Category / Research Integritiy

COVID-19 affects research into other diseases

A systematic review published late last week assesses the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on on-going and new clinical trials and research on a range of diseases [1]. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a series of public health policies, including lock down, that have crippled the healthcare systems of many countries. These measures hugely impact on study participants, care providers, researchers, trial sponsors, and research organizations conducting clinical trials. This pandemic has a substantial impact on the trial sites as they experience difficulty in the continuation of trial activities which eventually hampers the progress of the trial and delays study timelines. Most sites are struggling due to delayed subject enrolment, shortfalls in monitoring, and risks of compromised data integrity, and this situation also has a negative impact on the start of future. Researchers are also concerned regarding the delay or cancellations of trials in the pandemic, which will have financial consequences for research organizations/human resources.

According to one survey, about two-thirds of the respondents have stopped or will soon halt subject enrolment in ongoing clinical trials, one-third halted randomization, and fifty percent of respondents are delaying or planning to delay the studies.  Adopting new approaches and understanding the key risk indicators will help managers support trial sites with flexibility and ingenuity. For instance, switching patient site visits to new-trial virtualization, and telemedicine to interact with patients will help manage current clinical trials also beneficial for the post-pandemic era.

 

Reference:

  1. Sathian B, Asim M,  Banerjee I, Pizarro AB, Roy B, van Teijlingen ER, Borges do Nascimento IJ, Alhamad HK.  Impact of COVID-19 on clinical trials and clinical research: A systematic review. Nepal J Epidemiol. 2020;10(3); 878-887

 

Interdisciplinary Public Health

Yesterday the Journal of Manmohan Memorial Institute of Health Sciences published our editorial ‘Public Health is truly interdisciplinary’ [1].  This editorial was largely written to counteract some of the jurisdictional claims made in Nepal by certain people in Public Health.  These claims express themselves in arguments around the question whether Public Health is a single academic discipline or profession or whether it is a broad profession comprising many different academic disciplines.  There are two quite distinct and opposing views. Some argue that Public Health is a broad-ranging single discipline covering sub-disciplines such as Epidemiology, Management, Public Health Practice, Health Psychology, Medical Statistics, Sociology of Health & Illness and Public Health Medicine.  Those who support this argument, typically see: (a) Public Health is the overarching dominant discipline, which brings these sub-disciplines together; and (b) that a true Public Health practitioner amalgamates all these individual elements.  Others argue that Public Health is more an overarching world view or  interdisciplinary approach for wide-ranging group of professionals and academics [2]. In this view some Public Health professionals are first trained as clinicians, others as psychologists, health economists, health management, statisticians, or demographers, and so on and have later specialised in Public Health.

However,  their are people in the field claiming that Public Health is a single discipline that can only /or even best be practice and taught by those with an undergraduate degree in Public Health.  Basically suggesting you you need a Public Health degree to practice or teach the discipline.  Our editorial argues that this latter view suggests a rather limited understanding of the broad church that is Public Health.

This latest editorial is co-authored by Dr. Sharada P. Wasti in Nepal, Prof. Padam Simkhada, who is based at the University of Huddersfield and BU Visiting Faculty and Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen in the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health (CMMPH).  Both articles listed below are Open Access and free available to readers across the globe.

 

References:

  1. Wasti, S.P., van Teijlingen, E., Simkhada, P. (2020) Public Health is truly interdisciplinary. Journal of Manmohan Memorial Institute of Health Sciences 6(1): 21-22.
  2. van Teijlingen, E., Regmi, P., Adhikary, P., Aryal, N., Simkhada, P. (2019). Interdisciplinary Research in Public Health: Not quite straightforward. Health Prospect, 18(1), 4-7.

RKEDF – Research Ethics @ BU workshop

On Tuesday 19 May (11 am – 1 pm), RDS are running a practical 2 hour workshop on research ethics focusing on navigating the online ethics checklist and the review and approval process.  So if you’re in the process of putting together an ethics application or in need of a refresher, this workshop is for you.

The workshop is open to Researchers (staff).  Details of workshops available to Postgraduate Research Students can be accessed via Brightspace.

