UCD Centre for Interdisciplinary Research, Education and Innovation in Health Systems (UCD IRIS Centre)

Our work is characterised by systems thinking, interdisciplinary and intersectoral working, patient and public involvement and robust evidence synthesis, informing the collaborative design of health systems interventions and professional development programmes, as well as contributing to methodological innovation and strong networks and partnerships.

Thinking Systems  -  Improving Health  -  Inspiring Change Our Research Galleries are open to view presentations and videos on three themes: Quality & Outcomes, Equity & Access, Organisation & Culture.

UCD IRIS Research Projects
  1. Expanding Care Capacity through Remote Monitoring of COVID-19 patients 15-Aug-20 to 14-Mar-21
  2. Tender: Mental Health Programme Workplace Mental Health 14-Jul-2020 to 4-Dec-2020
  3. CUPID Covid-19: paediatric emergency department attendance during COVID-19 11-May-20 to 10-May-2021
  4. International partnership building and research prioritisation for Gender Based Violence (Learn2EndGBV) 1-May-2020 to 31-Dec-2021
  5. My Voice: Engaging Young People with Intellectual Disabilities in Research (My Voice) 1-May-2020 to 31-Dec-2021
  6. Exploring inclusive leadership in trauma teams (EXPLICIT) 1-May-2020 to 31-Dec-2021
  7. Advanced social network methods to explore factors that influence network formation in interdisciplinary settings (CONNECT) 1-Apr-20 to 30-Mar-22
  8. Innovative application of design thinking with homeless populations 1-Apr-20 to 30-Mar-22
  9. Voluntary Healthcare Forum - Services 1 Dec-19 to 30-Nov-20
  10. Identification of public health priorities for children born into and living in homelessness accommodation 1-Apr-19 to 30-Mar-21 
  11. Exploring the ‘readiness to change’ among men and women to inform the co- design of targeted anti-female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) interventions in Kenya. 01-Oct-19 to 30-Sep-21
  12. Embedding collective leadership to foster collaborative inter-professional working in the care of older people (Eclectic) 02-Sep-19 to 01-Mar-21
  13. Access to primary and emergency care for children with intellectual disabilities: utilisation, decision making, parental preferences and disparities 31-Jul-19 to 30-Jul-22
  14. TeamTalk: Interactive Resource Hub for Healthcare Teams. 01-Dec-18 to 30-Nov-19
  15. Collective Leadership in Healthcare: Development, Implementation & Evaluation Network 21-Se-18 to 20-Jun-19
  16. Patient Voice: Participatory action research to support the self management of rheumatoid arthritis 01-Feb-18 to 30-May-2020 
  17. Adapting, developing and validating instruments to measure the key elements of quality and patient safety at the individual, team and organizational level in Ireland. 01-Jan-18 to 31-Dec-2020
  18. Promoting Assisted Decision Making in Acute Care Settings (PADMACS) for Care Planning Purposes 01-Dec-17 to 31-Jul-20 
  19. Speaking up About Safety (SUAS). 01-Dec-17 to 31-Jul-18
  20. The development of a PlayDecide game as a new methodology for exploring psychological safety within healthcare teams 01-Oct-2017 to 30-Sep-21
  21. Children’s unscheduled primary and emergency care in Ireland: decision making, trends, outcomes and parental perspectives (CUPID) 01-Sep-18 to 31-Aug-21
  22. PPI Ignite Award – University College Dublin 13-Nov-17 to 12-Nov-20
  23. Comparative Policy Analysis: Problems, Agendas and Policies in Brazil, France, Scotland, Ireland, Portugal and Spain 01-Jul-17 to 31-Dec-17 
  24. The Development of a Partnership between UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems and Meru University of Science and Technology, School of Nursing, Meru, Kenya 09-Jan-17 to 08-Jan-18
  25. Identifying the optimum role and function of an Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB) outreach nurse 01-Jan-17 to 30-Sep-18
  26. SAFE: Systematic Approach to improving care for Frail Older patients 07-Nov-16 to 06-Nov-18
  27. Access to Prostheses and Orthoses in Cambodia: what works for whom and why? 01-Apr-16 to 30-Sept-17
  28. Nursing and Midwifery Quality Care Metrics Project 01-Oct-16 to 31-Dec-17
  29. Leadership Intervention-Co-Lead 01-Dec-15 to 30-Nov-20
  30. Collective Leadership and Safety Cultures (CO-LEAD) 01-Dec-15 to 31-May-23
  31. Imbuing Medical Professionalism (IMP)15-Dec-14 to 31-Mar-19
  32. Research Emergency Department - Adult Clinical Escalation  (RED-ACE) 01-Dec-14 to 28-Feb-17
  33. HRB-TMRN (Trials Methodology Research Network) 23-Mar-15 to 30-Sep-17
UCD IRIS PhD Projects
  • Zuneera Khurshid PhD topic: Assessing the effectiveness and sustainability of Measurement for Improvement curriculum and training intervention at micro, meso and macro levels in health care staff.
  • Sara Dada PhD topic: Community Health Workers Delivering Maternal Health: A Realist Evaluation of a Community Engagement Framework.
  • Praveen Kumar PhD Topic: A realist evaluation of a national nutrition programme that aimed to improve maternal and child health nutrition service delivery in Assam, India.
  • Carolyn Donohoe PhD topic: Leadership and Strategy Development. 
  • Elizabeth O’Brien PhD topic: Understanding the implementation of Individual Placement and Support Fidelity review recommendations: A Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research Study in Ireland. 
  • Matthew Douma PhD topic: Proposal for Organizational Innovation: Alberta Surviving Cardiac Arrest Campagin.
  • Ms. Roubina Karhily PhD topic: Public Perceptions about Primary Healthcare Centres in Lebanon. 
  • Saydeh Dableh PhD topic: Access of Elderly to Primary Healthcare Services in North of Lebonan.
  • Sophie Mulcahy-Symmons PhD topic: Cervical CancerPromotion.


UCD IRIS Education

For details on educational programmes provided by UCD IRIS members, please follow this link.

UCD IRIS Publications


  1. McDonnell T, Nicholson E, Bury G, Collins C, Conlon C, Denny K, O'Callaghan M, McAuliffe E. Policy of free GP care for children under 6 years: The impact on daytime and out-of-hours general practice. Social Science & Medicine. 2022 Feb 9:114792. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277953622000983 
  2. Teeling, S.P., Dewing, J., Baldie, D. (2022) ‘Developing New Methods for Person-Centred Approaches to Adjudicate Context–Mechanism–Outcome Configurations in Realist Evaluation’, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(4), 2370, available: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19042370
  3. Ward, M.E., Daly, A., McNamara, M., Garvey, S., Teeling, S.P. (2022) ‘A Case Study of a Whole System Approach to Improvement in an Acute Hospital Setting’, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(3), 1246, available: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19031246
  4. Moffatt, S., Garry, C., McCann, H., Teeling, S.P., Ward, M., McNamara, M. (2022) ‘The Use of Lean Six Sigma Methodology in the Reduction of Patient Length of Stay Following Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction Surgery’, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(3), 1588, available: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19031588


