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GSK is encouraging healthcare organisations to apply for a grant through its Independent Medical Education (IME) programme before 24 February 2017. This programme, now in its third year, aims to support healthcare organisations who provide education and training to healthcare professionals in Ireland, providing over €85,000 in grants to healthcare organisations in 2016.
The programme is just one part of GSK’s commitment to transforming the way it works with and supports healthcare professionals and organisations. “It continues to be very important for GSK in Ireland to support continuous education for healthcare professionals but what we have changed is “how” we approach this: To remove any potential perception of a conflict of interest, this programme means that the organisations themselves decide where and how any funding is spent”, says Martijn Akveld, Director of Medical Affairs, GSK.
For example, research has shown that a large proportion of healthcare professionals are not fully adept at teaching the correct use of inhaler devices used by patients with asthma and COPD. Therefore, in 2016 the Asthma Society of Ireland received an IME grant of €25,000 to carry out a series of educational events for healthcare professionals in primary care. The programme aims to improve skills on how to correctly and consistently demonstrate and check inhaler use with their patients. Improving this teaching skill is thought to be a key component in improving patients’ control of their respiratory disease.
Speaking about the grant, Michele Dunne, Research and Education Officer with the Asthma Society explained the benefit of the Grant to them. “By helping us run these workshops, we can offer further and up to date education about inhaler devices to HCPs which in turn benefits people with asthma who are under the care of these HCPs. With better education and support, patients are more confident about their treatment and are less likely to be symptomatic and are more likely to be able to live their life symptom-free which is our aim. Without this funding, it is unlikely that we would be able to carry out this campaign.”
Martijn Akveld, Director of Medical Affairs with GSK Ireland highlighted GSK’s continued commitment to medical education: “Supporting medical education has always and continues to be very important part of what we do at GSK. The healthcare professionals who prescribe the medicines we develop are an integral part of a patient journey. Healthcare, particularly medicine, is an innovative and fast evolving area. We want to support healthcare professionals in ensuring they can access high quality, up to date medical education to help them make the best decisions for their patients and believe in a health service that is under very tight constraints, this support is an valuable investment in Irish health and support for Irish healthcare professionals.”
Who can apply?
Healthcare service providers, professional medical societies, patient groups, medical education charities, academic institutions that train healthcare professionals and medical education companies that are accredited independent providers are encouraged to apply. Proposals must be aligned with one of GSK’s disease areas: Respiratory, Communicable diseases, Urology, Travel Health, Urology, Dermatology and Infectious Diseases.
To be eligible, applicants must demonstrate that their programmes are designed to improve healthcare professional practice and patient health in Ireland using objective data to measure these improvements. The programmes with the greatest potential to improve patient health and enable people to do more, feel better and live longer, will be prioritised.
They also must address an identified healthcare professional education need, follow innovative design, have measurable outcomes and demonstrate compliance.
The deadline for applications is 24 February 2017. Further information on how to apply for a grant along with an application form is available from www.ie.gsk.com.