Thailand FDA periodically releases list of of institutional review boards (IRBs) / ethics committees (ECs) that it recognizes for acceptance of clinical trials. Under Thailand regulatory system, approved ethics committees serve as the main point of approvals for initiating clinical trials in the country. This has been explained in our previous articles (see Part I and Part II), wherein we discussed regulatory scenario in Thailand, including regulatory approvals for clinical trial in Thailand, ethics committee approval for clinical trial in Thailand, documents required for regulatory submission and ethics committee submission in Thailand.

We’d also presented a list of ethics committees that are recognized for application to Thailand FDA. Updates to this list was further reported in another article (see previous update on Thailand’s approved IRBs).

Current article presents and discusses list of IRBs as reported on the Thailand FDA website. This link provides details in Thai language, but below sections gives this list in English for others to understand. [Note: Below given list is an approx translation. You’re advised to use accredited translators before using below information.]

List of Ethics Committees recognized by Thailand FDA

S# (Number as as per list on Thai FDA website) Name of IRB, or name of institute / Hospital / University, where IRB is established Recognition start from Recognition end on
1 (1/2016) Bangkok Hospital, Bangkok 07 Oct 2016 06 Oct 2018
2 (2/2016) Phramongkutklao College of Medicine, Bangkok 05 Oct 2016 04 Oct 2018
3 (3/2016) IHRP, Bangkok 07 Oct 2016 06 Oct 2018
4 (4/2016) Bumrungrad Hospital, Bangkok 07 Oct 2016 06 Oct 2018
5 (5/2016) Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen 11 Nov 2016 10 Nov 2018
6 (6/2016) Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok 24 Nov 2016 23 Nov 2018
7 (7/2016)) Mahidol University’s Center of Ethical Reinforcement for Human Research, Bangkok 29 Nov 2016 28 Nov 2018
8 (8/2016) Ramathibodhi Hospital, Bangkok 07 Dec 2016 06 Dec 2018
9 (9/2016) MOPH IRB, Bangkok 06 Dec 2016 05 Dec 2018
10 (10/2016) CREC, Bangkok 07 Dec 2016 06 Dec 2018
11 (1/2017) Faculty of Medicine Vajira Hospital, Navamindradhiraj University, Bangkok 25 Jan 2017 24 Jan 2019
12 (2/2017) Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 20 Jan 2017 19 Jan 2019
13 (3/2017) Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai 25 Jan 2017 24 Jan 2019
14 (4/2017) Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Bangkok 20 Jan 2017 19 Jan 2019
15 (5/2017) Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai 25 Jan 2017 24 Jan 2019
16 (6/2017) Faculty of Medicine, Thammasat University, Pathum Thani 17 Mar 2017 16 Mar 2019
17 (7/2017) Research Institute of Health and Environment Sciences, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai 1 Jun 2017 31 May 2019
18 (8/2017) Department of Thai Medicine and Alternative Medicine 5 Jul 2017 4 Jul 2019
19 (9/2017) Bamrasnaradura Infectious Disease Institute, Nonthaburi 24 Aug 2017 23 Aug 2019
20 (10/2017) Naresuan University, Pitsanulok 29 Aug 2017 28 Aug 2019

Important updates in the new list

Current list has some important points to note.

  1. First 10 ethics committees in the list are actually from the list approved earlier (reported here).
  2. Most of the ethics committees in the remaining list are currently out of their approval period. (Though, it’s possible that FDA may be coming out with newly approved list with extended approval periods.)
  3. No more ethics committees (ECs) from private hospitals have been recognized by Thailand FDA. Earlier recognized private hospitals’ ECs were Bangkok Hospital and Bumrungrad Hospital.
  4. Ethics committees, which are still under their valid approval period are
    1. Research Institute of Health and Environment Sciences, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai
    2. EC of Department of Thai Medicine and Alternative Medicine
    3. Bamrasnaradura Infectious Disease Institute, Nonthaburi
    4. Naresuan University, Pitsanulok
  5. Govt. IESc / IRBs, including MOPH ethics committee and, new one on the bloc – CREC are still continuing. Read more about CREC in our previous post.
  6. IHRP has been included this time as well. This EC is continuing to accept BE study applications.
  7. Naresuan University, which is continually being since last two times, continues to be approved till 28 Aug 2019.

Impact of new list of recognized ECs

  • Expired approval validity periods

Since, most of the ECs (including all traditional ones) are out of their validity period, further update on the list from Thai FDA will be keenly awaited. This list will help in providing validity to scores of clinical trials approved by such ethics committees.

  • CREC

As discussed in our previous article, this new central ethics committee is one of the best things happened to Thailand clinical trial scene in last few years. It’s recognized by FDA, affiliated to several sites in Thailand and still not heavily loaded with clinical trial applications. This means, shorter queues for submission, quicker approval times and, best of all, flexibility to work at several excellent sites in Thailand.

  • Saving time…and cost!

If a site is not affiliated with an EC that has been recognized by Thailand FDA, then mostly investigator needs to apply to two ECs for approval. Local EC and central EC (recognized by FDA). In such cases, there may be a delay in project approval due to submission queue at the central EC office. It means that an additional time period of 3-9 months may have to be factored in planning.

However, if a trial has been planned at a site that is affiliated with an FDA-recognized EC, then trial team can save a lot of time in securing necessary EC approval, as well as cost required for such planning, execution and management.

Trial managers, do factor these sites in your project planning. 🙂

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