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My experience as the inaugural Professor William Campbell Scholarship Student for summer 2017

on Thursday, 04 January 2018. Posted in Latest News, Medical Research

Katie Bailey

William Campbell Scholarship Student for summer 2017


Katie Bailey and Professor William Campbell 2017I was honoured to be selected as the inaugural Professor William Campbell Scholarship Student for summer 2017.

Under the guidance of my supervisor Mr Michael Sugrue, Surgeon, I carried out an 8 week research project in Letterkenny University Hospital. This was part of a dynamic, exciting and incredible 8 week research experience. Not only did I enhance my research skills but interacted with many disciplines. Working with other summer research students in the Breast Unit at Letterkenny was fantastic and the programme was so well supported by Alison Johnston and the wonderful staff at the Unit.

In carrying out a meta-analysis and systematic review on readmissions to hospital post-appendectomy we selected a line of research that was relevant not only to Letterkenny University Hospital but also to acute hospitals globally. The lifetime risk of appendicitis is 7.5% making it the most common cause of acute abdominal pain requiring surgical intervention.

With the help of the team at the Donegal Clinical Research Academy I was guided in carrying out a meta-analysis that adheres to the PRISMA guidelines. Over the 8 weeks I gained a depth of understanding of the importance of the hierarchy of evidence in order to use research to answer questions. Our study identified the average rate of readmission to hospital following surgical intervention for appendicitis, and also identified factors that increased risk of readmission.

I had the opportunity to present my results at the Letterkenny Symposium and at the Waterford Surgical meeting this year, where my work received a very positive response. In May 2018 I will be presenting my work internationally at the European Congress of Trauma and Emergency Surgery in Valencia, Spain.

It has truly been a privilege to have carried out this research project funded by the Professor William Campbell Student Scholarship, and I would like to extend my gratitude to both Professor Campbell and the entire team at the DCRA.

What an honour not just to work in research for the summer but to have, forever in my young career, the noted support of a Nobel Laureate in Medicine and Physiology.

Katie Bailey
Medical Student
University College Dublin

For applications for 2018 see HERE