Institutional Review Board (IRB)

UnityPoint Health - Meriter Hospital

UnityPoint Health - Meriter IRB

UnityPoint Health – Meriter Institutional Review Board (IRB) is responsible for protecting the rights and welfare of the human subjects who participate in research conducted within Meriter facilities.

Meriter has an agreement with the federal government to comply with the code of federal regulations that protect human subjects. The agreement also binds Meriter to ethical principles described in the Belmont Report.

Research Requirements

Interventional Research at Meriter Hospital
Unit Support – Work with the Meriter employed unit manager or director on a collaboration endorsement letter for your research. Submit the letter with your study application.

Supplemental Forms - Additional templates for consent, HIPAA Authorization and more.
Enrolling Non-English Speaking Subjects

UnityPoint Health – Meriter allows UW-Madison investigators to use research documents that have been translated by UW Health Interpreter Services. Please submit the translated document along with a signed certification of translation.

UW-Madison investigators may use the UW Language Line for interpretation of the spoken word between the research team and research subjects. This can be arranged through the UW Health Interpreter Services Manager 608-265-7423.

Funding for Translation and Language Line Interpreting

  • Investigators are responsible for all costs associated with translation and interpretation.
  • Meriter Foundation Funding - Please add translation and interpretation for non-English subjects in your grant request budget. The Foundation is willing to fund these costs.
Reporting Requirements
View reporting requirements for Human subjects research, ceded research, exempt research and research when Meriter is not engaged.
UnityPoint Health - Meriter as a Research Site
There are many details to consider when planning research. Some are required for IRB approval. Other details are outside of the IRB purview.

Online IRB Submissions

Request an Account
  1. Visit the Meriter IRB online application site.
  2. Click the "Request New Account" button below the login block.
  3. Complete the required fields (view tip sheet).

Accounts are set up during regular business hours, Monday - Friday. You will receive an e-mail notification in 24-72 hours when your account has been activated.

Who Needs a User Account?
All study personnel listed on the study application will need a Meriter IRB account.

Study personnel are those who have contact with Meriter patients, patient records or patient specimens for research purposes.

Individuals conducting Quality Assurance or Program Improvement projects do not need a user account. View instructions for submitting a non-regulated project.
User Account and Human Subject Protection Training
  • All study personnel must fulfill the Meriter Human Subject Training Requirement. Compliance with this requirement is tracked through the online submission system.
  • Send a recent, dated proof of completion for your human subjects protection training to the UnityPoint Health - Meriter IRB Office.
  • Submissions are electronically blocked from reaching the IRB if even one person on a submission fails to have current training associated with their user account.

Initial Submission to Meriter IRB
  • Contact the IRB Office with questions or concerns.

Liz Michaels, MS, CIP

IRB Coordinator

(608) 417-6411

Single IRB Review

Relying/Reviewing IRB Process

Where do I start? 

  1. UW-Madison Investigators: Regardless of who the Reviewing IRB will be, contact UW Reliance ( to determine next steps.
  2. UW-Madison Investigators will complete an application at UW first.
  3. Complete a Study Application at UnityPoint Health - Meriter.
  4. Do not begin your research until the relying and reviewing IRB institutions approve your research.

What you'll need for Meriter Application

Regardless of whether Meriter is the reviewing or relying IRB.

  1. Meriter IRB User Accounts for study team members listed on the Meriter study application.
  2. Send IRB Office Human Subjects Protection Training Transcript See Mandatory Training.
Eligible Research for Meriter to Cede Review
  • Commercial or sponsored studies
  • Multi-site or collaborative research that qualifies for expedited or a convened IRB review.
Ineligible Research for Meriter to Cede Review
  • Research that meets one of the federal exemptions. Exempt research has no IRB of oversight. There is no reviewing IRB, therefore Meriter cannot cede review.
  • UnityPoint Health – Meriter IRB acts on behalf of the institution and has the authority to decline ceding IRB review for any new research if there are extenuating factors (e.g. a conflict of interest, a study that does not fit with Meriter's culture and mission, etc.). Meriter IRB may consult with the institutional official as necessary
Research where the majority of recruitment and research procedures don't occur at UnityPoint Health - Meriter

Submit a cede application to request Meriter to cede review to another SMART IRB institution. For commercial research, please contact the IRB Office for additional requirements.



Mandatory Training

Have I already satisfied the training requirements?

UnityPoint Health - Meriter requires all researchers and IRB members to take human subjects protection training every three years.

Meriter accepts CITI training completion reports from UW-Madison and other institutions.

What happens if I don't have the training?
Any IRB submission you are listed on will be blocked from reaching Meriter IRB. All research staff must have active training before their submission will upload for review. Includes all submissions.
Taking the CITI Course
  • Follow the steps below:
  1. Log in to the CITI website.
  2. Register
  3. Choose an institution: UW affiliates choose UW. All others choose Meriter
  4. Complete Registration Steps
  5. Sign up for Required Modules
  6. Email your CITI Transcript to Liz Michaels
  7. Locate your CITI Transcript
  • Use multiple login sessions to complete the modules. The CITI system will save your answers to the quizzes at the end of each module.
  • Passing Score - You need an aggregate score of 80% for all the quizzes.
Questions or Problems
Technical issues with the CITI Site contact:
Phone: (888) 529-5929

Supplemental Forms for Researchers

Record Review Research Forms
Interventional Research Forms

Meriter Department Letter of Support
Use this to document how UnityPoint Health – Meriter staff will help facilitate your research on our premises. The letter should be signed by a UnityPoint Health - Meriter employed Director or Manager. 

Permission to Contact Form (HIPAA Compliant)

Please use UW-Madison Consent Template 

HIPAA Authorization Form

Meriter Site Supplement

Regulations and Ethics

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

HIPAA and Research Overview

HIPAA Implications of UW - Meriter JOA on Data Sharing
As part of our assurance, Meriter agrees to follow the ethical principles for human research in the Belmont Report.

Human Subjects Research vs. Quality Assurance

View this Chart to determine if your project is regulated human subjects research, quality assurance or program improvement.

Follow these directions to submit your quality assurance or program improvement project to Meriter IRB.