Gemma Banister tells us about her experience as an HSRU summer intern.
What are you studying, what year are you in and where do you study?
I have just finished my first year of Natural Sciences (Biological) at the University of Cambridge
What is your internship?
I have been doing a 6-week summer internship at HSRU with a general aim of improving public understanding of diagnostic accuracy studies.
What have you been doing?
I have been working with another intern looking into how to share the results of diagnostic accuracy studies (DAS) with patients and the public. A DAS compares different diagnostic tests to see which is best at diagnosing a certain condition. My aim was to create a guide on how to present information about the study and its results to the participants involved in the study. This guide will be used to present the results of the EDNA study (and possibly other DAS). I have been looking at specific requirements for the EDNA study as participants in this trial all have poor vision. So far, I have been doing lots of research into the previous ways people have shared this information and evaluating them. I have also planned and run a small group discussions with a group of the public that have poor vision. We discussed examples of ways to share the results and I conducted a survey. This involved creating my own examples of how to present a study’s results. I am also looking at presenting results to the visually impaired.
Have you done any research like this before? What made it different/similar?
I have never done any research like this before. I really enjoy getting to find out so much about the different studies and trials that have taken place in HSRU and across the UK whilst doing my research.
Did you enjoy anything in particular about the experience?
I am really enjoying getting to make my project my own as I go along. Although I have a main aim, I am allowed to follow paths that interest me as I go.
What do you think you will take away from this experience? What did you learn?
I have learnt a lot about DAS whilst here and patient and public involvement. It has really made me think more about inclusion and how scientific information is often inaccessible to the general public.