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New fellowships will offer nurses infection control research opportunity

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Two nurses have been appointed to a brand new type of research fellowship designed to boost nursing’s input into the complexities of tackling antimicrobial resistance.

The one-year fellowships, devised by researchers at Imperial College London and senior nurses at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, will give participants the chance to gain vital skills and experience within a leading research team.

“Often what nurses lack is the opportunity to really focus on a research career”

Janice Sigsworth

The two successful candidates – Victor Mariano and Vivian Alividza – will have the chance to work alongside experts in infectious diseases, infection prevention and antimicrobial stewardship, as part of the established research programme led by Professor Alison Holmes at Imperial.

Mr Mariano has previously worked as a clinical research nurse in neuro-trauma and emergency care and done clinical work in critical care, going on to complete a Masters in clinical research.

Ms Alividza trained as paediatric nurse and completed a Masters in public health before working in infection prevention and control.

They will have the chance to get involved in several different research streams and projects, and will act as ambassadors for nursing research and antimicrobial resistance research across the trust and university.

The fellowships were the brainchild of trust’s director of nursing Professor Janice Sigsworth and deputy director of nursing Senga Steel, along with Professor Jonathan Weber, director of research at both the trust and the National Institute of Healthcare Research Imperial Biomedical Research Centre – a partnership between the trust and university.

They said they hoped it would address some of the difficulties nurses can encounter when trying to develop a career in research and undertake a PhD.

The fellowships will help participants come up with research questions related to antimicrobial resistance and should help them with applications for doctoral research.

Janice Sigsworth

Janice Sigsworth

Janice Sigsworth

Professor Sigsworth said she hoped the fellowships would help launch nurses on successful research careers.

“Often what nurses lack is the opportunity to really focus on a research career and build solid applications for their doctoral studies,” she said.

“Being exposed to such a successful multi-disciplinary and established research programme led by Professor Holmes will provide invaluable experience and opportunity for the fellows to start their research careers much earlier than has perhaps been possible before,” she said.

Ms Steel said nursing could learn from the medical profession when it came to building and sustaining research career and programmes.

“It’s really amazing that Professor Weber was able to offer funding for our fellows to undertake this rare opportunity to enhance care for our patients through research in such an important area,” she said.

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