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Milli Smith's Butterfly Stickers

Image result for butterfly logo on baby crib

Read the story of Milli Smith here and learn how a simple sticker can help raise awareness of the loss of siblings in multiple pregnancies and births.

Oxygen levels play key role in evolution of early animals

Research by Dr Rosalie Tostevin at the University of Oxford has shown how oxygen levels in the oceans played a key role in the evolution of the early animals. You can read more about the research here.

Oxygen was key then to the evolution of the earliest animals, and is key now for the survival of babies born premature. We value the research being done into improving the survival and respiratory wellbeing of premature infants, both in their early days and thoughout their childhood. Baby-OSCAR is researching one such way that might reduce the incidences of death or severe respiratory problems among extremely preterm infants.

‘Learning from the differing perspectives of families and clinicians to optimise recruitment to children’s clinical trials’

Following on from the piece of research which came out of the RECRUIT Study, funded by the NIHR HTA, Bridget Young, University of Liverpool, presented the following slides entitled ‘Learning from the differing perspectives of families and clinicians to optimise recruitment to children’s clinical trials’.  The conclusions she draws are:

•  Despite saying little during trial discussions parents described feeling comfortable and involved and they valued the way that practitioners explained the trials

•  But practitioners were often concerned that families were overwhelmed with information

•  Parents did not object to being asked about trials and many positively wanted to be approached

•  By contrast, practitioners often saw research as a burden for families and some felt anxious about approaching them

In her last slide she touches on the implications, stating:

•  Having an understanding of patient/family perspectives may help practitioners in recruiting vulnerable patients to clinical trials

•  Question the assumption that inviting patients to join a trial necessarily burdens them

•  Recruitment is not just about information – it also has important social dimensions

•  Recruitment seemed an arduous process for some practitioners – need to improve their experience?

The slides can be found following this URL:

RECRUIT: a qualitative study

A qualitative interview and observational study was conducted to investigate: Processes in recruitment to randomised controlled trials of medicines for children (RECRUIT): a qualitative study’ and was published in March 2015.

The concerns of some practitioners that families would be overburdened were unfounded, as parents did not object to being asked about research. Practitioners may benefit from support that helps them feel personally more at ease in approaching families about trials. Parents and young people often described the trial discussions in strongly positive terms and emphasised the importance of the social and emotional aspects of these encounters. Informed consent training could be enhanced if it similarly emphasised these aspects of recruitment; the misunderstandings we identified indicate how this training could also help practitioners to improve the clarity of their trial discussions with families. Guidelines on informed consent documents should take account of findings that all groups thought that these documents should be shorter and more straightforward.

The full article can be viewed following this URL:

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This study is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme (Reference Number 11/92/15). The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.