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Students have been working with Cambridge Clinical Informatics

23 Jun 2016
A group of 28 Hills Road students recently took part in a six week project with Cambridge Clinical Informatics (CCI) part of the Department of Medicine, University of Cambridge.

The students were taught about the Consent for Contact project. This project looks at how patients of Addenbrooke’s and Rosie Hospitals could be asked to voluntarily join a research registry with their contact details and basic health and demographic details (not their full medical record), as necessary for selection of people who are likely to be able to join a given study.

Approved researchers affiliated with the University of Cambridge, or Addenbrooke’s or Rosie Hospitals could then contact patients on the research registry and invite them to join current or future research studies that they are eligible for.

The students were then taught about qualitative research, and how to gather data with recorded focus groups and semi-structured interview. They then used the focus groups (for their peers) and interviews (for their parents/guardians) to gather suggestions and opinions on the best ways to implement the Consent for Contact project.

The work that the students carried out as part of this project will prove invaluable to them for when they go on to related work placements or if they go on to study medicine or science at university. At the end of the project the students presented their findings and attended a dinner and awards ceremony with their parents at the University of Cambridge Graduate Centre, Mill Lane. Certificates were presented to all the students.

The results of the data that were collected by the students will help to develop a protocol which the CCI team hope to trial at Addenbrooke’s Hospital and the Rosie Maternity Unit.

One student, Heather Tong has gone on to volunteer to be part of the project advisory group for the CCI’s Consent for Contact Project, and has recently attended and contributed to the first meeting.

Hills Road Biology teacher and co-ordinator Ginny Hales said, “This was a really interesting project for the students, and allowed them to see how clinical informatics research projects are carried out, and to take part in each step of the process.”