  1. Anjara, S., Fox, R., Rogers, L., De Brún, A., & McAuliffe, E. (2021). Teamworking in Healthcare during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Mixed-Method Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18(19) 10371. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph181910371  
  2. Azar M, Azar N, Kroll T, Bradbury-Jones C (2021). Should I seek help for sexual difficulties? Middle-aged Lebanese Women’s Views. Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy (accepted).
  3. Azar M, Bradbury-Jones C. & Kroll T (2021). Middle-aged Lebanese women’s interpretation of sexual difficulties: a qualitative inquiry. BMC Women's Health 21, 203 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12905-020-01132-0
  4. Coleman E, O'Sullivan L, Crowley R, Hanbidge M, Driver S, Kroll T, Kelly A, Nichol A, McCarthy O, Sukumar P, Doran P (2021). Preparing accessible and understandable clinical research participant information leaflets and consent forms: a set of guidelines from an expert consensus conference. Research Involvement and Engagement 18;7(1):31. doi: 10.1186/s40900-021-00265-2. PMID: 34006326; PMCID: PMC8130271.
  5. Conlon, C., McDonnell, T., Barrett, M. et al. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on child health and the provision of Care in Paediatric Emergency Departments: a qualitative study of frontline emergency care staff. BMC Health Serv Res 21, 279 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-021-06284-9
  6. Conlon, C., Nicholson, E., McDonnell, T., De Brún, A. & McAuliffe, E. (2021). “Stuff you think you can handle as a parent and stuff you can’t”. Understanding parental healthcare seeking behaviour: A qualitative study. Health Expectations, https://doi.org/10.1111/hex
  7. Connolly, F., De Brún, A. & McAuliffe, E. (2021). A narrative synthesis of learner’s experiences of barriers and facilitators to effective interprofessional simulation. Journal of Interprofessional Care. https://doi.org/10.1080/13561820.2021.1880381
  8. Cook, N., McConnell, D., Teeling S.P. (2021) 'Multiple and Mixed Methods Research' In: Dewing, J., McCormack, B., McCance, T. (eds) Person-centred Nursing Research:Methodology, Methods and Outcomes Springer, Switzerland. 
  9. Corey J, Vallières F, Frawley T, De Brún A, Davidson S, Gilmore B. (2021) A Rapid Realist Review of Group Psychological First Aid for Humanitarian Workers and Volunteers. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 Feb 4;18(4):1452. doi: 10.3390/ijerph18041452. PMID: 33557186. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33557186/
  10. Cunningham K, Kroll T, & Wells M (2021). First steps in identifying and addressing loneliness in the context of COVID-19. Perspectives in Public Health. https://doi.org/10.1177/1757913920975793
  11. Cunningham, U., De Brún, A., Willgerodt, M., Blakeney, E., & McAuliffe, E. (2021). Team interventions in acute hospital contexts: protocol for the evaluation of an initial programme theory using realist methods. HRB Open Research, 4(32), 32. https://doi.org/10.12688/hrbopenres.13225.1
  12. Dableh S, Frazer K and Kroll T (2021). Access of older people to primary healthcare services in low- and middle-income countries: a systematic scoping review protocol [version 1; peer review: awaiting peer review]. HRB Open Research, 4:57 (https://doi.org/10.12688/hrbopenres.13271.1)
  13. Dada S, Ashworth HC, Bewa MJ, et al (2021) Words matter: political and gender analysis of speeches made by heads of government during the COVID-19 pandemic. BMJ Global Health 2021; 6:e003910. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjgh-2020-003910
  14. Dada S, Tuncalp O, Portela A, Barreix M, Gilmore B. (2021) Community mobilization to strengthen community support for appropriate and timely use of antenatal and postnatal care: A review of reviews. Journal of Global Health, [in press].
  15. Daly, A., Teeling, S.P., Ward, M., McNamara, M., and Robinson, C., 2021. The Use of Lean Six Sigma for Improving Availability of and Access to Emergency Department Data to Facilitate Patient Flow. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, [online] 18(21), p.11030. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182111030.
  16. Daly, A., Wolfe, N., Teeling, S.P., Ward, M. and McNamara, M., 2021. Redesigning the Process for Scheduling Elective Orthopaedic Surgery: A Combined Lean Six Sigma and Person-Centred Approach. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, [online] 18(22), p.11946. Available at: <http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182211946>.
  17. De Brún, A. & McAuliffe, E. (2021). The RELATE model: Engaging with healthcare organisations to create the amenable contexts critical for implementation. Journal of Health Organisation and Management, https://doi.org/10.1108/JHOM-08-2020-0335. 
  18. De Brún, A., Rogers, L., Drury, A., & Gilmore, B. (2021). Evaluation of a formative peer assessment in research methods teaching using an online platform: A mixed methods pre-post study. Nurse Education Today, accepted.
  19. Dempsey, A., Robinson, C., Moffatt, N., Hennessy, T., Bradshaw, A., Teeling, S.P., Ward, M., McNamara, M. (2021) Lean Six Sigma Redesign of a Process for Healthcare Mandatory Education in Basic Life Support—A Pilot Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health  18, 11653. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182111653
  20. Donegan, D., Teeling, S.P., McNamara, M., McAweeney, E., McGrory, l., Mooney, R. (2021) 'Calling time on the 'dance of the blind reflex': how collaborative working reduced older persons' length of stay in acute care and increased home discharge, International Practice Development Journal, 11 (1).  https://doi.org/10.19043/ipdj.111.004
  21. Donnelly S, Ó Coimín D, O’Donnell D, Ní Shé É, Davies C, Christophers L, McDonald S & Kroll T (2021) Assisted decision-making and interprofessional collaboration in the care of older people: a qualitative study exploring perceptions of barriers and facilitators in the acute hospital setting, Journal of Interprofessional Care, DOI: 10.1080/13561820.2020.1863342
  22. Donnelly S, Wilson AG, Mannan H, Dix C, Whitehill L, Kroll T (2021) (In)Visible illness: A photovoice study of the lived experience of self- managing rheumatoid arthritis. PLoS ONE 16(3): e0248151. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal. pone.0248151
  23. Donnelly S, Wilson AG, Mannan H, Dix C, Whitehill L, Kroll T (2021) (In)Visible illness: A photovoice study of the lived experience of self-managing rheumatoid arthritis. PLoS ONE 16(3): e0248151. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0248151
  24. Donohue C, Frazer K, Kroll T. 'Strategy-as-practice' by hospital personnel in hospitals: a scoping review protocol. HRB Open Res 2021 https://hrbopenresearch.org/articles/4-26 (under review).
  25. Douma MJ, Ali S, Bone A, Dainty KN, Dennett L, Smith KE, Frazer K, Kroll T (2021). The Needs of Families During Cardiac Arrest Care: A Survivor- and Family-Led Scoping Review Protocol. Journal of Emergency Nursing https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jen.2021.02.006
  26. Egan, P., Pierce, A., Flynn, A., Teeling, S.P., Ward, M. and McNamara, M., 2021. Releasing Operating Room Nursing Time to Care through the Reduction of Surgical Case Preparation Time: A Lean Six Sigma Pilot Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, [online] 18(22), p.12098. Available at: <http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182212098>.
  27. Escorpizo R, Kroll T (2021). Specialty Grand Challenge: Disability, Rehabilitation and Inclusion. Frontiers in Rehabilitation Sciences, doi: 10.3389/fresc.2020.622575
  28. Flood, M., Ennis, M., Sweeney, F., Ludlow, A., Holton, A., Morgan, S., Clark, C., Carroll, P., Mellon, L., Boland, F., Mohamed, S., De Brún, A., Hanratty, M. & Moriarty, F. (2021). Research methods from human-centered design: Potential applications in pharmacy and health services research. Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy, doi: 10.1016/j.sapharm.2021.06.015
  29. Fox, R., Hyland, P., Coogan, A. N., Cloitre, M., & McHugh Power, J. (2021). Posttraumatic stress disorder, complex PTSD and subtypes of loneliness among older adults. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 1–2 https://doi.org/10.1002/jclp.23225
  30. Fox, R., Mulcahy Symmons, S., De Brún, A., Joyce, D., Muldoon, E. G., McGinty, T., O’Reilly, K., O’Connor, E., & McAuliffe, E. (2021) A mixed methods protocol to examine the acceptability and clinical characteristics of a remote monitoring programme for delivery of COVID-19 care, among healthcare staff and patients. BMJ Open, accepted.
  31. Giltenane M, Sheridan A, Kroll T, & Frazer K (2021). Identification of quality indicators of public health nursing practice: “modified Delphi” approach. Public Health Nursing, 1– 15. https://doi.org/10.1111/phn.13000
  32. Giltenane M, Sheridan A, Kroll T, Frazer K (2021). Identifying the role of public health nurses during first postnatal visits: Experiences of mothers and public health nurses in Ireland. International Journal of Nursing Studies Advances,3,https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijnsa.2020.100017
  33. Gorchs-Font N, Ramon-Aribau A, Yildirim M, Kroll T, Larkin PJ, Subirana-Casacuberta M (2021). Nursing students' first experience of death: Identifying mechanisms for practice learning. A realist review, Nurse Education Today, 96, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2020.104637
  34. Hartnett l, McNamara M (2021) COVID-19: intellectual disability nurses and the role of networking during a pandemic. Learning Disability Practice. DOI: 10.7748/ldp.2021.e2154
  35. Hartnett L, McNamara M (2021) Oral health and supporting people with intellectual disabilities to get access to dental treatment. Learning Disability Practice. doi: 10.7748/ldp.2021.e2123
  36. Higgins A, Murphy R, Downes C, Barry J, Monahan M, Hevey D, Kroll T, Doyle L, Gibbons P. Factors impacting the implementation of a psychoeducation intervention within the mental health system: a multisite study using the consolidation framework for implementation research. BMC Health Serv Res 2020, 9;20(1):1023. doi: 10.1186/s12913-020-05852-9. PMID: 33168003; PMCID: PMC7654573.
  37. Howe R, Nicholson S, Lafferty A, Davies C, Stokes D, Kroll T (2020). Animal assisted activities in the children's hospital: protocol for a scoping review [version 1; peer review: 1 approved, 1 approved with reservations]. HRB Open Res 2020, 3:74 (https://doi.org/10.12688/hrbopenres.13143.1)
  38. Hyland, P., Rochford, S., Munnelly, A., Dodd, P., Fox, R., Vallières, F., McBride, O., Shevlin, M., Bentall, R. P., Butter, S., Karatzias, T., & Murphy, J. (2021). Predicting risk along the suicidality continuum: A longitudinal, nationally representative study of the Irish population during the COVID-19 pandemic. Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior. https://doi.org/10.1111/sltb.12783
  39. Kearns S, Kroll T, O'Shea D, Neff K (2021). Experiences of transgender and non-binary youth accessing gender-affirming care: A systematic review and meta-ethnography. PLoS One, 16(9):e0257194. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0257194. PMID: 34506559; PMCID: PMC8432766.
  40. Khurshid, Z., De Brún, A., Martin, J. & McAuliffe, E. (2021). A Systematic Review and Narrative Synthesis Determinants of the Effectiveness and Sustainability of Measurement-Focused Quality Improvement Trainings. Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions, doi: 10.1097/CEH.0000000000000331.
  41. Kodate N, Donnelly S, Suwa S, Tsujimura M, Kitinoja H, Hallila J, Toivonen M, Ide H, Yu W (2021) Home-care robots – Attitudes and perceptions among older people, carers and care professionals in Ireland: A questionnaire study. Health and Social Care in the Community. https://doi.org/10.1111/hsc.13327
  42. Kodate N, Taneda K, Yumoto A, Sugiyama Y (2021) The role of incident reporting systems for improving patient safety in Japanese hospitals: a comparative perspective. In: S. Brucksch & K. Sasaki (Eds.) Human and Machines in Medical Context: Case Studies from Japan. Singapore: Palgrave Macmillan. 167-196.
  43. Lafferty A, Phillips D, Dowling-Hetherington L, Fahy M, Moloney B, Duffy C, Paul G, Fealy G, Kroll T (2021). Colliding Worlds: Family Carers’ Experiences of Balancing Work and Care in Ireland during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Health and Social Care in the Community doi: 10.1111/hsc.13365.
  44. Mairéad Fin, Brynne Gilmore, Greg Sheaf & Frédérique Vallières (2021) What do we mean by individual capacity strengthening for primary health care in low- and middle-income countries? A systematic scoping review to improve conceptual clarity. Human Resources for Health volume 19, Article number: 5 https://human-resources-health.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12960-020-00547-y#Ack1
  45. Maxwell R, O'Brien M, O'Donnell D, Christophers L Kroll T (2021). Using a multi-disciplinary approach to reveal decision-making capacity within acute care for an individual with aphasia. SAGE Open Medical Case Reports (accepted).
  46. Maxwell, R., O’Brien, M., O’Donnell, D., Christophers, L., & Kroll, T. (2021). Using a multidisciplinary approach to reveal decision-making capacity within acute care for an individual with aphasia. SAGE Open Medical Case Reports. https://doi.org/10.1177/2050313X211027098
  47. McAneney, H., Shier, H., Gibbs, L., Davies, C., De Brún, A., et al. (2021). Children as innovators: harnessing the creative expertise of children to address practical and psychosocial challenges of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic – COVISION study protocol. HRB Open Research, 4, 104. Doi: 10.12688/hrbopenres.13290.1
  48. McDonnell, T., McAuliffe, E., Nicholson, E., Barrett, M., Bury, G., Collins, C., Cummins, F., Deasy, C., De Brún, A., Denny, K., Hensey, C. (2021). Policy of free GP care for children under 6 years: the impact on Emergency Department attendance, Social Science & Medicine, 279, 113988. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2021.113988
  49. McNamara, M. & Teeling, S.P. (2021) 'Introducing healthcare professionals to systems thinking through an integrated curriculum for leading in health systems', Journal of nursing management. https://doi-org.ucd.idm.oclc.org/10.1111/jonm.13342
  50. McVeigh, J.; MacLachlan, M.; Ferri, D.; Mannan, H. Strengthening the Participation of Organisations of Persons with Disabilities in the Decision-Making of National Government and the United Nations: Further Analyses of the International Disability Alliance Global Survey. Disabilities 2021, 1, 202-217. https://doi.org/10.3390/disabilities1030016
  51. Mulcahy Symmons, S. Fox, R., Mannion, M., Joyce, D., De Brún, A., Glynn, L., Ryan, D., Keane, N., & McAuliffe, E. (2021). A mixed methods protocol to evaluate the effectiveness and acceptability of COVID-19 Community Assessment Hubs. HRB Open, 4:16, https://doi.org/10.12688/hrbopenres.13217.1
  52. Murray RM, Conroy E, Connolly M, Stokes D, Frazer K, Kroll T (2021). Scoping Review: Suicide Specific Intervention Programmes for People Experiencing Homelessness. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.18(13):6729. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18136729
  53. Mwendwa P, Githui S, Marete E & Kroll T (2021). COVID-19 and vaccines in Africa: a descriptive and thematic analysis of Twitter content [version 1; peer review: awaiting peer review]. HRB Open Resesarch, 4:43 (https://doi.org/10.12688/hrbopenres.13255.1)
  54. Mwendwa P, Karani C, Kamolo E et al. What contextual factors and mechanisms facilitate male involvement in women's sexual and reproductive health in Sub-Saharan Africa? A rapid realist review protocol [version 2; peer review: 2 approved]. HRB Open Res 2021, 3:55 (https://doi.org/10.12688/hrbopenres.13113.2)
  55. Mwendwa P, Mutunga E, Kroll T, De Brún A (2021). ‘It is stressful, almost every hour…’: Experiences of caring for people living with dementia in Kenya—An interpretive phenomenological approach. Dementia. May 2021. doi:10.1177/14713012211022989
  56. Mwendwa, P., Mutunga, E., Kroll, T. & De Brún, A. (2021). “It is stressful, almost every hour” Experiences of caring for people living with dementia in Kenya: An interpretive phenomenological approach. Dementia: the international journal of social research and practice, https://doi.org/10.1177/14713012211022989  
  57. O’Donovan, R., De Brún, A., & McAuliffe, E. (2021). Healthcare Professionals Experience of Psychological Safety, Voice and Silence. Frontiers in Psychology, 12(383), https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.626689
  58. O’Donovan, R., Rogers, L., Khurshid, Z., De Brún, A., Nicholson, E., O’Shea, M., Ward, M. & McAuliffe, E. (2021). A systematic review exploring the impact of focal leader behaviours on health care team performance. Journal of Nursing Management, 29(6):1420-1443. doi: 10.1111/jonm.13403
  59. Obayashi K, Kodate N, Kondo H, Okamoto Y, Ishii Y, Nonoda T, Masuyama S (2021) The COVID-19 pandemic and organizational resilience as an unanticipated outcome of introducing socially assistive robots in nursing homes. Geriatrics and Gerontology International, 21(8):752-754.
  60. Obayashi, K., Kodate, N. & Masuyama, S (2021) Assessing the Impact of an Original Soft Communicative Robot in a Nursing Home in Japan: Will Softness or Conversations Bring more Smiles to Older People?. Int J of Soc Robotics. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12369-021-00815-4
  61. O'Donovan, R., Buckley, C., Crowley, P., Fulham-McQuillan, H., Gilmore, B., Martin, J., ... & De Brún, A. (2021). Contact tracing during the COVID-19 outbreak: a protocol for enabling rapid learning from experiences and exploring the psychological impact on contact tracers. HRB Open Research, 4(33), 33. https://doi.org/10.12688/hrbopenres.13236.1
  62. O’Mahony, L., McCarthy, K., O’Donoghue, J., Teeling, S.P., Ward, M. and McNamara, M., 2021. Using Lean Six Sigma to Redesign the Supply Chain to the Operating Room Department of a Private Hospital to Reduce Associated Costs and Release Nursing Time to Care. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, [online] 18(21), p.11011. http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182111011.
  63. Rogers L., De Brún A., Birken S. A., Davies C. & McAuliffe E. (2021) Context counts; a qualitative study exploring the interplay between context and implementation. Journal of Health Organisation and Management. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/JHOM-07-2020-0296. 
  64. Rohan, S., De Brún, A., Galligan, M. & McAuliffe, E. (2021). Key performance indicators that are used to establish concurrent validity while measuring team performance in hospital settings – A systematic review. Computer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine Update, accepted 
  65. Sarah Donnelly, Diarmuid Ó Coimín, Deirdre O’Donnell, Éidín Ní Shé, Carmel Davies, Lauren Christophers, Steve Mc Donald & Thilo Kroll (2021): Assisted decision-making and interprofessional collaboration in the care of older people: a qualitative study exploring perceptions of barriers and facilitators in the acute hospital setting, Journal of Interprofessional Care, DOI: 10.1080/13561820.2020.1863342
  66. Somanadhan S, Bristow H, Crushell E, et al (2021).  IMPACT study: measuring the impact of caregiving on families and healthcare professionals of children and adults living with mucopolysaccharidoses in Ireland. Therapeutic Advances in Rare Disease. January 2021. doi:10.1177/26330040211020764
  67. Spencer, J., Gilmore, B., Lodenstein, E. and Portela, A., 2021. A mapping and synthesis of tools for stakeholder and community engagement in quality improvement initiatives for reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health. Health Expectations.
  68. Teeling, S. P., Dewing, J., & Baldie, D. (2021). A Realist Inquiry to Identify the Contribution of Lean Six Sigma to Person-Centred Care and Cultures. International journal of environmental research and public health, 18(19), 10427. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph181910427
  69. Teeling, S.P., Davies, C., Barnard, M., O’Connor, L., Coffey, A., Lambert, V., McNamara, M., Tuohy, D., Frawley, T., Redmond, C., Somanadhan, S., Casey, M., Corcoran, Y., Doody, O., O’Brien, D., Noonan, M., Smith, R., Bradshaw, C., Murphy, S., Dore, L., Lyons, R., McGeehan, M. and Gallen, A., 2021. A Rapid Realist Review of Quality Care Process Metrics Implementation in Nursing and Midwifery Practice. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, [online] 18(22), p.11932. Available at: <http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182211932>.
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  26. Kazanga, I., Munthali, A.C., McVeigh, J., Mannan, H., & MacLachlan, M. (2019). Predictors of utilisation of skilled maternal healthcare in Lilongwe district, Malawi. International journal of health policy and management, 8(12), 700. 6.      
  27. Kearney, S., Donoghoe, A., McAuliffe, E. (2019). Living with Epidermolysis Bullosa: daily challenges and healthcare needs. Health Expectations.
  28. Kodate, N., & Wilson, E. (2019). Health care policy in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. In K. Kaneko, & N. Kodate (Eds.), Japanese Handbook of Social Welfare, Vol. 1. Tokyo: Junposha.
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  30. Lafferty, A., Phillips, D., Paul, G., Fealy, G., Fahy, M., Dowling-Hetherington, L., . . . Kroll, T. (2019). Stage 1 Registered Report: A scoping review protocol to map the evidence on family carers who combine work with care. doi:10.12688/hrbopenres.12905.1
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  35. MacLachlan, M., McVeigh, J.,Huss, T., & Mannan, H. (2019). Macropsychology: Challenging and Changing Social Structures and Systems to Promote Social Inclusion. The SAGE Handbook of Applied Social Psychology, 166.
  36. McDonnell, T., & Doyle, O. (2019). Maternal employment and childcare during infancy and childhood overweight. Social Science & Medicine, 243, 112639.
  37. McGrath K, Casserly M, O'Mara F, Muslow J, Shields C, Staunton O, Ward M, Teeling SP.(2019)  Zap it track it: the application of Lean Six Sigma methods to improve the screening system of low-grade mucinous neoplasms of the appendix in an acute hospital setting International Journal for Quality in Healthcare 31(Supplement_1):35-44
  38. McNamara M, Teeling SP, Shannon M (2019). Integrative Nursing in Ireland In: Integrative Nursing. Editors: Kreitzer, Mary Jo, Koithan, Mary. 633-642. Weil Integrative Medicine Libr, United States of America
  39. McNamara M, Teeling SP. Developing a university-accredited Lean Six Sigma curriculum to overcome system blindness. International Journal for Quality in Healthcare : 31(Supplement_1):3-5
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  41. Mwendwa, P., Mutea, N., Kaimuri Kaura, M., De Brún, A., & Kroll, T. (2019). “Promote locally lead initiatives to fight female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C)”: Lessons from anti-FGM advocates in rural Kenya. BMC Reproductive Health, 17(1):30. doi: 10.1186/s12978-020-0884-5.
  42. Ní Shé É, Ethics in participatory research for health and well-being: cases and commentaries, Community Development Journal, 2019, bsz010,
  43. Ní Shé É, Morton S, Lambert V, et al. Clarifying the mechanisms and resources that enable the reciprocal involvement of seldom heard groups in health and social care research: A collaborative rapid realist review process. Health Expect. 2019;22(3):298–306. https://doi.org/10.1111/hex.12865
  44. Nicholson, E., McDonnell, T., Hamza, M., Barrett, M., Brunsdon, C., Bury, G., Charlton, M., Collins, C., Deasy, C., De Brún, A., Fitzsimons, J., Galligan, M., Hensey, C., Kiernan, F. & McAuliffe, E. (2019). Factors that influence family and parental preferences and decision making for unscheduled paediatric healthcare: a systematic review protocol. HRB Open Research, 2:11, doi:0.12688/hrbopenres.12897.1
  45. O’Donnell, D. (2019) Keep Control: A co-designed educational and information campaign supporting older people to be empowered against financial abuse. Advances in Elder Abuse Research. Amanda Phelan (Ed) Springer International Publishing AG.
  46. O’Donnell, D., Ní Shé, É., McCarthy M., et al., Enabling Public, Patient and Practitioner Involvement by Co-Designing Frailty Pathways in Acute Care Settings. BMC Health Services Research 2019 https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-019-4626-8
  47. O’Donovan, R., Ward, M., De Brún, A., & McAuliffe, E. (2019). Safety culture in healthcare teams: A narrative review of the literature. Journal of Nursing Management, 27(5), 871-883. 
  48. Obayashi, K., Kodate, N., Kondo, H., Okamoto, Y., Ishii, Y., & Masuyama, S. (2019). 69 How Useful is an Integrated Assistive Technology System in a Nursing Home? Understanding its Effectiveness on Users and their Perceptions. Age and Ageing, 48(Supplement_3), iii1-iii16. doi:10.1093/ageing/afz102.15
  49. O'Brien, M., O'Donnell, D., & Clyne, B. (2019). 233 Potential Deprivation of Patient Liberty: A Qualitative Study of Current Practice Amongst Geriatricians in a Tertiary Setting. Age and Ageing, 48(Supplement_3), iii17-iii65. doi:10.1093/ageing/afz103.140
  50. O'Donnell, D. (2019). The Health and Well-Being of Family Carers of Older People: An Exploratory Cross-Sectional Analysis. Age and Ageing, 48(Supplement_3), iii1-iii16. doi:10.1093/ageing/afz102.14
  51. O'Donnell, D., Davies, C., Frattori, F., Donnelly, S., Ni ShÈ, E., O'Shea, M., Kroll, T. (2019). Implementing Assisted Decision-making in Healthcare in Ireland: Understanding Enablers, Barriers and Context from the perspective of patients and healthcare professionals. International Journal of Integrated Care. doi:10.5334/ijic.s3066
  52. O'Donovan, M. A., McCallion, P., McCarron, M., Lynch, L., Mannan, H., & Byrne, E. (2019). A narrative synthesis scoping review of life course domains within health service utilisation frameworks. HRB Open Research, 2.
  53. O'Mahony ENí Shé ÉBailey JMannan HMcAuliffe ERyan JCronin JCooney MT. (2019) Using geographic information systems to map older people's emergency department attendance for future health planning. Emerg Med J. 2019 Nov 2. pii: emermed-2018-207952. doi: 10.1136/emermed-2018-207952. [Epub ahead of print]
  54. Phelan, A. and O’Donnell, D. (2019) ‘An ecological perspective on elder abuse interventions’ Advances in Elder Abuse Research. Amanda Phelan (Ed) Springer International Publishing AG.
  55. Phelan, A., McCarthy, S., & O'Donnell, D. (2019). Irish Bank Staff's Experiences of Financial Abuse of Older People-Qualitative Results. In International Association of Geriatrics and Gerontology. Gothenburg, Sweden.
  56. Power J, Gilmore B, Vallières F, Toomey E, Mannan H, McAuliffe E. (2019). Adapting health interventions for local fit when scaling-up: A realist review protocol. BMJ Open 9(1).
  57. Ryan, P., McGrath, C., Lawrie, I., Fitzsimons, C., O’Shea, J., & De Brún, A. (2019). Enhancing efficiency in a cardiac investigations department by increasing remote patient monitoring. International Journal for Quality in Healthcare, in press.
  58. Scott, J., Dawson, P., Heavey, E., De Brún, A., Buttery, A., Waring, J., & Flynn, D. (2019). Content analysis of patient safety incident reports for older adult patient transfer, handovers and discharges: Do they serve organisations, staff or patients? Journal of Patient Safety, in press.
  59. Scott, J., Heavy, E., Waring, J., De Brún, A. & Dawson, P. (2019). Feasibility of implementing a survey for patients to provide safety experience feedback following a care transition. BMC Health Services Research, 19, 613. 
  60. Smith, A., Macaden, L., Kroll, T., Alhusein, N., Taylor, A., Killick, K., . . . Watson, M. (2019). A qualitative exploration of the experiences of community dwelling older adults with sensory impairment/s receiving polypharmacy on their pharmaceutical care journey. Age and ageing, 48(6), 895-902. doi:10.1093/ageing/afz092
  61. Smith, E., Borg, J., Mannan,H., MacLachlan, M., & Smith, E. (2019). Assistive technology content in United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities reports by states parties. Global perspectives on assistive technology, 350.      
  62. Somanadhan, S., Dorris, E., Nicholson, E., & Kroll, T. (2019). Identifying Rare Disease Research Priorities: Rare Disease Research Partnership (RAinDRoP). In Euro-paediatrics.
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  66. Vergunst, R., Swartz, L., Hem, K. G., Eide, A. H., Mannan, H., MacLachlan, M., ... & Schneider, M. (2019). The perceived needs-access gap for health services among persons with disabilities in a rural area within South Africa. Disability and rehabilitation, 41(22), 2676-2682.
  67. Ward M, McAuliffe E, Fitzsimons J, O'Donovan R. (2019). Informing healthcare team performance: Integrating data to improve Quality and Safety. International Perspectives in Psychology: Research, Practice, Consultation 8(1):53-56
  68. Ward ME, Wakai A, McDowell R, Boland F, Coughlan E, Hamza M, Browne J, O’Sullivan R, Geary U, McDaid F, Ni She, É, Drummond, F.J, Deasy, C & McAuliffe, E. (2019) Developing outcome, process and balancing measures for an emergency department longitudinal patient monitoring system using a modified Delphi, BMC Emergency Medicine 19(1):14
  69. Ward, M, Ní Shé, E, Brún, A, Korpos, C, Hamza, M, Burke, E, Duffy, A, Egan, K, Geary, U, Holland, C, Grady, J, Robinson, K, Smith, A, Watson, A, McAuliffe, E. (2019). The co-design, implementation and evaluation of a serious board game 'PlayDecide Patient Safety' to educate junior doctors about patient safety and the importance of reporting safety concerns. BMC Medical Education.
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Our news & dissemination activities

Dr Ikenna Ebuenyi presenting an overview of the APPLICABLE Project at a project closing event in Lilongwe, Malawi this morning.  The meeting included the MInistry of Gender and Social Welfare, the Ministry of Health, Irish Aid (who co-funded the project with the Irish Research Council) and several other officials in the Malawian government.  The project, led by Maynooth University in partnership with the Centre for Social Research, Malawi has informed the development of Malawi's new disability policy and has resulted in the government adopting an essential Assistive Technology List as an essential component of the policy, a key outcome of the project.  Professor Eilish McAuliffe as an Advisor to the project was also in attendance at the meeting.

Professor McAuliffe held a group discussion with students on youth mental health in Malawi as part of preparatory work for a proposal to Horizon Europe in which the University of Malawi has agreed to partner.  They discussed the many challenges they face, including the limited knowledge of mental health in their parents' generation and the unrealistic expectations on young males in their culture.  High unemployment rates are also contributing to anxiety and depression. The views of youth will inform the project design and implementation.

Professor Eilish McAuliffe returns to the Centre for Social Research (CSR) at the University of Malawi where she worked as a Research Fellow in the early days of the HIV/AIDS crisis in the 1990s.  As well as reconnecting with former colleagues, she also held discussions about the development of a partnership between CSR and UCD IRIS Centre focused on the exchange of staff to develop methodological and context expertise and foster the development of joint research programmes. 

Dr Purity Mwendwa conducting focus group discussions in Northern Kenya last week.  Dr Mwendwa, as part of her government of Ireland Scholarship is working on male involvement in ending female Genital mutilation.  These discussion groups not only help understand male perspectives, but also inform them of the negative effects of this practice on women's health and well-being.

Congratulations to Dr. Brynne Gilmore who is this year’s winner of the Early Career Researcher of the Year Award by Irish Research Council.


We are wishing farewell to Dr. Éidín Ní Shé as she starts a new phase of her career at UNSW in Sydney.

Eidin has joined UCD Health Systems division in 2016 as a Research Fellow on two research projects: Imbuing Medical Professionalism-Medical Education Research Grant  (IMP-MERG) with focus on patient and public involvement and Research Emergency Department-Adult Clinical Escalation (RED-ACE) project. Since she has had a wide ranging impact in a number of research projects and areas. She was instrumental in advancing a project funded by the Irish Health Research Board (HRB) as an Applied Partnership Award (APA) on improving care pathways for frail older patients in close collaboration with clinical partners, family carers and services users (Systematic Approaches to Improving Care for Frail Older Patients SAFE). Further, Eidin helped conceptualise and then implement the HRB funded Public and Patient Involvement initiative at UCD as the principal project coordinator (UCD PPI IGNITE). Eidin worked with numerous PPI champions at UCD as well as external academic and patient partner organisations to advance PPI in health and social care research to develop practical supports as well as promote critical reflection about meaningful PPI. especially with seldom heard population groups. Externally, Eidin was instrumental in advancing engaged research with the Irish University Association’s Campus Engage initiative, HEI partners across Ireland and beyond. 

She has further been instrumental in the design, implementation and dissemination of research around new Irish legislation around the Assisted Decision Making Capacity Act (ADM). The so-called (PADMACS) project (Promoting Assisted Decision Making in Acute Care Settings for Care Planning Purposes) was also funded by the HRB as an Applied Partnership Award (APA) together with clinical and NGO partners. The project produced a serious game, which has since been used by numerous health and social care professionals as well as students to examine challenges around purposeful assisted decision supports in a variety of settings. 

It is difficult to define the scope of Dr. Éidín Ní Shé’s work in the short period of just four short years. She has made outstanding and far reaching contributions in so many areas. Nearly all health systems projects have involved Eidin in one way or another. She ensured that work was accomplished to the highest standard and on time. Eidin made herself always available to support PhD students, the Health System team and colleagues in the UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems, the wider UCD ‘ecosystem and beyond. She contributed lectures and presentations in relation to health systems topic. Eidin has been a key ambassador for UCD IRIS and made its work recognisable.

Eidin, knowing that we cannot thank you enough, we just want to say Thank you Éidín! For being a wonderful colleague and friend, a trailblazer in many areas, and an amazing and well-rounded academic. We wish you all the very best for the next exciting venture in your career at the University of New South Wales. We miss you but take comfort in the fact that you will always remain connected with us and Ireland.


Congratulations to Ms. Lisa Rogers on receiving the best abstract’s award at the 13th Annual Conference on  the Science of Dissemination and Implementation in Health! 

Each year, the Best of D&I Review Committee select the most outstanding abstracts in nine different areas of dissemination and implementation science in health. These research abstracts represent some of the highest priorities for dissemination and implementation science now and in the future to help optimize health and health care in the world.

Building the Future of D&I Science: Training, Infrastructure, and Emerging Research Areas The micropolitics of implementation: A qualitative study exposing an unexplored path within implementation science. Presenter: Lisa Rogers, University College Dublin

Read more about Best of the 13th Annual Conference on the Science of Dissemination and Implementation in Health: https://academyhealth.org/publications/2020-10/best-13th-annual-conference-science-dissemination-and-implementation-health

Dr. Thérѐse McDonnell presented at Health Economics Association of Ireland (HEAI) Seminar Series Autumn/Winter 2020

On 30th September 2020, Dr. Thérѐse McDonnell presented results from the CUPID Project to the Health Economics Association of Ireland (HEAI), the first presentation of the HEAI's monthly Virtual Seminar Series for Autumn/Winter 2020. The presentation outlined the impact of the introduction of free GP care for children aged under 6 on attendance at Emergency Departments in Ireland.

Roisin O’Donovan delivered presentation of her PhD work at the ISQua World Patient Safety Day

On 17 September 2020, the World Health Organization organised World Patient Safety Day. The theme for this year was "Health Worker Safety: A Priority for Patient Safety". Everyone working in healthcare was invited to speak up for health worker safety. The webinar was attended by 190 participants from 54 countries. What a fantastic audience to have!

Ms Róisín O’Donovan is a PhD student at the UCD Centre for Research, Education and Innovation in Health Systems (UCD IRIS) at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems in University College Dublin. Since joining UCD Health Systems in October 2016, she has worked on the 'Collective Leadership and Safety Cultures' (Co-Lead). Her involvement in this project furthered her interest in research as a tool for positive change within the Irish healthcare system and the use of co-design methodologies to understand and find ways to tackle the challenges faced by healthcare teams. Her PhD research is focused on understanding and improving psychological safety in healthcare teams. This research is funded under the Irish Research Council Employment-Based Postgraduate Programme and her employment partner, the Ireland East Hospital Group. She holds a BA(Hons) in Applied Psychology (University College Cork) and a Masters in Psychological Science (University College Dublin). 

Click here to access ISQua Webinar Recording: Psychological Safety - Why understanding voice and silence behaviours is critical to staff and patient safety 

January 2019 - Dr. Sabrina Anjara spoke at the National Senior Police Officers Meeting in Jakarta

At the invitation of Indonesia’s National Police Chief, Dr Sabrina Anjara (Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Co-Lead Project, Health Systems) spoke at the National Senior Police Officers Meeting in Jakarta, on 31 January 2019. Sabrina presented the results of her recent research at the University of Cambridge. During her trip, Sabrina was also invited to speak at the Coordinating Ministry of Politics, Law, and Security with distinguished members of the audience representing institutions such as the Ministry of Communication & Information, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

UCD Health Systems Research Showcase

On the 24th October 2018 the UCD Health Systems Research Group hosted its first research showcase event in the UCD Charles Institute, Belfield, Dublin 4. The purpose of the Showcase was to present the range of current Health Systems research projects to our health services and other partners, and to offer an opportunity for discussion of future research areas and collaborations. Please click on this link to read brief summaries about selected projects and explore Health Systems webpage for more information on relevant research activities. 

October 2018 - Prof Eilish McAuliffe visiting the Australian Institute for Health Innovation

Prof Eilish McAuliffe visiting the Australian Institute for Health Innovation where she met with Prof Jeffrey Braithwaite, Founding Director of AIHI and Director of Centre for Healthcare Resilience and Implementation Science (CHRIS) and Prof Johanna Westbrook, Director of the Centre for Health Systems and Safety Research (CHSSR) and members of their research teams. Pictured here with Dr Robyn Clay-Williams, Senior Research Fellow and Lead for Human Factors & Resilience Research, Centre for Healthcare Resilience and Implementation Science (CHRIS). 

June 2018 - Prof Eilish McAuliffe, Health Systems Group, UCD visits WHO Centre for Health Development, Kobe, Japan, to discuss research and development issues related to Assistive Technology.

HRB-TMRN 3rd Trial Methodology Symposium in Dublin

On the 20th October 2017 the HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network (HRB-TMRN) and UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems hosted its 3rd ‘Trial Methodology Symposium’ in the Radisson Blu, St Helens Hotel, Dublin. The purpose of the Symposium was to stimulate discussions between scientists, citizens, research organisations, journalists and other media personnel to think more deeply about the parts we can all play in ensuring that our science connects with society in a meaningful and transparent way. The Symposium was officially launched by Dr Mairead O Driscoll, interim CEO of the Health Research Board (HRB), followed by Dr Sandra Galvin, Programme Manager of the HRB-TMRN. The theme of this year’s Symposium was“Transparency in Trials”.

The HRB-TBRN is a successful, well recognised national support network. It is a collaborative initiative between several Irish and international higher education institutes and methodology centres led by Professor Declan Devane, NUI Galway. Its objective is to strengthen the methodology and reporting of trials in health and social care in Ireland so that they become more relevant, accessible and influential for patients and other support users, practitioners, policy makers and the public. 

A list of notable, high-caliber speakers were presenting at this Symposium, including Dr. Ben Goldacre, a best-selling author, broadcaster, campaigner, medical doctor and academic who specialises in unpicking the misuse of science and statistics by journalists, politicians, quacks, drug companies, Dr. Síle Lane from Sense About Science who highlighted the important AllTrials campaign, Dr Richard Morey, Cardiff University, who discussed the role of reviewers in increasing transparency in trials, Dr. Trish Groves from the British Medical Journal who covered why, when and how should trialists share clinical trial data and, finally, Dr. Teresa Maguire from the Department of Health, spoke about the role of evidence-informed decision making in health nationally.

Also contributing at this event were the four HRB-TMRN PhD scholars who are the first national cohort of PhD students specifically working on the topic of trial methodology.

L-R: Ms. Marina Zaki, Ms. Caroline Hurley, Dr. Ben Goldacre, Ms. Aislinn Conway, Ms. Jessica Power


Presentation on the Sláintecare Report

As part of the Health Sciences Summer School Róisín Shortall T.D and Chairperson of the Special Committee on the Future of Healthcare presented on the Sláintecare report. Following the presentation there was a panel discussion chaired by Prof. Eilish McAuliffe with contributions from those working in the system and members of the public:
Mr Eugene Callan, Disability Federation of Ireland Public representative on the SAFE Project - Systematic Approach to Improving care for Frail Older patients
Dr Diarmuid O Shea, Consultant physician in medicine for the elderly and head of department in St Vincent's University Hospital and clinical lead on the National Programme for Older Persons with the Health Service Executive
Róisín Shortall T.D and Chairperson of the Special Committee on the Future of Healthcare. Watch video

Attendance at the UL Public and Patient Involvement in Research Summer School

Dr Éidín Ní Shé recently attended the UL Public and Patient Involvement in Research  Summer School that was held at the University of Limerick on 22-23 June 2017. Éidín was presented with a copy of the recently published UL Engage report that she had contributed to on 'Creating Community Research Partnerships-Field Notes from the 'Count Me in' Project' by Alphonse Basogomba and Associate Professor Maura Adshead (pictured).





European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology 2017 Congress 

As part of the Co-Lead research programme, Ms Una Cunningham (pictured) presented a poster based on her on-going research at the European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology (EAWOP) in Dublin on May 19, 2017. The title of the poster: 'Understanding the factors that enable Irish healthcare teams to work effectively: A realist approach - Stage 1 Building Programme Theory'.

At the same conference, Dr Aoife De Brún presented a paper based on a social network analysis study within the Co-Lead research programme. The title of the paper: 'Using social network analysis to map leadership networks in a new hospital group: Does collective leadership emerge?'. BMJ International Forum on Quality and Safety

Dr. Aoife De Brún presented at the BMJ International Forum on Quality and Safety in London, UK, 26 - 28 April 2017. Poster presented as part of the Co-Lead research programme: A qualitative analysis of the early functioning of a newly established hospital network: Understanding experiences of hospital integration at leadership level. 











From care spaces to caring systems - TEDx talk at Queen Margaret University

On April 21, 2017 Professor Thilo Kroll, Professor of Health Systems Management, UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems, delivered a talk about the importance of supporting families in pluralistic and dynamic societies: From care spaces to caring systems. 

This talk was given at a TEDx event in Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh. Please click on this link to watch the presentation. 

Exchange Visits between Staff from the UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems and the School of Nursing,  Meru University in Kenya

Dr. Gabrielle O'Kelly, Programme Director, Higher Diploma in Mental Health, and Dr. Purity Mwendwa, Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems, recently travelled to Meru University in Kenya to explore the possibility of establishing a collaboration between UCD and Meru University. Two members of staff from the School of Nursing in Meru University, Dr Naomi Mutea, the Dean of the School and MaryJoy Kaimuri then paid a return visit early in April.  Meru University welcomed its first cohort of B.Sc. Nursing students in January of this year and the University is keen to collaborate with nursing programmes that are well established. This visit was made possible through the award of the ESTHER Ireland Small Grant Scheme, a European initiative that involves the twinning of European institutions with those in developing countries to strengthen health care services by building expertise and sharing experience. Because UCD keeps an external focus, seeking to lead and shape agendas through alliances and partnerships with its peers, nationally and internationally, it is envisioned that such a partnership will serve to fulfil this mission and enhance UCD’s reputation as Ireland’s Global University. 











HRB-TMRN START Radio Podcast

On March 22, 2017 Ms. Marina Zaki (HRB-TMRN PhD Scholar, UCD Health Systems) was interviewed on Galway Bay FM and Connemara FM Radio stations talking about the HRB-TMRN START (Schools Teaching Awareness of Randomised Trials) Clinical Trials Competition for Children. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN (Skip to 58:30).

Africa Health Agenda International Conference 

Dr. Purity Mwendwa presented a paper at the Africa Health Agenda International Conference held from 7th - 9th March 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya. Title of the Paper: "Assessing the demand for community health workers’ social support: Perspectives of mothers in rural Rwanda". 

1st National Patient Safety Conference

Dr. Éidín Ní Shé and Karen Egan delivered presentation on Medical Professionalism in Relation to Safety: Junior Doctors’ Experiences in Practice at the 1st National Patient Safety Office conference on 7th and 8th December 2016. Please click here to view the presentation. 

HRB 30-year Anniversary Conference

Professor Eilish McAuliffe delivered a speech about challenging cultures and systems at the HRB National Health Research Conference.  The conference took place in Dublin Castle on November 30, 2016.  Please click on this link to watch Prof. McAuliffe's presentation. The conference programme can be viewed at this link.

2nd Annual HRB-TMRN Trial Methodology Symposium

Ms. Marina Zaki (HRB-TMRN PhD Scholar, UCD) and Mr. David Farrar (HRB-TMRN Summer Scholar, UCD) presented their research in the 2nd Annual HRB-TMRN Trial Methodology Symposium in October, 2016 in the Kingsley hotel in Cork. Please click on this link to watch a few minute video clip on event's highlights. 

Research Conversations in UCD, MMUH and SVUH

A new series of ‘research conversations’ has begun  in the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, St Vincent’s University Hospital and the College of Health Sciences in UCD. These conversations are open to all staff across the healthcare disciplines in the hospitals and the college and are intended to help foster research communities and collaborations across these sites.

Global Health Realist Group gives workshop on realist methods

Members of the Global Health Realist Group from CGH ran a workshop through the HRB - Trials Methodology Research Network at UCD O'Brien Centre fo Sciences on February 25th, 2016. During this workshop Centre for Global Health staff introduced realist methodology, and provided examples of their own work using realist reviews and realist evaluations in global health.

The Global Health Realist Group aims to provide a space for academics and practitioners interested in realist methodology in global health to collaborate, learn together, and work towards the advancement of these research methodologies. If you are interested in joining the group or would like more information, please read more here, or join the LinkedIn group by emailing gilmorb@tcd.ie.

Launch of the HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network (HRB-TMRN) 

On the 24th and 25th of September 2015, the launch of the HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network took place in the Gibson Hotel, Dublin. The network (HRB-TMRN) is a new, collaborative initiative between a number of Irish and international higher education institutes and methodology centres. Its mission is to strengthen the methodology and reporting of trials in health and social care on the island of Ireland so that they become more relevant, accessible and influential for patients and other service users, practitioners, policy makers and the public. This will be achieved through a programme of work relating to the methodology of trials and focussed on (i) support (ii) training and education and (iii) research and innovation.

The Director of the network, Professor Declan Devane, the Co-Ordinator, Dr. Sandra Galvin, along with the Executive Committee, and CEO of the HRB, Dr Graham Love, welcomed all attendees to the official launch. Professor Eilish McAuliffe, Head of Health Systems in UCD and Ms. Marina Zaki, who has recently started her PhD programme in the UCD Health Systems group, attended the event and met with the other participants and PhD students from the network’s partner sites.

Sir Iain Chalmers, Co-founder of the Cochrane Collaboration was keynote speaker and gave an interesting account of “The James Lind Library: Illustrating the Evolution of Fair Tests of Treatments”.  The PhD students associated with the network also gave brief presentations on their research.  Day two of the event was dominated by a series of parallel workshops on a variety of topics related to the conduct of trials from Sample Size Calculations to Studies within a Trial/Review (SWATS/SWARS) to Health Behaviour Change Strategies for Clinical Trials.

Above: Prof. Eilish McAuliffe, UCD Health Systems and Prof. Declan Devane, Director of the HRB-TMRN.

Below L-R: Ms. Marina Zaki, PhD student in Health Systems, UCD I Ms. Jessica O’Dowd, PhD student, TCD I Ms. Lydia Emerson, MRC-HTMR PhD Student, Queen’s University, Belfast   I   Sir Iain Chalmers, Co-founder of the Cochrane Collaboration  I Ms. Aislinn Conway, PhD student, NUIG I Ms. Caroline Hurley, PhD student, UCC.

Marina Zaki (on the left of the picture above) is the UCD PhD scholar working on the HRB-TMRN. She obtained her BSc. (Pharmacology) from the School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Sciences in UCD in 2013, carried out her BSc. Research project in the University of Copenhagen (Erasmus) and was awarded her MSc. (Translational Medicine) from King’s College London in 2015. The focus of Marina’s PhD project will be looking at bringing awareness to the benefits of statistician involvement from the beginning of clinical trials; the roles they play, their impact on the conduct of trial designs, decision making, reporting and the publication of trial results. Marina is studying under the supervision of Professor Eilish McAuliffe with co-supervisors Dr. Marie Galligan (Biostatistician and Clinical Research Tutor, School of Medicine, UCD) and Professor Declan Devane (Director of the HRB-TMRN and Professor of Midwifery, NUI Galway).

For additional information on the HRB-TMRN visit http://www.hrb-tmrn.ie/





What is a heath system?

A health system consists of all organizations, people and actions whose primary intent is to promote, restore or maintain health (World Health Organisation (WHO).  Six basic components, which the WHO refers to as System Building Blocks are common to all health services (service delivery, health workforce, information, medicines and technologies, financing, leadership/governance) and the goals of health systems can be simplified as responsiveness, efficiency, improved health and social and financial risk protection.

Why study health systems?

“Public health [today] enjoys commitment, resources, and powerful interventions... but the power of these interventions is not matched by the power of health systems to deliver them to those in greatest need, on an adequate scale and on time... This arises, in part, from the fact that research on health systems has been so badly neglected and underfunded... In the absence of sound evidence, we will have no good way to compel efficient investments in health systems.”
Dr Margaret Chan, Director-General, World Health Organization

"Yet all too often reform efforts are not evaluated adequately. Each innovation in health systems constitutes a learning opportunity. Not to take advantage of these opportunities condemns us to rediscover at great cost what is already known or to repeat past mistakes”.
Dr. Julio Frenk, President, University of Miami, formerly Faculty Dean, Harvard School of Public Health, Secretary of Health of Mexico

Studying and Researching with the Health Systems Group

Health Systems research students will gain a greater understanding of how health services are being planned and delivered, what may be facilitating or preventing access to health care, and what policy or protocol changes may be necessary to make health systems equitable for all. The doctoral programme in Health Systems will provide students greater depth and preparation to conduct research about the performance of health systems. We offer an interdisciplinary course of study designed to provide students with advanced knowledge, analytical skills, and competencies in health policy, planning, financing, management, evaluation; and research on health systems. The overall goal of the PhD programme in Health Systems is to produce thought leaders in the management, practice, and research dealing with health systems. The PhD programme in Health Systems prepares students to become independent investigators in academic and non-academic research institutions, and emphasises contributions to theory and practice. Graduates of the programme will have developed competencies to play leadership roles in developing and strengthening health systems.

Building upon UCD's role as a leader in transforming health systems and the formalised collaborative relationships UCD has with Ireland East Group Hospitals and the strong partnerships UCD has with major health systems in Europe and Low and Middle Income Countries, the curriculum draws on an interdisciplinary faculty with expertise in nursing and midwifery, health policy, management, psychology, implementation science, social gerontology, disability studies, gender studies and sociology.

What is health systems research

Health systems research addresses policy and service delivery questions that have implications for the performance of the health system as a whole. It addresses a wide range of questions, from health financing, governance, and policy to problems with structuring, planning, management, human resources, service delivery, referral pathways, patient pathways, quality of care, performance management and health outcomes. Health systems research, by necessity, is highly multidisciplinary, with a strong emphasis on social and health sciences disciplines.  Often there is considerable involvement with policy makers, managers and other healthcare professionals.

What distinguishes health systems research is its audience which tends to be broader than a particular service, team or unit.  A question that often arises is how does health systems research differ from health services research, operational research and implementation science?  The reality is that they are not mutually exclusive research domains and all of these may form components of a health systems research project.  For example, a project whose aim is to develop a model of community-based management of a chronic condition that is currently managed in a hospital setting, might begin with an epidemiological study to determine need for the service and an operational research study to understand how the condition is currently managed for patients. 

The next step could be trialling a community intervention.  If this proves successful there will be a need for an implementation science study to identify what is necessary to put this successful model into practice throughout the system.  Additional questions that a health systems study might address are how does this new model impact on staffing requirements? What are the positive and negative impacts on other services? Could the same model be applied to other services?  What are the impacts on patient quality of life? What is the impact on productivity, throughput and cost?

Past events