The EMERGE TERN Fellowship

The realm of clinical research can often seem like a challenging place for junior doctors to engage, establish and thrive. However, the future of Emergency Medicine (EM) research depends on the next generation of clinicians. With this in mind, EMERGE provides the exciting opportunity to local EM trainees (ST4+) to collaborate with the team for a year (on a part-time basis alongside clinical work). In partnership with the experienced research nurses and under supervision and mentorship of Matt Reed, the trainee has the opportunity to lead the local delivery of national trainee-led research projects… which leads us onto TERN

TERN is the Trainee Emergency Research Network. It is a UK-wide collaboration of EM trainees under the auspices of RCEM which provides a robust infrastructure for research engagement. It was set up a few years ago with the aims of improving access to academic opportunities and demystifying clinical research in EM. It is headed up by the national TERN representative (currently Dr Rob Hirst) who is responsible for overall coordination, but regional reps have the opportunity to be Principal Investigators at their respective sites.

Relevant, dynamic, pragmatic and practice-influencing projects are inspired and designed by EM registrars. The focus is on short-term projects, which accommodates for some of the challenges faced by trainees in terms of frequent rotations between sites. The myriad of local representatives in different hospitals throughout the UK enables delivery of large-scale studies over these short periods of time, maximising external validity.

This successful platform has enabled the delivery of the TIRED study, which looked at need for intershift recovery among EM doctors in the UK, and CERA (ongoing), which evaluates the psychological impact of the COVID pandemic on EM and critical care clinicians. Other projects in the pipeline include SHED (external validation of 6 hour CT head strategy for exclusion of a subarachnoid haemorrhage in the ED) and ACS:ED (evaluation of different strategies for investigating suspected cardiac chest pain and the epidemiology of different causes of chest pain across the UK). For more information about these projects check out the TERN website: https://ternresearch.co.uk/

Any Edinburgh-based EM trainees who are enthusiastic about engaging with clinical research in this supported and collaborative setting are strongly encouraged to apply for the EMERGE-TERN fellowship at the next available opportunity! A post commencing in August 2021 will be advertised soon so keep your eyes peeled!

Dr Rachel McLatchie

ST4 EM Registrar

EMERGE-TERN Fellow Aug 2020-Aug 2021