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Queens University
Queens University Belfast Studentship: Developing a human rights approach to medication management in residential care for older people
This project is part of a doctoral training programme (MED-AGE) which will fund four studentships supported by the Dunhill Medical Trust. The interdisciplinary research conducted under this programme will further understanding of the importance of medicines in the lives of older people. The successful candidate will be a member of the cohort of Dunhill students funded under this programme and will be exposed to outstanding training and development opportunities. Promoting a human rights approach to living in residential care, encourages older people to be involved in when and how medications and treatments are provided and in identifying and preventing abuse associated with medication misuse. Abuse in this context includes medication errors or over sedation. There is an increasing awareness that abuse in institutional settings for older people is high and underreported (Yon et al., 2019). The extent of the problem is such that in 2002, the World Health Organization identified the mistreatment of older people living in institutional settings in almost every country which adopted the practice of institutional care (Krug et al., 2002). Abuse in residential care settings includes medication misuse. A consistent message coming from the investigation into these situations is that statutory recommendations for reform, often shaped by advocates within families and professional groups, have not been effective. Similar scenarios of abuse have been repeated across multiple settings and different times. This PhD project will contribute to an important growing body of qualitative research which examines how older adults negotiate their use of prescription medications. This mixed methods exploratory study will use coproduction methods to explore patterns of medication misuse in residential care settings and elicit perceptions of older people, care home staff and family members of how medications may be managed in this setting. Phase 1: An initial desk top review of institutional absue investigation reports and sample of registration and inspection reports will be undertaken in order to identify levels and patterns of medication abuse in registered residential homes for older people in Northern Ireland. Additionally, a scoping review of the literature will be completed. In promoting co-production, a steering group made up of key stakeholders including older person advocates from the voluntary sector will be established to oversee the project. Phase 2: These findings will be used to formulate interview schedules to explore the experiences and perceptions of older people, their family members and residential care staff through a series of individual and focus group interviews. Where possible, participants will be recruited from three residential facilities for older people: a private residential unit: a private nursing unit and a statutory residential unit.
Location: Belfast
Deadline: 11 March 2024
30th September 2024 for three years

Applicants should have a 1st or 2.1 honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject. Relevant subjects include Social work, Pharmacy, Social Sciences, Psychology, or a closely related discipline. Students who have a 2.2 honours degree and a Master’s degree may also be considered, but the University reserves the right to shortlist for interview only those applicants who have demonstrated high academic attainment to date. Applicants must have experience of qualitative research methods, demonstrate an understanding of the topic, and have experience of engaging with individuals in addressing sensitive topics.
How to Apply
https://dap.qub.ac.uk/portal/user/u_login.php Applicants must include a personal statement (1 page max) in which they should describe their interest, experience, and commitment to ageing research. You should attach this when prompted to upload a proposal.
Website:
https://dap.qub.ac.uk/portal/user/u_login.php
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