Academic post location: University of Notre Dame
Background? I hadn’t had the opportunity to do academic or research work previously, I was whisked away into the workforce!
In general practice you get more time to reflect, and I thought that I was lacking in research experience, and there were areas I was interested in.
I also really liked my time at University.
Research? The Health Promotion (HELP) study, it’s a study to help understand patient health literacy and awareness through examining the effectiveness of health promotion in the GP waiting room.
Why? There are no real guidelines to assist practices in ways to promote health. There is a myriad of things available – it’s information overload – and we’ve never asked patients what they want.
Benefits? There are so many benefits to doing an academic post. I work closely with patients so I see another perspective to the doctor patient relationship.
To be the best doctor I can, I need to be up-to-date with the latest information and need to be able to critically appraise that information. And learning critical thinking and being able to apply that to my practice and how to change my actions accordingly, for example in prescribing medications.
There isn’t much primary health research compared to other specialities. Maybe GPs are more time poor, so it’s good to foster a culture that research is important.
Recommendation? When I went to the workshop before applying, one of the supervisors said it was amazing an amazing opportunity to get funding and support – the real world of research doesn’t work that way. This is like a scholarship, so if you’re interested, why wouldn’t you?
It’s great to experience other things rather than clinical work and until you experience research you don’t really know what you’re capable of and what you can do.
If you want to know more head to our academic research page.