This months #OTalk Research topic is “ The NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme: a potential opportunity for occupational therapists”. The chat will be host by Chris Lovegrove @CLovegrove_OT Clinical Lead Occupational Therapist (Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital) and Clinical Research Fellow (CRN South West Peninsula) Chris will be tweeting from the ROTTERs Exeter @ROTTERsExeter account for the chat and Dr Jenny Preston MBE @preston_jenny will be on the @OTalk_ account supporting.
The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) recognises that Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) play a vital role in the delivery of high quality, patient-centered clinical research . As a professional group, AHPs represent the third largest workforce in health & social care and includes Occupational Therapy . Research -active AHPs are at the core of the NIHR mission to support outstanding individuals to conduct leading research focused on the needs of patients and the public [1, 3]. With core principles of participation, meaningful occupation, and holism, occupational therapists are ideally positioned to lead in clinically-relevant frontline research.
In collaboration with Health Education England, the NIHR offer the Integrated Clinical Academic (ICA) programme . This multi-level award programme provides personal research training awards for AHPs who wish to develop careers that combine clinical research and research leadership with continued clinical practice and development. The awards range from introductory research internships through to senior clinical lectureships . While the numbers of occupational therapists applying to these schemes are increasing, they remain relatively low compared to other professions .
Whether you are an experienced researcher or clinical academic, clinician, or student, please join us for this #OTalk twitter chat and share your ideas and experiences. Suggested talking points and discussion questions to focus the chat:
- What are your experiences of the NIHR ICA scheme?
- Are you contemplating applying to the scheme?
- How long do you think an application takes?
- What preparation do you think goes into an application?
Host: Chris Lovegrove @CLovegrove_OT
Support on the #OTalk account: @preston_jenny