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Transforming Temple Health’s Clinical Research Infrastructure

News October 27, 2014

Say "medical research" to most people and they’ll probably think of a health story they saw on TV or in the newspaper, urging a new caution or touting a new cure. But what the headlines rarely convey is the tremendous amount of coordinated collaboration, logistical legwork, and methodological moxie that are required to produce a successful clinical trial or research project.

Seasoned clinical researchers leverage the experience and partnership networks they have cultivated over the years to bring their study ideas to grant-funded fruition. Younger researchers at the beginning of their learning curve often experience more hurdles and have fewer resources to guide them.

No matter what level of experience they have, all clinical researchers at Temple Health will now benefit from the new Temple Clinical Research Institute (TCRI) – an infrastructure of expertise and resources to enhance and accelerate multidisciplinary clinical research of the highest quality.

"Each step in the clinical research process – from conceptualization of an objective to data collection and patient follow-up through dissemination of study results – needs to be supported by a system that optimizes efficiency, productivity and quality," said Susan Fisher, MS, PhD, Professor and Chair of the Department of Clinical Sciences, Associate Dean of Clinical Research, and Director of TCRI. "We believe TCRI will provide that support."

In the coming months, systems will be put in place and personnel hired who can assist Temple’s busy clinician scientists with identifying funding opportunities, meeting deadlines, filling out requisite paperwork, creating databases, recruiting study volunteers, and more.

Among its many activities, TCRI will help to coordinate research team activities, foster partnerships with clinical research sponsors, optimize regulatory compliance, provide superior bio-statistical expertise and bioinformatics support, and enrich research subject participation through urban health partnerships that improve community health.

In short, the Institute will expand institutional proficiency in all aspects of clinical investigation including ongoing mentorship and education for faculty, residents, and medical students.