The Directorate of Research Information And Regulatory Affairs (DRIRA) is one of the three coordinating Directorates at the National Institute for Medical Research.

The overall objective of the Directorate is to register and regulate the conduct of health research in Tanzania, support national disease surveillance and emergency systems, promote the publication of research findings and maintain a comprehensive, up-to-date archive of research documents and information.

The Directorate has three (3) Sections as follows:

  • Health Research Regulation;
  • Disease Surveillance; and
  • Research Publications and Documentation.


Health Research Regulation Section: The Section maintains a system for the registration of health research carried out in Tanzania and serves as the Secretariat for the National Health Research Ethics Review sub-Committee (NatHREC). This Section facilitates the ethical review and approval process, including post-approval processes to include material and data transfer agreements and permission to publish health research data.  The section coordinates compliance monitoring of studies approved at National level or through Zonal/Institutional Research Ethics Committees and oversees these registered Committees’ functions. The section periodically schedules training on health research regulation and ethics and when requested.


Disease Surveillance Section: This Section is the institutional focal point for all matters related to national disease surveillance systems and public health events; it is responsible for coordinating NIMR’s provision of technical support for effective implementation of integrated disease surveillance and outbreak investigations and control in Tanzania; the section coordinates support for the analysis and interpretation of data and scientific literature needed for the preparedness, implementation, evaluation and control efforts towards public health events including guiding documents and supports research activities during public health events and emergencies. The section acts as a liaison with National, Regional and Global Surveillance Networks.


Research Publications and Documentation Section: The Section maintains effective management, preservation and accessioning of records of health research reports and institutional publications and development and updating of policies and procedures of the Institute’s research publication activities and management. NIMR publishes the Tanzania Journal of Health Research (TJHR) on a quarterly basis.  This section acts as the Secretariat for TJHR and facilitates publishing.  The section also maintains infrastructure to support research data management and manages the national health research data repository and other research information systems.