Thursday, March 12, 2020

Working Together in Times of Change

Today, we brought over 40 MHRI managers from across the system for a virtual MHRI Managers' meeting.  Although this meeting was originally scheduled to a full day, in person quarterly meeting, we exemplified the need to stay flexible as our world around us changes due to the pandemic.

As MHRI leaders, we spent much of the time getting updates on COVID-19 and were particularly thankful to have MedStar experts, such as Dr. Maria Ellen Ruiz, Assistant Section Chief of Infectious Disease at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, and Bill Sheahan, corporate Vice President and Exec Director for MedStar Telehealth who were able to give us updates and information we need to lead research at MedStar Health.  Among the important pieces of information was regulatory and compliance considerations for research that may change or be disrupted do to COVID-19 and examples of what other organizations are doing.

We also spent time to discuss other important updates, such as pertinent human resource activities, finances, operational continuity, and budgeting.  We even had a great lecture by a key investigator lead, Dr. Kristen Miller on a great example of implementation science and use of technology in a clinical setting (partially highlighted in a recent blog posting).  

Lastly, we discussed our coordination with Georgetown University. Over the last several months, MHRI collaboration with members of the Georgetown research community has accelerated, including the creation of several new joint policies. For example, last month Mary Anne Hinkson, MHRI’s Vice President of Research Operations, brought together a group of research coordinators at our Hyattsville offices. This diverse group, from across services line and from both MedStar and Georgetown, were here to discuss a new policy that is being developed (see pictures below).  Well, with so many potential changes that COVID-19 could effect, we are very actively working to make sure any new information and/or research guidance is joint with Georgetown whenever possible.

I want to thank all the MHRI Managers for their leadership in a time of change and encourage all MHRI associates to touch base with their local leader for the most up-to-date information and ongoing re-assessment of your research activities.

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