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Research and Practice Development at St Columba’s Hospice

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The Hospice’s five year strategy 2015-2020 reflects increased commitment to research and for research to form a larger part of the work undertaken at St Columba’s Hospice.

We recognise the important role of the Hospice, as a centre for excellence, in participating, driving and initiating research to ensure provision of the highest possible quality of palliative and end of life care for patients and their families.

The Hospice’s Centre for Education and Research has developed Research Matters, which is our research strategy and leads on implementing a research framework for the Hospice. Our research strategy is aligned with the Hospice’s five year strategy. Click here to download a copy of our research strategy.

We will collaborate with research teams within Universities and NHS organisations locally, national and internationally.

Our emphasis is on research and projects that will have a direct impact on practice and support further development of palliative care leading to best possible care and quality of life for patients and their families. We focus on five key areas:

  • Clinical interventions in palliative and end of life care – We are currently involved in an intervention trial of a treatment aimed at alleviating cancer associated weight loss.
  • Innovation in palliative care services
  • Psychosocial and emotional care – We are undertaking a project to evaluate and optimise person-centred care within the Hospice.
  • Engagement with the community – We are currently involved in carrying out a review of published literature surrounding community engagement in palliative care.
  • Arts and humanities in palliative and end of life care.

Our current research collaborators are:

Professor Scott Murray, St Columba’s Chair of Primary Palliative Care at the University of Edinburgh and lead of the Primary Palliative Care Research Group 

University of Edinburgh, Scotland 

Professor Marie Fallon, St Columba’s Hospice Chair of Palliative Medicine at the University of Edinburgh and an Honorary Consultant in Palliative Care at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh, Scotland 

Professor Brendan McCormack, Head of the Division of Nursing/Head of QMU Graduate School, Associate Director Centre for Person-centred Practice Research

Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, Scotland

For further information email Dr Erna Haraldsdottir, director of education and research at St Columba’s Hospice.

Our research team and collaborations

Our research team consisting of consultants, doctors, nurses, social scientists and therapists is committed to carrying out palliative care research and disseminating through presenting our work at conferences and in peer reviewed journals.

The research team at St Columba’s Hospice welcomes collaborations with outside organisations and individuals to undertake well designed and appropriate research that is ethically sound and fits with our strategy and aims.

We welcome proposals which are reviewed and considered by our research committee which meets four times per year. If you are interested in collaborating we ask you to begin by giving us some background information by completing our application form electronically and returning to Dr Erna Haraldsdottir. This will allow us to consider your application prior to beginning the formal approval process. You can download the application form here.