Workshop Aims:

How to navigate the online ethics checklsit and the review and approval process will be discussed, including how risk is identified.  By the end of this workshop you will have an understanding about:

  • How to complete an online ethics checklist
  • The process for gaining ethics approval
  • What makes a good application

If you’re interested in attending then reserve your place via Organisational Development.

Consultation – REF 2021 Codes of practice complaints and investigation process

This week Research England launched a consultation on the draft REF 2021 Code of Practice Complaints and Investigation process.

A summary document of the process being consulted on is accessible here, full documentation is available here.

If you would like to offer any feedback for potential inclusion in BU’s response. Please email  ref@bournemouth.ac.uk by noon 21st January 2020. 

External Survey – Research Integrity

Would you like to contribute to a research study of research integrity in the UK?

Research England, on behalf of UKRI, have commissioned Vitae in partnership with the UK Research Integrity Office (UKRIO) to conduct a study exploring what motivates researchers to maintain high standards of research integrity.

Steven Hill, Director of Research at Research England said: “Research integrity, broadly the conducting of research in a way that ensures that it is trustworthy, ethical and abides by professional standards, is vital to ensure the accuracy of the results and conclusions of research.”

Researchers experience many pressures, incentives, disciplinary norms, and personal motivations that may affect the way research is carried out. The study aims to understand these factors and how they may relate (positively or negatively) to research integrity.
You are invited to share your thoughts and experiences through this survey.

Click for more information and to access the survey.

The survey is open until 6 November 2019.

N.B. this blog post is promoting an external survey. BU is not responsible for this external content.

More pilots please!

“More pilots please!” is not a call from British Airways, Ryanair or the Royal Air Force.  No, it a reminder to students to do more piloting in their postgraduate research projects.  Between us we have read many (draft) theses and examined over 60 PhD theses external to Bournemouth University, and it is clear to us that many students do not do enough pre-testing or piloting of their research instruments.  Perhaps they did some piloting or feasibility work for their projects but don’t write enough about it.  Or they present some feasibility or piloting in their thesis but haven’t added references to methodological texts.

The term ‘pilot studies’ refers to mini versions of a full-scale study (also called ‘feasibility’ studies), as well as the specific pre-testing of a particular research instruments such as data collection tools (i.e. questionnaire or semi-structured interview schedule). Pilot studies are key to good study design [1-6].  Conducting a pilot study does not guarantee success in the main study, but it does increase the likelihood of success. Pilot studies have several of important functions in research design and can provide valuable insights to the researcher on both tools and research processes.  We think it is telling that our most cited paper on Google Scholar is not one of our papers reporting research findings but a methods paper highlighting the importance of pilot studies [2].

 

Professors Vanora Hundley & Edwin van Teijlingen

CMMPH

 

References:

  1. van Teijlingen E, Rennie, AM., Hundley, V, Graham, W. (2001) The importance of conducting & reporting pilot studies: example of Scottish Births Survey, Journal of Advanced Nursing, 34: 289-95.
  2. van Teijlingen E, Hundley, V. (2001) The importance of pilot studies, Social Research Update Issue 35, (Editor N. Gilbert), Guildford: University of Surrey. Web:  http://www.soc.surrey.ac.uk/sru/SRU35.html
  3. van Teijlingen E, Hundley, V.(2002) ‘The importance of pilot studies’ Nursing Standard 16(40): 33-36. Web: www.nursing-standard.co.uk/archives/vol16-40/pdfs/vol16w40p3336.pdf
  4. Hundley, V., van Teijlingen E, (2002) The role of pilot studies in midwifery research RCM Midwives Journal 5(11): 372-74.
  5. van Teijlingen E, Hundley, V. (2003) Pilot study, In: Lewis-Beck, M., Bryman, A. & Liao, T. (eds.) Encyclopaedia of Social Science Research Methods, Vol. 2, Orego, Sage: 823-24.
  6. van Teijlingen E, Hundley, V. (2005) Pilot studies in family planning & reproductive health care, Journal of Family Planning & Reproductive Health Care 31(3): 219-21.

 

 

Congratulations to BU sociologist

Congratulations to Dr. Shovita Dhakal Adhikari on the publication of her paper ‘Understanding ‘trafficking vulnerabilities’ among children: the responses linking to child protection issues in Nepal’ [1].  This academic paper was published earlier this month in the journal Children’s Geographies.   Shovita and her co-author Dr. Jackie Turton discuss child trafficking in Nepal within the broader framework of child protection.

