As part of its drive to develop research capacity in palliative and end of life care, AIIHPC launched the clinical fellowships programme earlier this year. The fellowships are targeted at health and social care professionals involved in clinical practice in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland who are currently conducting or intend to undertake small-scale research-related projects relevant to palliative care (e.g.: Symptom management, psychosocial interventions, health services research).
The awards, worth €10,000 each, will support the fellows to develop, refine and complete their research over the next 12 months.
The four fellowships have been awarded to:
- An examination of healthcare professionals’ barriers and facilitators to adopting e-learning in palliative care education, led by Joanne Callinan, librarian at Milford Care Centre, Limerick.
- Physiotherapy led palliative exercise programme for Parkinson’s disease (PEP-PD) patients in an out-patient setting: A feasibility study led by David Hegarty, physiotherapist at St Francis Hospice, Dublin.
- The role of connected health in the measurement of autonomic dysfunction in cancer, led by Dr Brenda O’Connor, specialist registrar, Palliative Medicine, Our Lady’s Hospice & Care Services, Dublin.
- A prospective observational cohort study of the assessment of quality of care provided by a specialist palliative care service in Ireland, from patients’ reported perspectives, using a validated outcome tool, led by Martina O’Reilly, quality & safety coordinator, Milford Care Centre, Limerick.
AIIHPC head of research, Dr Sonja McIlfatrick, commented: “The clinical research fellowships offer individuals valuable opportunities to undertake clinically relevant and innovative research within their area of expertise. We are therefore delighted to award these Fellowships to Joanne, David, Brenda and Martina who represent a broad range of disciplines and backgrounds.
“It is positive to see such a wonderful breath of palliative care research taking place across the island of Ireland. We wish the fellows well with their research and look forward to seeing some of the positive outcomes arising from their work.”