Date: 18 April 2019
Research is the innovation that brings better healthcare and treatments to patients in the NHS and it is part of the NIHR’s role to ensure the talent pool of research active clinicians continues to thrive. The NIHR Clinical Research Network (CRN) Infection Specialty Group is helping do just that by making it a focus for their work.
Dr Jane Minton, NIHR CRN National Specialty Lead for Infection, recently led an event attended by almost 60 NHS infection clinicians from across the country, which aimed to support more infection clinicians in developing their research career. She says:
“It’s really important that research takes places in all medical specialties and that all patients have the opportunity to take part. Infection is a tricky area to conduct research for many reasons. For example, some patients are very ill when they come into hospital or perhaps there’s some stigma attached to their condition so these are real barriers that can affect the ability to deliver research. These are areas in which we need to provide additional support to researchers to help them overcome these issues, while developing their careers.”
Many presentations were delivered throughout the course of the day and covered the breadth of sub-specialties for infection research as well as outlining some of the support available from the NIHR to help clinicians fulfil their research career prospects.
Dr Fiona McGill, Academic Clinical Lecturer at University of Liverpool has been involved in research for a few years. She presented an overview of her training and experience in clinical research studies and said:
“I primarily got involved in research to experience it as a doctor. It is useful to have the experience and understanding if you are asking your patients to take part in studies or you are trying to interpret research yourself. As I’ve got more experience, I’ve learnt it is a vital way to effect change in the NHS.”
The day also included breakout sessions which discussed some of the barriers being faced in more detail; these have given the Infection Specialty Group some areas to focus on in terms of developing localised support for their researchers.
Learn more about how the NIHR is supporting early career researchers on the Infection section of the NIHR website, via the NIHR Academy or your local Research Design Service.
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