The paper examines both individual (gender, ethnicity and caste) and structural (their experiences in relation to work, migration, education and lack of birth registration) vulnerabilities and their links with child trafficking as a child protection concern. The authors suggest there is a need for a more nuanced understanding of trafficking vulnerabilities as part of a continuum, rather than a distinct event, to improve outcomes for children. They use the evidence presented here to call for a holistic approach. Policies and programmes in Nepal and across the globe must be integrated within the broader concerns of child protection, thus strengthening the system from local to national level, while recognising the importance of children’s rights to participate in any decision-making.

Well done.

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

CMMPH

 

Reference:

  1. Adhikari, S.D. & Turton, J. (2019) Understanding ‘trafficking vulnerabilities’ among children: the responses linking to child protection issues in Nepal, Children’s Geographies (online first) https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14733285.2019.1676398

 

RKEDF – Research Ethics @ BU workshop

On Tuesday 8 October 2019, RDS are running a practical 2 hour workshop on the review and approval process at BU, so if you’re in the process of putting together an ethics application or you’d like a refresher, this workshop is for you.

The workshop is designed to assist Researchers (staff) in the process of obtaining ethical approval.

The review and approval process will be discussed, including how risk is identified. What makes a good an application and how to create and submit an online ethics checklist.

By the end of this workshop you will have an understanding about:

  • The process for gaining ethical approval
  • How to complete an online ethics checklist
  • What makes a good application

If you’re interested in attending then reserve your place via Organisational Development.

Research Ethics – Resources

When involving research participants in your activities, it’s important to provide them with all the information they require to make an informed decision on whether or not they wish to participate.  We’ve recently updated the Participant Information Sheet, so please download the latest version of the template available from the research ethics blog.

We’ve also added  ‘Research Ethics FAQs‘ as a new resource, which we hope you’ll find useful!

RKEDF – Research Ethics @ BU workshop

On Tuesday 8 October 2019, RDS are running a practical 2 hour workshop on the review and approval process at BU, so if you’re in the process of putting together an ethics application or you’d like a refresher, this workshop is for you.

The workshop is designed to assist Researchers (staff) in the process of obtaining ethical approval.

The review and approval process will be discussed, including how risk is identified. What makes a good an application and how to create and submit an online ethics checklist.

By the end of this workshop you will have an understanding about:

  • The process for gaining ethical approval
  • How to complete an online ethics checklist
  • What makes a good application

If you’re interested in attending then reserve your place via Organisational Development.

RKEDF – Research Ethics @ BU workshop

On Tuesday 8 October 2019, RDS are running a practical 2 hour workshop on the review and approval process at BU, so if you’re in the process of putting together an ethics application or you’d like a refresher, this workshop is for you.

The workshop is designed to assist Researchers (staff) in the process of obtaining ethical approval.

The review and approval process will be discussed, including how risk is identified. What makes a good an application and how to create and submit an online ethics checklist.

By the end of this workshop you will have an understanding about:

  • The process for gaining ethical approval
  • How to complete an online ethics checklist
  • What makes a good application

If you’re interested in attending then reserve your place via Organisational Development.

Training opportunity – completing and submitting your IRAS application

Are you currently in the process of designing, setting up or planning your research study, and would like to extend your project into the NHS?

Yes? Then you may want to take advantage of this training opportunity.

Oliver Hopper (Research & Development Coordinator, Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospital) and Suzy Wignall (Clinical Governance Advisor, RDS)  will be running a training session on how to use, and complete your own application within the IRAS system.

IRAS (Integrated Research Application System) is the system used to gain approvals from the NHS Research Ethics Committee and Health Research Authority, before rolling out your study to NHS Trusts. To support this, the session will include the background to research ethics and the approvals required for NHS research.

The session will also be interactive, and so as participants, you will have the opportunity to go through the form itself and complete the sections, with guidance on what the reviewers are expecting to see in your answers, and tips on how to best use the system.

The training will take place in Studland House – Lansdowne Campus, room 103 Tuesday 20th August at 09:30am – 12:30pm.

Get in touch with Research Ethics if you would like to register your interest and book a place.