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REB Announcements

Updated Guidance from the REB March 24, 2020

Dear Members of the Campus Research Community:

As the context for the COVID-19 situation is changing rapidly, the REB has updated its guidelines for all research involving human participants. The important criterion that needs to be borne in mind is social-distancing:

1. Research which is conducted on-line, does not require the research to be on campus, and does not require any travel by the research team or the research participants may continue;

2. All research which requires travel to campus or another site (even if only one person is travelling) must be suspended unless it meets the following criteria:
a) It is considered “essential” or “critical” as determined through consultation involving researchers and Departmental Heads or Institute Directors, and where appropriate, Deans; and
b) If research requires travel, it can only be conducted with the approval of the Faculty Dean in writing;

3. All research requiring in-person interaction must be suspended. The REB advises revising in-person data collection methods to on-line through phone or on-line platforms, if possible, taking into consideration that these methods do not increase risks to participants;

4. The REB is reviewing research related to COVID-19 as rapidly as possible; please keep in touch with the REB Chair through;

5. For any research ethics related questions, please contact the Research Ethics Board Chair, Dr. Suzanne McMurphy through or by home phone: 519-736-8722 or cell: 226-346-1425.

For animal care related inquiries, please contact John Hudson, Chair of the Animal Care Committee at

Thank you for your continued patience during this unprecedented time.

Dr. K.W. Michael Siu, Vice-President, Research and Innovation
Dr. Suzanne McMurphy, Chair, Research Ethics Board


University of Windsor REB Guidance during COVID-19 Outbreak

The University of Windsor REB will continue to be available to researchers and study participants by email through the REB mailbox——and by voicemail at the Office of Research Ethics 519-253-3000, ext. 3948. Both the REB email and REB voicemail will be monitored daily, even if Office of Research Ethics is closed. The REB will continue to respond to requests to revise for active projects and review of unanticipated and adverse events submitted by e-mail.

The REB encourages researchers to suspend or delay research projects that include in-person recruitment or data collection until the WHO Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) is over ( In some research settings in-person participation can be replaced with telephone or online communication. Considerations include the nature of the protocol, the type of participants engaged in the research, and any additional risk that may arise by switching from in-person to virtual communication. Revised participant consents or consent addendums may be required (e.g., to update privacy considerations with use of different communication channels). Requests to Revise can be submitted to the REB through

The REB also advises researchers to limit personal contacts, laboratory visits or trips to clinics and hospitals for research purposes.

The REB also reminds researchers with protocols that involve physical assessments and use of equipment that, even after the current concern is over, disinfection according to manufacturer’s standards is of paramount importance and single use accessories is advised. In the absence of manufacturers standards, thorough cleaning between participants is required and has always been a condition of REB clearance.

Where research staff are feeling unwell, care should be taken to stay home to prevent transmission of any illness. For further information from the University of Windsor please see: 

For up-to-date information on COVID-19 from Health Canada, please see:

If an immediate response is required, please contact the REB Chair at extension 3709 or her cell phone: 226-346-1425.





File Attachments: 

Contact the UWindsor Research Ethics Office

If you have any questions or require further information, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Office of Research Ethics 
University of Windsor
401 Sunset Avenue, 2146 Chrysler Hall North
Windsor, ON  N9B 3P4
(519) 253-3000 Ext 3948