Clinical Research Fellow
This role is equally split between the Department of Perinatal Imaging & Health, King’s College London and the Neonatal Unit at Guy’s & St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust.
The candidate will support and enable the imaging of children, infants and fetuses in the Evelina Newborn Imaging Centre (based at St Thomas’s Hospital ) and to support the work of the developing Human Connectome Project (dHCP) and EU-AIMS 2 Trials.
The dHCP clinical study is a flagship €14 million research programme funded by the European Research Council. The dHCP is led by King’s College London in close collaboration with Imperial College London and Oxford University, and aims to map the development of functional and structural connections in the infant human brain before and after birth. The Project will provide the first comprehensive map of the growth of cerebral connections from 20 to 44 weeks after conception, at a stage of the human life course when brain development is rapid and complex, and also vulnerable to disruption by both genetic and environmental factors.
The €115 million grant, titled Autism Innovative Medicine Studies-2-Trials (AIMS-2-Trials), will increase our understanding of autism and help develop new therapies to improve health outcomes and quality of life for autistic people. AIMS-2-TRIALS builds on an initial investment to establish a UK autism research consortium by the Medical Research Council to better understand brain biology, and subsequent funding from the National Institutes of Health Research to identify the health and social needs of autistic people and their families. EU AIMS made significant advances such as understanding how brain development, anatomy and function are related to symptoms of autism. AIMS-2-TRIALS will build on these discoveries by studying people through the lifespan to understand what drives good outcomes for autistic people and their families.
AIMS-2-Trials led by King's College London will create the first European clinical trials network for autism, as well as allowing for an internationally integrated partnership with charities, government agencies and industry to rapidly determine if therapies are effective.
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The role within the Neonatal Unit will be tailored to experience, with more junior members of the team providing direct care to babies in the different areas of the unit (ITU, HDU, SCBU, PNW, labour ward), and more senior members leading resuscitation and stabilisation at birth of the more complex patients and coordinating intensive care.
The Neonatal Unit at Guy’s & St Thomas’ is now the largest in the South Thames Region and one of the largest in the United Kingdom having completed in the recent years an expansion project, with 20 Intensive Care, 12 High Dependency and 20 Special Care beds. There are over 7,000 births per year on-site, the majority of which are from a high risk, inner city local population. There is an academic Obstetrics and Fetal Medicine Department. A substantial number of antenatal referrals and in-utero transfers occur due to a wide range of Maternal Medicine tertiary services, including Diabetes, Lupus, Cardiology and Renal Medicine. Fetal Medicine and Fetal Cardiology services also account for many of these.
There is a close working relationship with subspecialties including the departments of Fetal and Paediatric Cardiology, Paediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery, Paediatric General Surgery, Paediatric Anaesthesia, Paediatric Neurology, Paediatric Nephrology & Urology, Paediatric Metabolic Medicine, Paediatric ENT, Plastic Surgery (including the Regional Cleft Lip & Palate Service), Orthopaedic Surgery and Genetics.
This post will be offered on a fixed-term contract for 12 months
This is a full-time post (40 hours per week in a 50% research / 50% clinical capacity)
- To support and enable the imaging of children, infants and foetuses in the Evelina Newborn Imaging Centre
- To support the work of the dHCP and EU-AIMS Trials programme in studying mothers and their babies before and after delivery.
- To support the academic activity of the Centre for the Developing Brain and the Sackler Institute for Translational Neuroscience.
- Participate in clinical and other activities with the object of ensuring a high standard of patient care within the Evelina Newborn Imaging Centre.
Communication & Networking:
- Communicate with parents and patients to facilitate safe and convenient scanning, and the appropriate communication of results, both normal and abnormal
- Participate in image acquisition and interpretation, working with colleagues to ensure that correct information is communicated, and taking any necessary steps consequent on these results.
- Accept and assume a role as part of an interdisciplinary team.
- Assimilate the language and thinking of other disciplines to facilitate effective collaboration with multidisciplinary teams of physicists and clinicians within the School and as part of collaborations with external institutions and companies.
- Take a role in the development of the Evelina Newborn Imaging Centre through communication and liaison with the staff of the Evelina Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
- Maintain networks within the University and the Trust to develop the necessary academic and clinical links to ensure the effective translation of basic scientific developments into the clinical setting.
- Participate in regular project planning meetings in addition to attending group meetings organised by others.
- Undertake Continuous Professional Development.
- Undertake appropriate professional duties.
Decision Making, Planning and Problem Solving:
- Take appropriate responsibility for parents and patients attending the Evelina Newborn Imaging Centre
- Contribute to collaborative decision making with colleagues within research teams.
- Assist staff compiling regulatory documentation by providing necessary data.
- Develop and disseminate guidelines resulting from problem resolution.
- Plan and act independently to take forward assigned projects and discuss these with the research teams.
- Working independently with only low-level supervision.
- Work closely with the radiographers, research nurses, research midwives and facility managers, undertaking individual assigned responsibilities to ensure the smooth and safe running of the laboratories for all users.
- Support other members of the team.
- Adopt systems of work as required by the Local Rules.
- Maintain record and input data as required by the project.
- Undertake agreed clinical work in the neonatal unit commensurate with fulfilling the research role of the post.
- Ensure that research subjects have been consented correctly for studies and have completed paperwork before participation.
- Adhere to appropriate policies and legislation regarding clinical research e.g. informed consent, International Conference on Harmonisation (ICH) Good Clinical Practice (GCP).
