CENTER FOR PUBLIC HEALTH AND POLICY RESEARCH (CPHPR)
DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY MEDICINE,
COLLEGE OF MEDICINE,
UNIVERSITY OF NIGERIA, NSUKKA
Table of Contents
CORE VALUES 3
PLATFORMS FOR DISSEMINATION OF EVIDENCE 6
PROJECT/RESEARCH GROUPS 7
OPERATIONAL MODEL 9
EXTERNAL RELATIONS 10
SOURCES OF FUNDS 11
MEMBERS OF CPHPR 13
The Center for public health and policy research (CPHPR) will be the home of innovative research in public health. It will focus on collaborative studies between research groups in various fields of public health, with a single purpose of improving the lives of individuals and households locally and in the developing countries. The overarching emphasis of the CPHPR is to engage in the generation and communication of research evidence in a way that helps improve population health, enhances fair financing of healthcare, and promotes the responsiveness of the health system to population needs and expectations. The center aims be the focal point for evidence based research projects designed to assess specific parameters in the local population and apply learned skills and techniques to improve the health of populations in Nigeria, and in developing countries. It seeks to create an atmosphere of professionalism and trust that encourages creativity, idea sharing, mentoring, focused research that is both multidisciplinary, trans-disciplinary and capable of churning out the necessary research publications and outputs.
To be the leading center and reference point for excellence in public health and policy research in the developing world.
To consistently conduct high quality research, training and public health activities that will add value to the lives of populations across the world
Local and international
1) Excellence and Diligence in Research: Adhering to global best practices in research and public health by eschewing sloppy outputs that may not withstand external scrutiny so as to position the center to become a paragon for research in developing settings.
2) Innovation and new insights: Team members will be encouraged to think out-of-the-box and to utilize novel research methods to enhance outputs.
3) Collaboration and team building: To build the desired camaraderie and professional atmosphere among a trans-disciplinary team that will allow for large intra and inter center studies that will be of high impact and capable of addressing big problems.
4) Leadership Opportunities’ creation: To be a leader in research activities that solve local problems using local resources, thereby creating a hub for future leaders in the field of public health practice, research and academia.
5) Population wide impact: To improve the lives of the individuals and households locally and in the developing world.
6) Mentoring and Training for prospects: To create an environment of hands-on guidance, where research mentors will instill their values, work ethic and “scholarly seeds” in the younger generation of researchers.
7) Reflection of diversity and Local relevance: To reflect diversity in the constitution of teams and the pursuance of projects such that local excellence and innovative approaches that are unique to our environment are celebrated.
The need to set up a Center for Public Health and Health Policy Research at this time is crucial and deserving urgency, for it is an idea that is long overdue. Recent outbreaks of emergent infectious diseases have made the need for domesticated research even more necessary, as certain illnesses that affect the local population may not receive the desired attention or urgency of foreign donors, who essentially restrict their funding to few areas in order to protect their interests. Besides this, other reasons why a center focused on public health and policy research is necessary are stated as follows;
1) To improve clinical and public health research infrastructure and bolster the capability of scholars to deliver on the University’s vision of Excellence in “restoring the dignity of man”.
2) To focus or pool disparate research activities of faculty members to yield high impact research outcomes that will be a reference point for the academic community in Nigeria for use locally and globally; to enhance the reputation of University of Nigeria and make her even more favorable for future research collaboration and grants awards.
3) To access the local Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) grants that are currently only 22.8% subscribed as at November 2014. (1) With about 7.8 billion Naira worth of grants currently unused and yet to be accessed, the need to refocus research efforts to maximally utilize these grants is exigent.
4) To attract additional international grants from donor agencies and partner organizations like the National Institutes for Health, the Ford Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to expand research opportunities for our people.
5) To encourage multi-disciplinary and trans-disciplinary research in various areas amongst different professionals.
6) To create a platform through which the public is kept informed on contemporary public health issues based on the best evidence and research from applicable and verifiable local data pools.
7) To provide a structured platform for younger researchers and residents to develop essential research abilities in targeted areas that are locally relevant and globally recognized.
8) The need to generate specific insights that can guide lawmakers and policy makers at various levels on the correct evidence based approaches needed to ensure sound health policy formulation and implementation.
9) To create the capacity to consistently compete through research with the top universities and research centers around the world
10) Importantly, to develop and instill the culture of mentoring in faculty and foster collaborative relationships between Mentors and the Mentored, thereby enhancing the culture of excellence, leadership and succession in the next generation of researchers.
