PHD Projects

PhD Projects 2017 – 2021

COHESION: Core Outcomes in Neonatal Encephalopathy
Fiona Quirke is pursuing her HRB NEPTuNE project ‘COHESION: a core outcome set for the prevention and treatment of hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy’.
How can randomised trials become part of routine care and best utilise current clinical care pathways?
Gloria Emmanuel’s (TCD) research focus is on addressing the question ‘How can randomised trials become part of routine care and best utilise current clinical care pathways?
Recruiting women during pregnancy and childbirth to clinical trials
Vivienne Hanrahan’s doctoral research ‘Recruiting women during pregnancy and childbirth to clinical trials – the barriers and enablers for trial recruiters’ addresses one of the top 10 questions identified by the PRioRiTy PSP Study.
Informed Consent in Clinical Trials
Lydia’s PhD project aims to further our understanding of informed consent and identify how emerging technologies including electronic consent may be used to streamline clinical trials.
Registry Based Randomised Controlled Trials (rRCT
Niamh’s doctoral research is focused on the conduct of Registry Based Randomised Controlled Trials (rRCT). She will report on patients’ knowledge expectations for recruitment to a rRCT as well as devise guidelines for the reporting of rRCTs. Presently, she is completing a narrative review of rRCT’s with the view to defining rRCT nomenclature for identifying future registry based clinical trials. She is supervised by Dr Frances Shiely (Senior Lecturer and Director of Education, HRB Clinical Research Facility, University College Cork) and Prof. Joe Eustace (Director of the HRB Clinical Research Facility, University College Cork).
A comparison of statistical methods to compensate for missing data in clinical trials
Courtney’s research compares a variety of statistical methods, such as multiple imputation or linear mixed modeling, to compensate for missing data in clinical trials. She is simulating clinical trial datasets under a range of study designs, and then varying the pattern and percent of missingness in the trial outcome variables. Her aim is to determine which statistical method is superior in compensating for the missing data in each scenario. She is supervised by Dr. Ricardo Segurado (Assoc Prof in Biostatistics, UCD) and Assoc Prof. Mary Codd (Assoc Prof in Biostatistics and Epidemiology, UCD/Assoc Dean Public Health, UCD/Director UCD-CSTAR).

PhD Projects 2014 – 2018

Methods of disseminating and translating research findings to health care professionals & other stakeholders
Paper one is a Cochrane systematic review assessing the effects of Summary of Findings tables on communicating key findings of systematic reviews of healthcare interventions to any potential user eg. patients and their families or carers, healthcare professionals, policy makers, health systems managers, systematic review authors or other stakeholders.
Risk-Adopted Approaches To Clinical Trial Monitoring
Background: In 2012, the Health Research Board (HRB) established a number of Clinical Research Facilities (CRF) in Irish universities. Since then, Irish universities such as University College Cork (UCC) has assumed the role of study sponsor for academic clinical trials. Under the EU’s Clinical Trial Directive 2001/20/EC, study sponsors such as UCC must ensure that trials are adequately monitored.
Barriers and facilitators to statistical rigour in academic-led clinical trial design, conduct, monitoring, analysis, reporting and dissemination of findings
The focus of this PhD research is on understanding the roles and responsibilities of statisticians, their involvement in academic and industry-led clinical trials and their collaborations with clinicians, scientists and other key clinical research members.
The Role of Context in the Implementation of Healthcare Interventions
Jessica O' Dowd (TCD) is exploring the role of context and how it affects implementation. This project is using a realist methodology in the form of a realist evaluation to explore how context affects mechanisms and outcomes in complex healthcare interventions.

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