Jul 12, 2022

GOHi spotlight: Dónal O’Mathúna

An associate professor in the Ohio State College of Nursing and the Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities in the College of Medicine, Dónal O’Mathúna is also the director of the Ohio State Cochrane Affiliate. O’Mathúna‘s research interests started in natural products chemistry within pharmacy, shifted to bioethics and ultimately led to disasters, pandemics and humanitarian crises. He has been a member of several research ethics committees and Institutional Review Boards in the United States and Ireland and led several funded projects to understand disaster research ethics better.

O’Mathúna worked with GOHi on One Health Ethics and Regulatory Procedures (OHEARP): a Fogarty bioethics supplement to GOHi’s flagship program, the One Health Eastern Africa Research Training Program (OHEART). This research investigated significant barriers to the timely initiation of One Health research projects and the ethical issues arising in One Health research. Currently, OHEARP is in the next phase of research, which involves conducting qualitative interviews based on an interview guide developed from the survey analysis.

Building on this successful work, O’Mathúna was recently awarded R25 from the National Institutes of Health to establish a master’s degree program in One Health and Emergency Research Ethics at the University of Nairobi. This initiative will strengthen research ethics capacity in low and middle-income countries by increasing the number of experts in international One Health and Emergency Research Ethics in Kenya and beyond.