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DRISHTi Health Research Ethics

A 10-week online e-learning course that aims to build capacity on ethics practices among health researchers in the Indian context.




10 Weeks

Fees & structure

INR 7000 (limited fee waivers available)

Last date to apply

Currently, we do not have any ongoing cohorts. Please stay updated by following our social media channels for the latest information


Online with weekly live sessions


About the course

Why DRISHTi Health Research Ethics?

The medical and public health response to the COVID19 pandemic suggested a deficiency of knowledge of health research ethics. Promoting drugs without adequate data on efficacy, frequent retractions of publications, compromising the safety of frontline health workers, lack of empathy in the lockdown measures, and a barrage of false information are only a few examples of the shortcomings.

As an immediate response to the need, the DRISHTi Health Research Ethics for health researchers was launched in July 2021. The 10-week long digital course has been designed for health researchers with core focus on health research ethics in the Indian context. 

What will the course cover?

The course covers 10 modules, which are as follows:

  1. Introduction to Bioethics

  2. History of bioethics in India

  3. Informed Consent in Health Research

  4. Risk-benefit Analysis

  5. Responsible conduct in research & conflict of interest

  6. Research Ethics Guidelines (ICMR 2017 guidelines)

  7. Good clinical practice

  8. Ethics committees and processes of ethics review

  9. Community engagement and research with specific populations

  10. COVID-19 pandemic through an Ethics lens

The bonus modules of the course also cover material on health communication, social issues in health research, research methodology, and research participant voices. 

Who can apply?

Our course is primarily for early-career health researchers and young health professionals planning to do research. But if you are keen on learning about research ethics, health communications, and the various ways in which the ethical standard of research involving human participants can be upheld, you will surely benefit from this course.

What will you receive?

Certificate of completion

Information about earlier cohorts/testimonials 

The Health Research Ethics course has completed 4 cohorts so far, with a total of 100+ participants. 

Alumni testimonial

“The course has been carefully curated to add tremendous value for anyone involved in biomedical, health, or translational research. The lectures inspire you to become a part of the health research ethics discourse in the country rather than just providing a lot of technical facts. The biweekly seminars involved case studies to cement our understanding from the recorded video lectures and inspired us to approach complex bioethical questions from diverse perspectives. As someone learning health research ethics for the first time, I can surely say that the course made health research ethics one of my favorite subjects.” – Ketan Thorat, Scientist 'D', Regulatory Compliance Officer,  Institute for Stem Cell Science and Regenerative Medicine, Bangalore Life Sciences Cluster

“The occasional debates, case discussions and assignments were helpful in reinforcing the content and highlighting the complex nature of doing ethical research in a diverse country like India. The additional material in the form of interviews with relevant stakeholders, like patient rights advocates, doctors from the field, mental justice researchers from under-served communities, and early career researchers, provided key insights into the social and professional context of research investigations.” – Saloni Diwakar, Assistant Professor, Fergusson College; Founder at Nolmë Labs

Discover the course architects

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Anant Bhan
PI and Mentor, Sangath Bhopal

Anant is a researcher in bioethics, global health, mental health, health equity and health policy and is based in Bhopal, India. He is an Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ethics, Yenepoya (deemed to be University), Mangaluru, India and Mentor and PI, Sangath (Bhopal Hub), India.

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Sunita Sheel Bandewar
Director, Forum for Medical Ethics Society (FMES)

Sunita is an anthropologist and bioethicist by training. She has worked extensively in the areas of women's health, global health, and bioethics with several publications to her credit. She is also one of the working editors of the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics.

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Nandini Kumar
Retd. As Deputy Director-General Senior Grade from ICMR

Nandini is the Vice President at Forums for Ethics Review Committees in India. She is a Fogarty Fellow graduate in bioethics in the University of Toronto, experienced in bioethics education management and closely associated in the formation of various national ethical guidelines.

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Roli Mathur
Head, ICMR Bioethics Unit

Currently Roli heads the ICMR Bioethics Unit and is the Scientific Advisor to the National Ethics Committee Registry at Department of Health Research. At ICMR, she has made pivotal contributions towards the development of national guidelines, ethics committee tools and building capacity of ethics committees. She has led the formulation of ICMR National Guidelines for Biomedical and Health Research and several other ethics guidance documents.

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Nitya Gogtay
Professor (Additional), Clinical Pharmacology, Seth GS Medical College and King Edward Memorial Hospital, Mumbai

She has over 100 peer reviewed publications to her credit. She serves on the Editorial board of the Journal of Association of Physicians of India and has been the past Editor [2012-2016] of the Journal of Postgraduate Medicine. he also serves on the boards of several IRBs.

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Vina Vaswani
Professor, Founder and Director, Center for Ethics, Yenepoya (deemed to be) University

Vina holds an MD in Forensic medicine and an M.A. in Bioethics. She is the founder & Director of the Centre for Ethics & a Professor at the department of Forensic Medicine at Yenepoya (Deemed to be University), one of the few places in India with dedicated ethics teaching.

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Mala Ramanathan
Professor, Achutha Menon Centre for Health Science Studies, SCTIMST, Thiruvananthapuram

Mala is trained and qualified in Statistics, Medical Anthropology, and Research Ethics. She is a Working Editor of the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics, and has served in several ethics committees in the country.

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Olinda Timms
Adjunct Associate Professor in the Division of Health and Humanities at St. Johns Research Institute, Bangalore

She has worked as Consultant at Private and Mission Hospitals in Bangalore since 1987, and has been teaching and writing on Medical Ethics. Dr. Timms is a Working Editor of the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics. She serves on the Institution Ethics Committee of hospitals and research institutions in Bangalore.

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Amar Jesani
Bioethicist and Social Science researcher

Amar is a pioneering researcher, academician, teacher, and activist in the ethics field. He is the Founder of the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics, and has co-authored and co-edited 9 books.

Funders & partners

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