Adapting the Joint Task Force Core Competency Framework for Clinical Research Professionals: A Canadian Paediatric Research Perspective

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  • Source:
    Journal of Research Administration, v53 n2 p85-102 Fall 2022.
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    Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
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    • Abstract:
      Over the past 20 years, there has been a significant increase in the number and complexity of clinical research studies. As a result, Clinical Research Professionals (CRPs), a workforce critical to the success of clinical research, have seen commensurate increases in workload and responsibilities. Unfortunately, there has not been a parallel increase in the 'professionalization' of CRPs, and the lack of professional recognition and career development opportunities remain primary motivators for voluntary turnover in this workforce. The development of the Joint Task Force (JTF) Core Competency Framework (2014) was a seminal step in addressing these issues and has changed the dialogue within the clinical research enterprise from a focus on regulatory compliance to one of professional competency. Encouraged by peers in academic health science centres in the United States, the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) in Toronto, Canada undertook an initiative to adapt the JTF Framework to suit the Canadian context as well as incorporate the unique scientific and ethical considerations pertinent in child health research. The SickKids Clinical Research Competency Framework (SickKids CR-CF) is being used to support the professionalization of the local CRP workforce through (1) a standardized onboarding and orientation program for new hires; (2) creation of a novel, competency-based clinical research curriculum; (3) development of tools and processes to leverage the framework for professional development and career progression; and (4) job roles that are descriptive of the required competencies. The overall aim of such initiatives is to help increase participant safety, research quality and regulatory compliance as well as improve job satisfaction and institutional engagement among our clinical research workforce at SickKids.
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