- Maintain full compliance with confidentiality regulations at all times.
Analysis & Research:
- Disseminate scientific results by means of submitting research for publication and presenting orally and in poster form at national and international meetings, so as to contribute to the Faculty’s research record and the further advancement of the discipline/profession.
- Initiate and contribute to the preparation of research proposals and raise own funding through peer-reviewed grant applications.
- Develop and strengthen links with others in the appointee’s area of expertise and with external bodies to promote the research and to assist in funding it.
- Use specialist knowledge to assist other colleagues to answer research questions.
- Undertake image and other analyses as part of the project under appropriate supervision.
- Contribute to the preparation of research proposals
Teaching & Learning Support:
- Understand the importance of team working and learning and participate as a member of the team
- As a member of an interdisciplinary team involving clinicians and physicists within the School and with external collaborators, carry out research in pursuit of the objectives of the Centre for the Developing Brain.
- Assist and advise more junior researchers and students in the planning and execution of their research.
Sensory/Physical Demands & Work Environment:
- Take a leading role in maintaining a safe working environment for a research team involved in all aspects of MR Imaging.
- Work within magnetic fields and in the scanner environment.
- Work with newborn infants, children and pregnant women
- To contribute the support of visiting scientists and postgraduate students.
- To support and be considerate of, other members of the team.
- Provide High Quality Care to Patients
- The post holder must be medically qualified and maintain GMC specialist registration, including revalidation and hold a licence and all regulatory clearances to practice with children.
- To develop and maintain the competencies required to carry out the duties required of the post.
- To ensure patients are involved in decisions about their care and to respond to their views.
Research, Teaching and Training:
- Where possible to collaborate with academic and clinical colleagues to enhance the Trust’s translational research portfolio, at all times meeting the full requirements of Research Governance.
- To work with medical, nursing and managerial colleagues to ensure high performance.
- Participate in clinical audit, incident reporting and analysis.
- To ensure clinical guidelines and protocols are adhered to.
- To keep fully informed about best practice in the speciality areas.
- To role model good practice for infection control to all members of the multidisciplinary team.
- Maintain good patient safety at all times.
- Keep clinical mandatory training up to date in accordance with the Trust requirements.
- Strive to continually develop oneself clinically and keep up to date with the latest clinical practice, as per Trust and KCL requirements.
- Adhere to GSTT and KCL policies and procedures at all times.
- Report any adverse events as per GCP and Trust policies.
Leadership and Team Working:
- To demonstrate excellent leadership skills with regard to individual performance, clinical teams, the Trust and when participating in national or local initiatives.
- To work collaboratively with all members of the multi-disciplinary team and Kings Health Partners as required.
- To resolve conflict and difficult situations through negotiation and discussion, involving appropriate parties.
- Adhere to Trust/departmental guidelines on leave including reporting absence.
- To provide clinical care for inpatients in Intensive Care, Special Care, Labour Ward and Postnatal Ward.
- To work at an appropriate level within a 3 tier junior medical team. To develop knowledge and experience in straightforward and complex neonatal problems, including subspeciality neonatology (particularly in newborn cardiology and surgery).
- To develop counselling skills for antenatal parents, parents of babies on NICU and bereaved parents. To develop skills for discharging planning from SCBU. To develop skills in neonatal resuscitation, ventilation and ultrasound.
Teaching and Education
- To participate in postgraduate medical education.
- To take part in simulation and clinical skills lab training.
- To participate in undergraduate teaching programme for King’s College London medical students.
- To present in weekly programmed postgraduate activities: paediatric grand round, neonatal grand round, neonatal seminars, and journal club.
- To take part in ad-hoc courses on: neonatal cardiology, lung ultrasound, point of care ultrasound.
- To continue professional development in agreement with your educational supervisor by attending relevant training as agreed.
- To be responsible for maintaining full data collection using BadgerNet, with generation of admission and discharge summaries.
Clinical governance & audit
- To be involved in weekly perinatal mortality and morbidity meetings, monthly deaths and complications meetings and adverse incident meetings.
- To contribute to updating of clinical protocols as well as to departmental audits and to undertake an agreed audit project.
- To be involved in recruitment and running of current research studies being carried out on the Neonatal Unit.
Skills, knowledge, and experience
1. MBBS or equivalent primary medical qualification
2. Full UK GMC registration and a licence to practise
3. Specialty qualification in Paediatrics (MRCPCH or equivalent)
4. Demonstrable skills in written and spoken English that are adequate to enable effective communication about medical topics
5. Newborn Life Support training or equivalent
6. Clinical training in paediatrics (including general paediatrics, neonatology, paediatric sub-specialties)
7. Knowledge and experience of caring for sick newborn infants, particularly preterm infants
8. Experience of working in a multi-disciplinary environment
1. Newborn Life Support instructor
2. Clinical training in tertiary level neonatology
3. Previous experience as a middle grade in tertiary neonatal units
4. Evidence of interest and experience in teaching
5. Evidence of academic or research achievements (e.g. degrees, prizes, awards, distinctions, publications, presentation…)
6. Interest in analysis of MR images and data
7. Demonstrates clinical skills of Neurological assessment of Neonates, Infants and Children under 5 years
8. Experience of conducting clinical research with infants and young children
9. Understanding of the concepts and application of clinical governance and of Good Clinical Practice
10. Evidence of clinical governance, audit, management and IT skills required
11. Experience in Neonatal MR imaging and/or image analysis, undertaking scientific research and comprehensive clinical experience in neonatal medicine