This is a competing continuation application for five years of additional funding for the Clinical Research Scholars Program (CRSP), a research training track for approximately nine psychiatry residents per year. CRSP was funded in 1999 in response to an RFA (MH 99-001). It provides four years of patient-oriented research training mentored by senior faculty, with protected time increasing from 17% (PGY-2) to 100% (PGY- 5) as trainees'assume more responsibility for their research. The didactic program includes a weekly seminar on research skills and design, statistics and bioethics, with additional coursework for advanced trainees. Based in a psychiatry department that is known for the depth, quality, and diversity of its faculty and academic programs, CRSP is directed by the department Chair who has extensive experience in research and research training, the residency training director, and a departmental section chief who is an active principal investigator. Thus far, 26 of 29 residents (90%) have completed the program. Among CRSP graduates, 22 of 26 (85%) have continued research training during a full-time post-residency fellowship (an almost five-fold increase vs. the four years prior to the CRSP), and 17 of the 21 graduates (81%) who have completed post-residency training have joined university faculties and are establishing track records in terms of research collaboration, funding, and publications. In addition, the CRSP has served as a catalyst for greater recruitment of medical students interested in research to the University of Pennsylvania, and has stimulated more research activity among other residents in the program. The proposed competing renewal application will support the continued, progress and growth of this mentored patient-oriented research training for the next generation of investigators. Strengths of the proposed program include: (1) a leadership team with extensive research and training experience;(2) an outstanding clinical research environment in one of the most research-intensive psychiatry departments in the country;(3) a successful program model based on the combination of intensive mentoring relationships between trainees and senior research faculty who make significant commitments of time and resources and a strong didactic program;(4) increasing success in recruiting and promoting women and minority faculty;(5) recruitment of outstanding residents, including women and under-represented minorities;(6) successful outcomes of participants in the first 9 years of funding;(7) involvement of a unique mental health bioethics program in teaching;and (8) a structured process for goal-setting and evaluation based on an Individualized Research Training Plan. In the proposed funding period we aim to introduce curriculum modifications designed to further increase scholarship and promote greater experience with preparation and submission of research grants.
Progress toward translating advances of neurosciences research into successful clinical interventions has been slowed by a striking shortage of clinical psychiatrist-investigators who are prepared to take on the challenge of high level clinical research in mental health. The Clinical Research Scholars Program (CRSP) was created in 1999 as part of a nationwide effort to begin to address the need for more psychiatrist- researchers by creating a research track within a psychiatry residency program based on intensive mentoring by highly productive clinical researchers, with protected time for active involvement of residents in clinical research projects and in didactic and skills-training activities.
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