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Eurecnet - National Information: Finland

National Information: Finland

    Short description of RECs system:

    National Committee on Medical Research Ethics (TUKIJA) is an independent expert and agency on medical research ethics in Finland. TUKIJA’s primary roles are to advise and coordinate regional ethics committees in matters of ethical principle related to medical research, and to issue opinions on the ethics of clinical drug trials unless this task is delegated to a regional ethics committee. TUKIJA’s duty is also to evaluate the ethical acceptability of the establishment of the new biobanks in Finland. TUKIJA provides training on medical research issues, and acts as a “second-opinion” organ to applications which have previously received negative opinion from regional ethics committee.

    There are 9 regional research ethics committees established by the University hospital districts. Under Section 16 of the Medical Research Act, each hospital district operating a university hospital in Finland shall have at least one ethics committee. They are responsible for prior evaluation of all kinds of medical research projects.

    There are other mostly independent and voluntary based research ethics committees for other fields (humanities, studies on national registers etc.) in universities and research centers. These research ethics committees have their own national network, which is coordinated by the National Advisory Board on Research Ethics (TENK).

    Further information on TUKIJA: http://www.tukija.fi/en/
    Medical Research Act: http://www.finlex.fi/fi/laki/kaannokset/1999/en19990488.pdf
    Further information on TENK: http://www.tenk.fi/en/

    Networking between RECs:

    TUKIJA organizes seminars and other meetings with regional ethics committees regularly. Also the regional ethics committees organize national seminars and local meetings. There are at least four occasions yearly where ethics committees can share information with each other. In addition to that TUKIJA organizes seminars with other national and regional committees on research and ethics.

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