PEI Research Ethics Board

The PEI Research Ethics Board (REB) safeguards the rights, safety and well-being of participants in all human subject research involving Health PEI and the Department of Health and Wellness and their patients, staff, resources or data. Research is reviewed to ensure that it is ethically acceptable and scientifically valid and that it follows the ethical guidelines of the Tri-Council Policy Statement "Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans" (TCPS), as well as other ethical guidelines, applicable legislation and regulatory requirements.

What types of studies need to be reviewed by the REB?

Your study must be reviewed and approved by the REB if your research involves:

  • human participants;
  • biological materials, including materials from deceased individuals;
  • patients, staff, resources or data within Health PEI’s jurisdiction;
  • engaging in data collection within Health PEI’s jurisdiction that has already received ethical approval from another Research Ethics Board; and/or 
  • the secondary use of data that was originally collected from human participants for another purpose.

Quality improvement studies, performance reviews or testing within normal educational requirements are not normally required to be reviewed by the REB, unless they contain an element of research. However, if you wish to publish your study, it should be submitted to the REB for review and approval.

Review and approval by the REB must be obtained prior to the start of any research.

Please note that approval by the REB does not indicate any commitment of personnel, material resources or space of Health PEI or the Department of Health and Wellness for any proposal.

How do I know if my study is considered ‘research’ or is ‘quality improvement’?

The following table can help guide you in understanding if your study is Research or Quality Improvement:

Research Quality Improvement
The goal of the project is to test an hypothesis The goal of the project is to improve service delivery
You are using scientific methods (e.g. controls, blinding, randomization) and the outcome of the project is uncertain The project has a reasonable expectation of success
The planned procedures deviate from normal clinical care There is no change in normal clinical care
Your expect to draw generalizable conclusions The findings will be used to improve the PEI Health system patient service delivery only
You expect to publish your findings in a scientific journal Publication is not intended

The opinion of the REB should be sought whenever there is any doubt about the appropriateness of a local ethical review for any project.

What are the submission requirements?

Submissions must be complete, with all appropriate documentation as identified on the Investigator’s Submission Checklist [PDF | 304 KB]. The REB Coordinator reserves the right to defer from review by the REB any submission that is lacking information critical to the deliberations of the Board.

For full details on submission guidelines and the review process, including whether a study requires full board or expedited review, view the Research Ethics Board General Guidelines [PDF | 28 KB]. Proposals typically considered for expedited review include:

  • Studies involving ‘minimal risk’ to participants;
  • Extensions of previously approved proposals; and
  • New studies which involve only minor modifications to a previously approved proposal.

If you are unsure if your study requires full board review, or to obtain a preliminary review of your submission, please contact the Research Ethics office at 902-569-0576.

If you are a student and completing a study, the Confirmation of Supervisor’s Review [PDF | 67 KB] must be completed by your supervisor and accompany your submission for review by the REB.

Note:  Incomplete submissions will not be reviewed.

Once a study has been approved, a researcher must comply with the REB's continuing reporting requirements [PDF | 37 KB]. At a minimum, every researcher must complete an annual report and request for re-approval [PDF | 88 KB]. When a study is completed, a closure form must be submitted to the REB [PDF | 98 KB].

When can I send my proposal for review?

The REB meets once a month, if necessary. The deadline for full board submissions is approximately three weeks prior to the meeting date.
2021 Meeting and Submission Deadline Schedule
Full Board Submission Deadline Meeting Date, Time and Location
January 7, 2021 at 12 noon January 21, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
February 4, 2021 at 12 noon February 18, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
March 4, 2021 at 12 noon March 18, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
April 1, 2021 at 12 noon April 15, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
May 6, 2021 at 12 noon May 20, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
June 4, 2021 at 12 noon June 17, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
July 2, 2021 at 12 noon July 15, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
August - No Meeting  
September 2, 2021 at 12 noon September 16, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
October 7, 2021 at 12 noon October 21, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
November 4, 2021 at 12 noon November 18, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined
December 2, 2021 at 12 noon December 16, 2021
11 a.m. 1 p.m.
Location to be determined

Note: Studies that are eligible for expedited review can be submitted at any time.

How do I prepare a research submission for ethics approval?

The REB has available a number of guidelines and templates that are intended to assist investigators in preparing their proposals. It is recommended that investigators follow the REB’s guidelines. The templates should be revised to fit the proposal.

To help prepare a Protocol, view the Research Protocol Guidelines [PDF | 62 KB].

It is ethically and legally necessary to explain the research study and obtain consent from any person prior to participating in a research study. To help prepare a consent form, view the Guidelines for Preparation of a Consent Form [PDF | 134 KB] and the Consent Form Template [PDF | 125 KB].

How do I contact the PEI Research Ethics Board?

All submissions and inquires should be directed to:

PEI Research Ethics Board
Health PEI
16 Garfield Street
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Telephone: (902) 569-0576
Fax: (902) 368-4969


Published date: 
April 1, 2021
Health PEI logo

General Inquiries

Health PEI
16 Garfield Street
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Phone: 902-368-6130
Fax: 902-368-6136

Your Health Privacy

Media Inquiries
Phone: 902-368-6135

Health PEI Board of Directors

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency department.

If you are unsure what to do about a health issue or if you need health information, call 8-1-1.

811 logo