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Research Compliance Updates

The Office of Research is excited to bring several items to your attention. Your input and comments have been essential in assisting us to improve the services provided by our team and we thank you for your continued support.

Office of Research Quality Assurance/Quality Improvement Team

The Quality Assurance/Quality Improvement (QA/QI) team is now part of the Office of Research Compliance group. The QA/QI team’s commitment is to promote a culture of compliance with the highest legal and ethical standards for the conduct of all research. It is dedicated to educating the research community at Drexel (and its affiliates) and those research communities at collaborating institutions striving for research excellence.

QA/QI has free, unlimited and unrestricted access to all books, records, files, property, systems and personnel of Drexel University and its subsidiaries during reviews of research related activities. To the degree that audit rights have been established, affiliates, partnerships, joint ventures, licensees, contractors, vendors, distributors, third parties or other operations are also subject to quality assurance/quality improvement review. The QA/QI team has the authority to recommend improvements and to monitor the implementation of approved recommendations and has the duty to report findings to the appropriate compliance committee when deemed applicable.

New Fringe Rates for Sponsored for Sponsored Projects

In addition to the recently concluded negotiations with the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Division of Cost Allocation (DCA) concerning the F&A (indirect cost) rate, Drexel University has been able to conclude negotiations with DCA on its fringe benefit rates. The result is the approval of a schedule of new Fringe Benefit Rates for Drexel University’s sponsored projects for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2014. The new approved fringe benefit rates are as follows:

Fringe Benefit Rates: from 7/1/2014 to 6/30/2015

Full Time Employees

33.0%

Part Time Employees

10.2%

Clinical Faculty

14.3%

New Conflict of Interest Requirements Affecting Peer Reviewers

Faculty and Staff who act as peer reviewers for research proposals are advised that the National Institutes of Health recently released the implementation of a policy on managing real or perceived conflicts of interest held by non-Federal employees participating as peer reviewers on “Research and Development Contract Projects”. As a result of this policy, peer reviewers now must identify to the Designated Federal Official the existence of any conflicts of interest that can bias their judgment when evaluating project concepts or proposals. Further details can be found at:

  • NOT-OD-14-069 (NIH Policy for Managing Conflict of Interest in the Peer Review of Concepts and Proposals for Research and Development Contract Projects); or
  • 42 C.F.R. Part 52h (Peer Reviewer Regulations)

New Reporting Period Availability for Effort Reporting

The implementation of the significant upgrade to the Effort Reporting System was a success thanks to the entire research community. Effort reports for the July 1 – December 31, 2013 period are now available. Staff members responsible for pre-reviewing and/or certifying the reports have been notified of the period’s availability by email and should complete their step in the process as soon as possible.

More information about these topics can be found at the Office of Research website.  Contact Karen Skinner at 215-255-7883 or kbs32@drexel.edu for all QA/QI inquiries.  All other questions can be directed to Julie Ford at 215-895-2947 or jjf47@drexel.edu.  All feedback is most appreciated.