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OST Research Review Board

The Oglala Sioux Tribe Research Review Board (OST RRB)

The Oglala Sioux Tribe Research Review Board (OST RRB) is an appointed body at Pine Ridge Reservation under the sponsorship of Oglala Sioux Tribe Health Administration office, charged with the responsibility to ensure that all research funded or non-funded involving human subjects protects the rights of those subjects. All research that involves any type of interaction with human subjects – from simple surveys to complex biomedical procedures – must be reviewed and approved by the OST RRB prior to starting the research. Through the process of review and approval, the OST RRB fulfills institutional obligations for Oglala Sioux Tribe and the federal Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) and exercises ethical human subjects research practices as specified and required by federal regulations. To facilitate that process, OST RRB also seeks to play an educational role such human subjects' research practices, and understands collective obligations to the human subjects.

The Origin and Role of OST RRBs

The Oglala Sioux Tribe Research Review Board (hereafter referred to as “OSTRRB”) was established through the Oglala Sioux Tribal Health and Human Services during the September 12, 2006 meeting and given full authority to regulate and monitor research by Oglala Sioux Tribe Ordinance #07-53.

The OSTRRB is an independent body that reviews research conducted within the exterior boundaries of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and/or involving tribal members or resources to minimize potential harms for the participants, families, and the community and to maximize potential benefits for the participants, families, and the community. The OSTRRB:

Has the authority to approve and disapprove research conducted on within the exterior boundaries of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and/or involving tribal members or resources; and

Is comprised of members from various sectors of the community to ensure the concerns of the groups involved in research are represented; and

Has experience and expertise in the area of research ethics; and

Has the authority to reduce conditions or decisions imposed on a particular research project by another review body; and Shall not be superseded by another review body to reduce OSTRRB conditions or decision regarding a particular research project; and

Communicates regularly with the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council.

In order to develop such a system, the federal government convened a National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects in 1974 to identify core ethical principles for human subjects’ research and to make recommendations regarding their institutionalization. The recommendations of the Commission were presented in 1979 in a document known as the Belmont Report, which became and remains the guiding document for ethical human subjects’ practices. The recommendations of the Belmont Report are codified in federal regulations and requirements that mandate a system of review and approval of all human subjects’ research. That system is organized at the federal level by the Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP), and administered locally by RRBs at all institutions.

Statement of Commitment from the OST RRB

The OST RRB recognizes that human subjects review processes introduce an additional step for investigators to commence their research. However, human subjects review processes, are federally required for all institutions engaged in human subject research. The process generally serves a goal on which all involved can agree: Human subjects who participate in any type of research deserve to be treated with the utmost respect for their rights and dignity, and they should be protected from any undue harm during their participation in research. The OST RRB intends to work with investigators to facilitate the initiation and completion of the important research conducted by our faculty, staff and students. The OST RRB is committed to guiding investigators in developing their applications and to facilitate the approval process efficiently.

Oglala Sioux Tribe Research Review Board

OST Health Administration - ATTN: OSTRRB

PO Box 5011

Pine Ridge, South Dakota  57770

Elizabeth “Liz” Belt   •   Phone: 605-867-1704   •   Fax: 605-867-2063   •   Email: