The purpose of the IRNN’s Count Me In survey was to measure and describe the Clinical Research Nurse (CRN) and Midwife (CRM) workforce in Ireland. The ‘Count Me In’ survey was a national survey of Clinical Research Nurses/Midwives based in a variety of settings. The report was launched at the IRNN conference on Thursday 14 November 2019 and can be downloaded here: Count Me In Study – Final Report
Reason for this survey is that the number of CRN/Ms working in Ireland is unknown, however it is estimated to be in the region of 200. Many CRN/Ms are based in established healthcare institutions and research centres/facilities, however the posts are filled on a sporadic and ad hoc basis. CRN/Ms may also be employed by commercial organisations or medical research charity groups.
CRN/M job titles, roles and responsibilities and terms of employment may vary between organisations and even from one post to another. A consequence of the lack of standardisation is an absence of job security. Furthermore, there is little professional support and no clear or defined career pathway for CRN/Ms. Given these factors, nurses may be less inclined to consider the CRN/M role as a career prospect.
The aim of the ‘Count Me In’ survey was to reach all CRN/Ms in the country to discover:
• How many research nurses/midwives are currently working in Ireland
• Where they are located
• The terms of employment
• The roles and responsibilities.
This study involved contacting research nurses and midwives already associated with IRNN, but also stakeholders within organisations nationwide. The success of the survey was very much reliant on the Irish research community. The data has been collated into a report that will be disseminated to stakeholders, such as the Health Research Board (HRB) and the Health Service Executive (HSE). The ‘Count Me In’ Report will be launched at the IRNN 2019 conference and presented at international meetings.
Findings are being used to advocate for increased recognition of the research nurse workforce, and to justify the development of formalised job descriptions, education and integration within academic and healthcare institutions. On completion of the survey a database to retain the details of research nurses/midwives who have provided consent for future communication is currently being developed. This will be in adherence to the General Data Protection Regulations.
Participant information: Participant Information Leaflet for ‘Count Me In’ Survey
If you would like more information please contact the Project Manager Carole Schilling ([email protected]).