Clinical Research Potential in Victorian Hospitals: the Victorian Clinician Researcher Needs Analysis Survey

Harriet Hiscock, Kay Ledgerwood, Margaret Danchin, Elif Ekinci, Elizabeth Johnson, Andrew Wilson

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    Background: The 2012 McKeon Review highlighted the role of clinician researchers in patient based research and the need to foster this capacity. While anecdotal evidence suggests that clinician researchers are under threat and underfunded, Australian data on barriers and enablers of clinician-led research are scant.

    To describe (i) characteristics of clinician researchers; (ii) for research-active clinicians: areas of research, barriers/enablers of research and factors associated with funding success; and (iii) for research-inactive clinicians: enablers of future research.

    An online survey distributed through the Bio21 Cluster to clinicians (doctors, nurses, allied health professionals) in 15 Victorian hospitals between November 2011 and January 2012.

    Seven hundred and seventy of 1027 (75%) of respondents were research-active and were more likely to be male, medical doctors, aged 45–54 years, to work full-time and have a higher degree (all P < 0.01). Of clinicians with a higher degree, 28% were research-inactive. Clinicians identified protected research time (50%), designated research space (42%), clinical trial coordinators (35%), institutional funding (34%) and mentoring (33%) as critical enablers of research. Research-inactive clinicians identified protected research time as the key enabler of future research.

    To realise recommendations in the McKeon Review, hospitals and research bodies will need to protect research time and provide space and funding. Engaging research-inactive clinicians will build research capacity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)477-482
    Number of pages6
    JournalInternal Medicine Journal
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - May 2014


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