Implementation of a clinician and academic researcher-led funding program to stimulate research in a Regional Medical Campus
INTRODUCTION: Fostering locally initiated clinical research, with physicians as lead investigators, can be challenging for a Regional Medical Campus (RMC) or any site involved in distributed medical education (DME). Exposing students to research and to clinically relevant research is an important accreditation criterion. We discuss an initiative implemented to stimulate the development of clinical research activities within the main hospital affiliated with our RMC.
METHODS: The Duo research grant program was launched in March 2018. It offers research grants worth up to 25,000 CAN$. Proposals have to be submitted by two co-principal investigators, including one academic researcher and one clinician involved in medical education through our RMC. Projects need to address a clinical practice or medical education issue.
RESULTS: Twelve projects were submitted in the first two funding rounds of the Duo research grant program. Eight of the twelve proposals received funding (67% success rate) and have already directly exposed medical students and residents to clinical research. They have also led to presentations at conferences and submission of external grant proposals.
CONCLUSIONS: With a cost of 100,000 CAN$ per year, the Duo research grant program appears to be an effective strategy for fostering meaningful collaborations between clinicians and researchers, for exposing our medical students to more clinical research, and for favouring the development of our clinicians’ academic profiles.
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