UCD and LauraLynn, announce ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ alongside Minister for Higher Education, Minister Mitchell O’Connor

22 Nov
2018

University College Dublin (UCD) and LauraLynn, Ireland’s only children’s hospice, announce signing a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’, a collaboration which will provide specialised research into the understudied healthcare field of paediatric palliative care.

The three-year collaboration between the UCD School of Psychology and LauraLynn Children’s Hospice, aims to develop teaching and research practices in paediatric palliative care.

To date in Ireland, formal links between children’s palliative care service providers and university centres have been lacking and there has been no such partnership focused on the research of children’s palliative care through practical approaches. This has resulted in limited services-based research and teaching opportunities, with the result of an under-performing sector in terms of evidence-based interventions and service evaluations. The purpose of this memorandum is to address this shortfall.

The aims of the collaboration are:
– To create and support teaching and research opportunities in both organisations
– To enhance and facilitate service-based research in children’s palliative care
– To support the research and teaching strategies of both organisations
– To foster national and international cooperation and collaboration

Dr. Aidan Mc Kiernan, Principal Clinical Psychologist (Specialist) and Clinical Lead for Research at LauraLynn, states; “The research partnership between LauraLynn and UCD is a significant step forward for the field of children’s palliative care. As a specialised area of practice, paediatric palliative care is relatively new and one that requires further advancement. The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between LauraLynn and UCD is a significant milestone for paediatric palliative care here in Ireland”.

Minister Mary Mitchell O Connor, Minister for Higher Education states; “Through research we have the possibility of gaining further knowledge, allowing us to advance and implement best practices. This partnership between UCD and LauraLynn Children’s Hospice will allow for greater research to be conducted in the area of children’s palliative care, improving our services nationally while also allowing us to contribute to research internationally. There is great scope for research in this healthcare field and I am proud to support this partnership.”

Suzanne Guerin, Associate Professor with UCD School of Psychology states; “Children’s palliative care in Ireland is an under-funded and often, a misunderstood area of care. As a relatively new field, opportunities for research in this area are extensive and we are excited for what this collaboration can bring. We are looking forward to working closely with LauraLynn over the next three years to help further develop knowledge within paediatric palliative care and educate students for future success within this specialised field”.

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