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PHA - improving health and social care through research


Public Health Agency

Type: News
Region: Republic of Ireland
Northern Ireland

Four research fellowships, awarded by Health and Social Care Research and Development (HSC R&D) Division at the Public Health Agency (PHA), will improve understanding, approaches and ultimately outcomes for patients in specific areas of head and neck cancer; breast cancer; the effect of antibiotic use in some hospital acquired infections; and end of life care in the intensive care unit.The fellowship recipients, selected from a pool of 24 applications, were the strongest candidates, all working within well-established health and social care research centres in Northern Ireland and presenting the very highest quality research proposals.This year's recipients are:Mr Michael Moran, Academic Clinical Fellow, Belfast Health and Social Care Trust (BHSCT), working in the field of head and neck cancer, in particular examining the significance of human papillomavirus infection in the disease process;Mr Gareth Irwin, Academic Clinical Fellow, BHSCT, working on a test to identify hard-to-treat breast cancers that are unlikely to respond to existing drugs, and therefore should be targeted by novel therapeutics;Ms Geraldine Conlon, a pharmacist working in the area of antibiotic policy and healthcare-associated infections (specifically MRSA and Clostridium difficile - Associated Diarrhoea - CDAD);Mrs Una St Ledger, a nurse in BHSCT studying moral distress in end of life care in the intensive care unit.Describing the importance of the HSC R&D Division fellowship awards, Dr Michael Neely, Assistant Director, HSC R&D Division at PHA, said: "These fellowships are an important step towards a research career for health and social care professionals. The stringent selection process examines the potential benefits that the study will bring to health and social care services, to service users and the public. The commitment of the candidate to a career in health and social care research and how they will involve service users and the public, in all stages of their study, are also considered. "We hope that doctoral fellows will become leaders in health and social care research and use the expertise they gain to make a significant contribution to the evidence base underpinning their professional work. "Building the research ethos and capacity in health and social care is vital to ensure the best new treatments and better, more cost-effective services continue to be developed. Northern Ireland's researchers are already leading world class studies, making a difference to the quality and effectiveness of care here and across the world. The fellowships programme will ensure that this success continues into the future. "Alongside their research study, the fellows will have the opportunity to undertake an intensive and bespoke training programme to develop their expertise as researchers. The results of these research studies will be used to improve future health and social services in Northern Ireland.This year's fellowship awards are currently open, closing on Friday 14 October 2011. Applications are welcome from individuals employed by Health and Social Care (HSC) or voluntary/not-for-profit organisations in Northern Ireland involved in health or social care provision. Guidance and an application form are available by clicking here.



Rights: Public
Suggested citation:

Public Health Agency. (2011) PHA - improving health and social care through research [Online]. Available from: [Accessed: 20th March 2018].


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