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Use of an Electronic Informed Consent in Clinical Investigations: Questions and Answers; Draft Guidance for Industry, Clinical Investigators, and Institutional Review Boards; Availability

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AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or the Agency) is announcing the availability of a draft guidance for industry, clinical investigators, and institutional review boards entitled “Use of Electronic Informed Consent in Clinical Investigations: Questions and Answers.” The guidance provides recommendations for clinical investigators, sponsors, and institutional review boards (IRBs) on the use of electronic media and processes to obtain informed consent for FDA-regulated clinical investigations of medical products, including human drug and biological products, medical devices, and combinations thereof.

DATES:

Although you can comment on any guidance at any time (see 21 CFR 10.115(g)(5)), to ensure that the Agency considers your comment on this draft guidance before it begins work on the final version of the guidance, submit either electronic or written comments on the draft guidance by May 8, 2015.

ADDRESSES:

Submit written requests for single copies of the draft guidance to the Division of Drug Information, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10001 New Hampshire Ave., Hillandale Building, 4th Floor, Silver Spring, MD 20993; or Office of Good Clinical Practice, Office of Special Medical Programs, Office of the Commissioner, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Start Printed Page 12497Ave., Bldg. 32, Rm. 5103, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002; or the Office of Communication, Outreach and Development, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 71, Rm. 3128, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002; or the Division of Small Manufacturers, International, and Consumer Assistance, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 66, Rm. 4613, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002. Send one self-addressed adhesive label to assist that office in processing your requests. See the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for electronic access to the draft guidance document.

Submit electronic comments on the draft guidance to http://www.regulations.gov. Submit written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Cheryl Grandinetti, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 51, Rm. 6316, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-2500; Patrick McNeilly, Office of the Commissioner, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 32, Rm. 5103, Silver Spring, MD 20993, 301-796-8340; Stephen Ripley, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 71, Rm. 7301, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 1-800-835-4709 or 301-827-6210; or Irfan Khan, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 66, Rm. 3459, Silver Spring, MD 20993, 1-800-638-2041 or 301-796-7100.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

FDA is announcing the availability of a draft guidance for industry, clinical investigators, and institutional review boards entitled “Use of Electronic Informed Consent in Clinical Investigations: Questions and Answers.” This guidance provides recommendations for clinical investigators, study sponsors, and IRBs on the use of electronic media and processes to obtain informed consent for FDA-regulated clinical investigations of medical products, including human drug and biological products, medical devices, and combinations thereof. In particular, the guidance provides recommendations on procedures that may be followed when using an electronic informed consent (eIC) to help (1) ensure protection of the rights, safety, and welfare of human subjects; (2) ensure the subject's comprehension of the information presented during the eIC process; (3) ensure that appropriate documentation of consent is obtained when electronic media and processes are used to obtain informed consent; and (4) ensure the quality and integrity of eIC data included in FDA application submissions or made available to FDA during inspections.

To enhance human subject protection and reduce regulatory burden, the Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Human Research Protections, and FDA have been actively working to harmonize the Agencies' regulatory requirements and guidance for human subject research. This guidance document was developed as a part of these efforts.

This draft guidance is being issued consistent with FDA's good guidance practices regulation (21 CFR 10.115). The draft guidance, when finalized, will represent the Agency's current thinking on the use of eIC in investigational studies. It does not create or confer any rights for or on any person and does not operate to bind FDA or the public. An alternative approach may be used if such approach satisfies the requirements of the applicable statutes and regulations.

II. The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This draft guidance refers to previously approved collections of information found in FDA regulations. These collections of information are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collections of information in 21 CFR part 11 related to electronic records; electronic signatures have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0303; 21 CFR parts 50 and 56 related to protection of human subjects; IRBs have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0755; 21 CFR 56.115 related to IRB recordkeeping requirements, which include the requirements for records related to informed consent, have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0130; the collections of information in 21 CFR part 312 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0014; and the collections of information in 21 CFR part 812 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0078.

III. Comments

Interested persons may submit either electronic comments regarding this document to http://www.regulations.gov or written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (see ADDRESSES). It is only necessary to send one set of comments. Identify comments with the docket number found in brackets in the heading of this document. Received comments may be seen in the Division of Dockets Management between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and will be posted to the docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

IV. Electronic Access

Persons with access to the Internet may obtain the document at http://www.fda.gov/​Drugs/​GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/​Guidances/​default.htm;​ http://www.fda.gov/​BiologicsBloodVaccines/​GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/​Guidances/​default.htm;​ http://www.fda.gov/​MedicalDevices/​DeviceRegulationandGuidance/​GuidanceDocuments/​default.htm;​ or http://www.regulations.gov.

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Dated: March 3, 2015.

Leslie Kux,

Associate Commissioner for Policy.

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[FR Doc. 2015-05377 Filed 3-6-15; 8:45 am]

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