By Sarah Liptrott Chairperson Nursing Group Research Committee, IEO, European Institute of Oncology IRCCS, Milan, Italy
The Research Committee aims to develop research and promote awareness of research activities and facilitate / support active participation in research by the EBMT Nurses Group members. Transplant nursing is a highly specialised field and the importance of contributing to research in this field is paramount. Sounds like a daunting task. When I applied to the Research Committee, I had limited research experience but I was passionate about nursing care in the transplant setting and had many questions I hoped could be answered by research. After being accepted into the committee, I realised I had joined with a group of clinical nurses and research specialists from different countries with a range of different experiences and this was where I really began to grow as a researcher. The committee brings together nurses with expertise in a variety of research methodologies as well as interest in differing topics – allowing us all to learn new things. I was able to participate in studies using questionnaires – this was all new to me but I learned the who, what, why and how of questionnaires and grew in confidence, whilst being able to use my new skills and knowledge in my own clinical area. The committee provides a positive environment that encourages the development of research projects and also with non-committee members who work with us to develop their research ideas. Similarly, this gives us the possibility to learn more from nurses who are specialists in different transplant related subjects. This means we have a committee that is responsive to our members interests as well. We discuss and debate our projects in a monthly telephone conference and meet face to face at least three times a year.
There is a lot to be done, but it is not all work though. During my time on the committee I have completed my PhD and have had practical and emotional support from the group. My Research Committee colleagues are also my extended family going through love and life together – you can’t ask for anything more.