Prospective students of clinical research training may envision themselves working away in a quiet laboratory, but that is not the only kind of environment that these kinds of pharmaceutical courses can prepare you for. Graduates of pharmaceutical quality control are also needed to provide a research presence in the hospital emergency room (ER).
Why ensure a research presence in hospital emergency rooms?
Emergency rooms offer a unique opportunity for graduates of clinical research training, in that a wide variety of patients with a wide variety or problems pass through them. Some research hospitals have a practice of keeping graduates of pharmaceutical courses on hand in the ER to recruit subjects for clinical trials. They help identify eligible patients and enroll them in pertinent studies.
What does ensuring a research presence in an ER entail?
Graduates of clinical research training who pursue this career path will be responsible for assessing emergency room patients for eligibility for certain clinical trials. On any given day, they might be the lookout for subjects to participate in as few as one or two or as many as ten or more clinical trials.
As they will have learned in their pharmaceutical courses, these graduates will ask emergency room patients questions to ascertain their eligibility for trials. They will also have to proceed with tact, and in keeping with all relevant laws and regulations. One of the main topics of pharmaceutical quality control training is the importance of obtaining informed consent from human subjects.
Pharmaceutical quality control students who are interested in pursuing this kind of work should ask themselves the following questions:
- Do they have good people skills? - Graduates of clinical research training who go on to ensure a research presence in ERs will need to interact with busy medical staff and stressed-out patients and their families.
- Do they have an eye for detail? - This kind of work is highly regulated. Enlisting human subjects to participate in pharmaceutical trials requires adhering to a strict protocol. Do you think that you have what it takes to balance ethical and scientific considerations, especially in such a fast paced environment as a hospital emergency room?
- Do you have compassion, but clear boundaries? - In the emergency room, you will be exposed to human suffering, but must not get caught up on it, or let it distract you from your work.
Although clinical research training may seem at first glance to prepare students for a life of quiet work in a sterile laboratory, it can actually prepare researchers for work in a variety of environments, including a busy, vibrant hospital ER. Graduates of pharmaceutical courses are needed in the field to screen and recruit patients for clinical studies. It is rewarding, but highly demanding work, best suited to researchers with highly developed people skills.