11) There is also a critical need to improve the research impact, reputation and visibility of the university by ensuring that available research evidence is translated from academic centers to actual policy and practice.
12) There is the potential accrued benefit of improved reputation, visibility and higher impact factor of the department, College, teaching hospital and the University (in the research world) as a result of research activities.
13) There is the need to upgrade, increase and redouble research efforts originating from the Teaching Hospital in Enugu and the University of Nigeria. Thus, a research initiative like the Center for Public Health and Health Policy Research becomes necessary to jump-start the process
The following are objectives of the center
1) To attract through the center, the best research talent pool in the country and around the world to the department, college and the University. The center has the potential to make the University a research destination for collaborators from around the world looking to take sabbatical leaves or experience first-hand the vagaries of tropical medicine.
2) To conduct research that is specific to the South East Zone of Nigeria, making for localized solutions to public health challenges in the developing world.
3) To conduct operational research activities to support existing programs,, which will answer specific public health research questions aimed at improving the health experience in the developing world..
4) To compete for and attract local and international grants for research and public health endeavors that will benefit the lives of populations in the developing world
5) To build in-house research capacity, train the next generation of researchers to perpetuate successes recorded and improve the quality of public health research done in the University.
6) To communicate effectively through various platforms the research evidence from the center in order to make change through policy and thus improve the lives and well-being of populations Nigeria and in the developing world.
7) In a bid to translate evidence, the center will develop and publish a quarterly research journal in public health and health policy research, in order to share with the world the unique contributions of faculty and students of the university to the body of knowledge, science and research.
PLATFORMS FOR DISSEMINATION OF EVIDENCE
1) Journal Publications
2) Discussion papers
4) Research blogs
5) Social Media handles
8) Health legislation
9) Evidence for Policy reforms
The various areas of public health study (see glossary) will form the basis for formation of research groups in the center. These broad study areas will be grouped as projects that will enable investigators conduct specific research projects within groups or with other research groups in the spirit of collaboration. Some of these group research projects at Centre for Public Health and Health Policy Research will include:
1) CPHPR Health Policy, Systems and Financing Research Group
2) CPHPR Epidemiological Research Group
3) CPHPR Environmental and Occupational Health Research Group
4) CPHPR Primary Healthcare and Health Promotion and Communication Research Group
The proposed research activities of the center will include but will not be limited to
1. Evidence generating Sessions
a. Research-in-progress meetings (RPM) – within and across groups
b. National surveys
c. State surveys
d. Disease surveillance
e. Analysis of national and local survey data
f. Report on datasets and database generation
g. Injury and RTA surveys
2. Capacity Building Sessions
a. Weekly Journal Review Club: This will take the form of presentations of current journal articles that are related to the research area of the project/group.
b. The Grand rounds: Research Grand rounds conducted monthly will provide an opportunity for the CPHPR principal investigators, post-docs, research coordinators, faculty members and guest researchers to present for discussion, results of ongoing, planned or completed research. This periodic conference can be attended by anyone in the University community and it will also be an opportunity for the center to host researchers from partner organizations, research institutes and universities’ researchers.
c. Online library
3. Communication Sessions
a. The Grand rounds: Research Grand rounds conducted monthly will provide an opportunity for the CPHPR principal investigators, post-docs, research coordinators, faculty members and guest researchers to present for discussion, results of ongoing, planned or completed research. This periodic conference can be attended by anyone in the University community and it will also be an opportunity for the center to host researchers from partner organizations, research institutes and universities’ researchers.
b. Weekly, Monthly, yearly Publications on the State of Public Health in the region and country detailing contemporary public health subjects
c. Publish Journals and Periodicals for the center
4. GRIPP (Getting Research Into Practice and Policy) Activities
a. Tobacco control Policy implementation
b. Report on Clinical Trials
5. Advocacy Activities
a. Health/Disease Awareness day commemoration or observances (For instance, the World Health, Pneumonia, Vaccines, Malaria, Tuberculosis, Diabetes, Breast Cancer, Cancers, No tobacco days)
b. Medical missions.
c. Media sessions, press briefing, health promotion.
The membership of the center will be open to members of the university community who are qualified public health practitioners and who are affiliated to the department of Community medicine or have verifiable experience in the conduct of research. The research advisory board (RAB) will be responsible for reviewing memberships of the center in view of the critical contributions, commitment and output – grants and publications that will be required for sustenance of the center. Non-affiliates to the Department of community medicine or Non-Physicians who may be involved with public health work or who may have had significant experience in a public health competence that is relevant to a project/study can be allowed membership on a case-by-case basis as agreed by the RAB. Team members will be department of community medicine residents and medical students that have shown key interest or are posted to the department. Residents of other department may be considered as team members on a case-by-case basis by the RAB.
