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Mission and Purpose

The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Institutional Review Board (IRB) is an administrative body established to protect the rights and welfare of human subjects in research conducted under the directive of DSHS and requests submitted to DSHS programs that involve the use of identifiable information or specimens. This includes human subject research contracted to public or private entities. The IRB has the authority to approve, require modifications in, or disapprove all research activities that fall within its jurisdiction as specified in the federal regulations, state regulations and statutes, and institutional policy.

DSHS IRB Policy (PDF) Board & Staff FAQs

Texas Health & Human Services (HHS) DSHS IRB and HHSC IRB Scope and Responsibilities

There are two IRBs within HHS, each with the responsibility to protect human subjects in research or the use of their data.

  • DSHS IRB reviews DSHS-affiliated* social, behavioral, educational, and health science research.
  • IRB2 reviews HHSC-affiliated research on mental health, substance use, and intellectual and/or developmental disabilities. The IRB2 website

The IRB accepts the Office for Human Research Protections, Protecting Human Research Participants or Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) training certificates. The IRB may consider training certificates issued from the investigator/team members’ home institution if the human research courses satisfy this requirement.

Last updated March 2, 2021