Training in Clinical Research: Minimizing HIV Infection of the Blood Supply in Resource-Limited Countries
In North America and Europe, research in epidemiology contributes to maintaining high levels of blood safety from HIV and other transfusion-transmitted infectious diseases (TTIs), but such research is less developed in low/moderate income countries. We developed a 2-week, in-country research training to review current topics in transfusion medicine research and provide practical training in clinical research methods. The 2-week course is intended for professionals already working in blood transfusion who wish to pursue clinical research. Experts in transfusion medicine and epidemiology teach the epidemiology of HIV and other TTI's, as well as the principles of clinical research linked with readings from a textbook. Each trainee brings to the course a research question which he/she develops into a 5- or 6-page research protocol. After the course, trainees are encouraged to submit applications for funding and/or accomplish their projects with the support of their local blood bank.