To enhance effective delivery of research outputs and attainment of the vision of the center robust Internal and External relations would be required; they are detailed as follows
INTERNAL RELATIONS (Ethical structure, Organogram, Support Structure)
1) INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARD
The highest approval authority for studies involving human subjects to ensure best ethical standards in the conduct of human and animal studies
2) ETHICAL BOARD (INTERNAL)
In order to ensure controls are met in the conduct of research with human subjects and animals as well, the Ethical Unit will be responsible for certifying that researchers and team members meet all necessary ethical requirements and follow all guiding instructions in the conduct of research. Also, they will ensure appropriate training in research ethics and the conduct of research with human subjects for both mentors and the mentored.
1) (Control (alone) or as an Expanded Advisory board)
Vice Chancellor or a designated representative
2) Research Advisory Board (RAB)
a) Coordinator of the Center
b) Associate Coordinator
c) Principal Investigators
d) Partner organizations
3) Coordinator, Center for Public Health and Policy Research
4) Associate Director, CPHPR
5) Research Units: Each Unit will consist of
a) Principal Investigator (PI)
b) Research Investigator/ Coordinator/ Post Doc/PhD Student
c) Research Scientist/ Junior Research Investigator
1) Information Technology/ Database Officer: Will be responsible for the maintenance of functional IT tools critical to the achievement of the mission of the center. These will include (but are not restricted to) Laptops, Computers, Servers, data storage devices, multimedia devices, statistical software packages, networking facilities
2) Administrative and Finance Officer: To help with daily correspondence
3) Grants and Finance Officer: To help with grants and budget development
These will be external to the Center and will include
1) Government – Ministries, Legislature, – State and Federal,
2) Agencies – Funding, Research, Public Health, National or International
3) Private Sector – Individuals, Foundations, Corporate bodies, IT firms
4) Organized research bodies within the University
5) Organized research bodies outside the University- Nationally and Internationally.
6) Renowned Universities willing to Mentor/support/Collaborate with CPHHPR
7) Renowned Journals, Online Libraries
8) Institutional Review/ Ethical Board of UNTH and UNN
9) Professional bodies – Public health and policy related
10) Media – Broadcast, Television, Cable, Print, Social Media platforms
SOURCES OF FUNDS
1) University of Nigeria Alumni Association,
2) The Alumni of the department’s Master of Public Health degree program
3) Research Grants (local, national and international)
5) Private Sector partnerships – individual and organizations
6) Tertiary Education Trust Fund
7) Government – State and Federal government budgetary allocations
8) Strategic Partners
9) Development partners and Embassies
II. AREAS OF PUBLIC HEALTH STUDY
o Behavioral and Social Science
o Biostatistics and Informatics
o Community Health
o Environmental Health
o Global Health
o Healthy Policy and Management
o Health Promotion and Communication
o Maternal and Child Health
o Minority Health and Health Disparitie
MEMBERS OF CPHPR
S/N NAME QUALIFICATIONS DESIGNATION
1. PROF BENJAMIN SC UZOCHUKWU BMBCH, MPH, FWACP COORDINATOR
2. DR CHIMA ONOKA MBBS, FWACP, PhD ASSISTANT COORDINATOR
3. DR. EMMANUEL AGUWA MBBS, MPH, FWACP, FNPMC MEMBER
4. DR. EMMANUEL NWOBI BMBCH, MPH, FNPMC MEMBER
5. DR. UCHE EZEOKE MBBS, MPH, FWACP MEMBER
6. DR. ANIWADA MBBS, FNPMC MEMBER
7. DR. EMMANUEL OBI MBBS, FNPMC MEMBER
8. DR. IJEOMA ITANYI MBBS, MWACP AFFILIATE
9. DR. CHINYERE OKEKE MBBS, MWACP AFFILIATE
10. DR. CHINEMERE ONWULIRI MBBS AFFILIATE
11. DR UCHE OBI MBBS AFFILIATE
12. DR. CHIOMA OKAFOR MBBS AFFILIATE
1) Innocent Oweh. Nigeria: Public Varsities, Polytechnics Fail to Access N7b Tetfund Grants. Available at: http://allafrica.com/stories/201411142008.html