Applications for approval of programmes or requests for opinions must be sent to the Commission by electronic means using the appropriate forms. In the interest of parsimony and to avoid an overload of work, the Commission issues an opinion on research "programmes" rather than specific studies. By "programmes" is meant a set of manipulations relating to the same theme and/or using the same method.
For student theses, the promoter guarantees compliance with ethical rules by signing a commitment form completed by the student. These forms are designed to raise awareness among students and researchers about the issue of protecting research participants.
With the entry into force of the Act of 4 April 2014 regulating the mental health care professions and amending Royal Decree No. 78 of 10 November 1967 on the exercise of health care professions, the clinical psychologist is included among the health care professions.
As a result, it is necessary to obtain a favourable opinion from an ethics committee with full accreditation for trials, studies and investigations aimed at developing the knowledge specific to the practice of the profession of clinical psychologist (Cliniques Saint-Luc hospitalo-facultaire ethics committee).
The "practice of clinical psychology" is defined, by the coordinated law of 10 May 2015, as the "habitual performance of autonomous acts the purpose of which is, or is presented as having the purpose, with regard to a human being and within a scientifically substantiated framework of clinical psychology, of preventing, examining, screening or establishing the psychodiagnosis of actual or supposed psychological or psychosomatic suffering, and the care or support of that person".
Three criteria can be used to verify whether the project is a clinical psychology project:
- the study is conducted with a clinical population
- the place of recruitment or testing of participants (patients) is a care facility
- is the objective of the study clinical? Or, is there a measure of psychological or psychosomatic suffering whose objective is to better understand this suffering (increase knowledge about this suffering)?
If the answer to at least one of these criteria is positive, the project is a clinical psychology project.
Cliniques Saint-Luc hospitalo-facultaire ethics committee:
Submissions: https://www.saintluc.be/recherche/ctc-soumission-initiale.php (with simplified submission form for student thesis)