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NETSCC runs a number of national research
programmes on behalf of the National Institute for Health Research
(NIHR), the Medical Research Council and the
Department of Health. The programmes are needs-led and
science-added. That means the programmes respond to the
identified needs of a customer – normally the NHS – and ensure
that the highest quality work is commissioned in order to answer
research questions identified by the customer. NETSCC is recognised
as a valuable Public Health resource.
Registrars are eligible for placement at NETSCC after successful completion of the Part B
exam of the Faculty of Public Health.
NETSCC currently runs:
In addition, we have two
internal directorates concerned with cross cutting issues which may
affect more than one of these programmes, and an internal programme
of ‘Research on research’, aimed at learning from our large
portfolio of commissioned research projects(ranging from evidence
synthesis to large clinical trials), in order to both deliver
academic outputs and improve the programmes that we run
The core of a typical
attachment would involve being attached to one of these programmes,
where the registrar would contribute to identifying and
refining research priorities through literature review and
discussion with appropriate experts. In the course of a year’s
attachment, a registrar would be able to see the initial
topics worked on be commissioned as significant pieces of research.
Additional activity would be arranged according to the trainees
needs and interests. Previous registrars have contributed to
setting up new research programmes, done work aimed at minimising
redundancy of clinical trials, worked on European collaboration in
Health Technology Assessment, and published research as part of our
At the end of the
attachment, registrars should have gained an insight into the
process of evidence generation, and the workings of research
The exact learning
outcomes achieved will depend on the work taken while on attachment
with us. The list below is suggestive, not exhaustive.
Registrars are eligible
for placement at NETSCC after successful completion of the Part B
exam of the Faculty of Public Health. They will be addressing
Phase 3 Learning Outcomes in the curriculum. The list in the table
below shows the main ones that may be addressed during the
1.7. Undertake a health needs assessment
for a defined population for a specific purpose and demonstrate
that this work has been considered at a high level in a relevant
2.1. Generate an appropriate question in order to assess the
2.2. Use health and non-health evidence from formal research and
other sources to answer a defined question, taking into account
relative strengths and weaknesses of evidence used.
2.3. Make use of others in finding and retrieving evidence (e.g.
librarians, information specialists).
2.4. Define a literature search strategy with appropriate
inclusion and exclusion criteria to find relevant evidence to
answer a question.
2.5. Clearly document methods used in finding and retrieving
2.6. Filter and refine searches to select appropriate evidence,
incorporating the hierarchy of evidence.
2.7. Use an appropriate framework to critically appraise
2.9. Provide options for decision makers.
2.10. Communicate recommendations orally and in writing in order
to influence decisions.
7.7. Assess an individual funding request using sound legal and
7.14. Lead an exercise in horizon scanning for new technologies
and treatments which informs planning decisions.
8.6. Present and communicate population health intelligence in
effective ways in order to develop local and national policy.
8.9. Make a major contribution to
systematic collecting, collating and interpreting of intelligence
to inform the commissioning of health care and public health
9.2. Formulate a specific public health
9.3. Interpret a meta-analysis.
9.4. Define appropriate outcome measures and data requirements
for specific research proposals, both quantitative and
9.5. Identify the resource implications of varied research
9.9. Identify research needs based on patient/population needs
and in collaboration with relevant partners.
9.10. Work within the principles of good research governance
9.12. Contribute to the education and training of other staff,
medical students and colleagues.
9.17. Advise on the relative strengths and
limitations of different research methods to address a specific
public health research question.
Design, undertake and analyse an original research
9.19. Conduct a systematic review on a
defined research question.
9.20. Present an accepted research paper at a national public
health scientific meeting.
9.21. Prepare and submit a research paper to a reputable peer
NETSCC, Wessex Institute, University of Southampton, Alpha
House, Enterprise Road, Southampton Science Park, Chilworth,
Southampton, SO16 7NS. Tel: +44 (0)23 8059 5586.
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