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Dr Julian O'kelly


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From post-doc to present day.
Presentation for the NIHR CLAHRC National Conference Careers Day: for postdoc research careers in the allied health professions

Published in: Healthcare
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Dr Julian O'kelly

  1. 1. Post Doc Research in Music Therapy Lessons from the Launchpad Julian O’Kelly PhD
  2. 2. A quick resume • HPCP Music Therapist: Palliative Care & Neuro-rehab • Manager • MSc Palliative Care (Kings) / PhD Mobility Fellowship (Aalborg) • P.I. for 4 studies • Conference organiser (SRR, Royal Hospital Neuro- disability, Princess Alice Hospice)
  3. 3. Post Doc Research in Arts Therapies Challenges: • Small professional & evidence base • Prevailing research methods at odds with RCT methods • Widely dispersed in different sectors = poor fit with larger funders • Competition: Arts in Health, Participatory Arts, Music Medicine Developing Opportunities: • Novel, patient centred & valued, inclusive • Emerging cross disciplinary collaborations • Cochrane collaborations, International multi-site (TIME A), NIHR support
  4. 4. Unit for Social & Community Psychiatry • Developing Music Therapy In-patient and community mental Health ‘FiGMT’ & ‘SYNCHRONY’: 5 staff (PI:Dr Catherine Carr- NIHR Clinical Lectureship & RfPB) • WHO Collaborating Centre for Mental Health Service Development, Dir. Prof Stefan Priebe • Overall 30 researchers inc. Arts Therapists
  5. 5. NIHR Post Doctoral Fellowship (PDF) • demonstrate potential as researchers but do not, as yet, have sufficient experience to be fully independent. • success in the form of outputs from doctoral and post- doctoral research (≤ 3yrs) • Similar to Clinical Lectureship, but can be 100% research , & more competitive
  6. 6. Music Therapy for Refugees with Long Term Depression and Anxiety Disorders: Development and Feasibility Trial
  7. 7. Idea
  8. 8. Idea To provide music therapy for refugees with mental disorders to reduce symptom levels and foster long- term integration BUT……. - How to deliver it in practice? - Outcomes: PTSD? Anxiety? Depression? Social integration? - Feasible with very different and heterogeneous groups? - Is it effective?
  9. 9. Consultation • Consensus: music therapy ‘makes sense’, happy to support research • Research should be: easy to understand, minimal paperwork & include reimbursment • Lived Experience Advisory Panel
  10. 10. Research Design • Informed by MRC (2011) Guidelines for piloting and feasibility testing complex interventions • WP1:Narrative Synthesis of 43 papers identified in preliminary search • WP2: Qualitative study of 3 leading organisations involved in Music Based work supporting Refugees • WP3:Wait-list control feasibility study using intervention manual (WP1&2)
  11. 11. Review 1 : Important area, novel concept/approach - though quite an intensive intervention for a small number of participants. PPI seems relevant but more management than people/pts. Training element needs clarification • Overall grade B (Meets all the assessment criteria with minor weaknesses, interview) Review 2: Range of questions on methods, statistical testing, gereralisability etc • Overall grade C (Reasonable quality applicant however does not adequately meet the criteria, reject)
  12. 12. Lessons • Importance of consultation, collaboration & peer support • Be informed by strengths / weaknesses of your discipline • Attention to detail in methodological and statistical components • Research wider funder field – MQ, Welcome, ESRC, Stroke, Parkinson's, MND, MS Charities……………
  13. 13. Post Doc Research in Music Therapy Lessons from the Launchpad Julian O’Kelly PhD