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August 30, 2001

Health Sciences schools collaborate to offer MS, certificate in clinical research

In two years, 31 health care professionals are expected to add another degree to go along with their M.D.s, Ph.D.s and Pharm.D.s — a master of science or a certificate in clinical research from Pitt.

The program, a collaboration among the schools of the Health Sciences, will teach a diverse group of individuals including doctors, fellows, pharmacists and nurses how to plan and conduct high-quality clinical research involving human subjects.

"Clinical research has been growing at an astronomical rate over the past few years, proving its benefits to health care," said Wishwa Kapoor, course director, director of the Center for Research on Health Care, Falk Professor of Medicine and chief of the division of general internal medicine. "This program provides formalized training for research investigators so they can yield the best possible outcome from their studies while maintaining patient safety."

Upon completion of the core curriculum, students receive a certificate in clinical research.

Students then may continue their studies in one of four areas of interest: effectiveness, outcomes and quality research; clinical therapeutics; health and behavior, or epidemiology. In each of these areas, students will design their own research proposal. At the end of the second year, students completing the courses and research project will receive the M.S. in clinical research degree.

"Through the clinical research training program, we can greatly improve on the already high-quality research programs at the University of Pittsburgh by strengthening researchers' knowledge and skill base," said Mark Roberts, associate director of the program and associate professor of medicine.

The program is sponsored by the Center for Research on Health Care. It is being funded through grants from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and the National Institutes of Health.

Filed under: Feature,Volume 34 Issue 1

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