The Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) provides a brochure for people who are interested or already involved in participating in research. “Brochures for the Public” outlines information for research participants about their rights as a volunteer. Click to go to this site.

National Institute of Health (NIH) Clinical Center – Kids in Research (for information about the importance of involving children in research)

Leave Us A Message

If you have additional questions or concerns about your (or your child’s) rights as a research participant, you may submit your message to Human Studies Program here.