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Locality Authorisation

Whakamanahia ā-Wāhi

In order to obtain approval for health research to commence, the following areas must be addressed.

This process is customised for individual research projects, so you will need to discuss the requirements for your research project with us.

Contact Health Research South for assistance:



All health research studies must be registered with the Health Research South office


All health research requires a study protocol. The size of the project determines the level of detail and formality required. Two examples of standard protocols are linked below.

Scientific Peer Review

Read details of the peer review process

Ethical Review

All health research in the Southern DHB and DSM requires ethical review.

Ethical review will be carried out by either the Health and Disabilities Ethics Committees (HDEC) or University of Otago Human Ethics (Health). The choice of committee will depend on the nature of your research.

Research finances


Contracts between the University of Otago or Southern DHB and sponsors for grants and commercial trials must be handles by the Health Research South office (Southern DHB contracts) or your Research and Enterprise Research Adviser (University of Otago contracts).

Alerts for patients participating in clinical trials

For patient safety and clinician information, all interventional clinical research projects approved within the Southern DHB are required to have a paper alert sheet giving information on trial treatment in the patient’s file.

Consultation with Māori

This is required by the University of Otago and the Southern DHB for all health research.

An agreement between the two organisations enables the Southern DHB to access the University’s consultation process.

Details of the process are at the link below.

Consultation with Southern DHB and DSM

Southern DHB and OMS senior staff need to know and agree to research taking place in their area. Some key staff are signatories to the Locality Authorisation process, whereas others need to be informed of projects in order to accommodate for resources required.

  • For all projects, Health Research South will advise on which staff need to be informed.

HDEC Locality Authorisation for University of Otago Research

All University of Otago research which requires Health and Disabilities Ethics Committees (HDEC) approval and is not carried out in the Southern District Health Board should use this process.