Medical Students in ME Research


Introduction

Medical students often learn very little about the disease myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME).
What they do learn is out-of-date and based on a page that is based on flawed research. This means that students leave medical training ill-prepared for understanding or treating ME.
By participating in the actual biomedical research they not only learn far more about the disease but are also given the potential to find treatment or cause. This helps the student, the university and, ultimately, patient .



The Team


Medical students from the UEA would intercalate and assist in the research supervised by the project manager.



Project Description

Our objective is to sponsor atleast two medical students per year. The students will be attached to one of the projects being funded by the charity.

They will be supervised by professors involved in the research and learn about the disease as well as performing vital roles in the research itself. This may also involve seeing patients.

By intercalating in their fourth year they gain valuable insights into the disease as well as returning to their studies with more confidence and ability to educate other students about ME.

We have had great success with our two recent intercalating fourth year medical students Navena Navaneetharaja and Bharat Harbham.

Navena spent over three months at Cornell University in New York with Professor Maureen Hanson and Bharat has been working under the guidance of Professor Angela Vincent in Oxford.

Navena and Bharat have been of great help to the IiME funded PhD student Daniel Vipond and all this work underpins the next phases of our continuing project to establish a Centre of Excellence for ME and a strategic range of biomedical research into this disease.

Aim 1

To educate medical students about ME and understand patients' experiences.

Activities

» By being closely involved in the project and being supervised by experienced researchers they will gain valuable knowledge about the disease.

Reports back from the students,their supervisors and university appearing in the charity's newsletter, Journal and participating in the charity's annual research conference/meeting

Aim 2

To increase and enhance the research into ME being undertaken

Activities

» By having students actively involved in the research we are able to perform more research or extend existing research due to the additional resources

By status reports from the research project and project supervisor description of the enhancements to the project and the achievements made

Impact

Better education for medical students.

Better treatment of patients with ME.

Better outcomes for research.

Increased research possibilities.

Possible increased interest in more researchers entering this field for their careers.

Reporting

Via status updates, newsletter, Journal articles and reports at the annual conference organised by the charity. Also via DVD of the conference which is available later.

Beneficiaries
  • Medical students
    • Benefit from more exposure to high-quality state-of-the-art research into ME. Increased understanding of this enigmatic neurological disease
  • ME Patients
    • By having more medical studetns interested in the research then patients will receive better qualified doctors and healthcare staff
  • Carers and families of people with ME
  • Research teams
  • Universities
  • The Public


Funding

Funding is via supporters - the Let's Do It For ME Team, patients, carers, friends. We also entered once for the Big Give Christmas Challenge


PhDs and Students Funded by Invest in ME (Research) at our IIMEC10 conference

References