Canadian Nephrology Trials Network CommitteesGraham2019-01-23T16:13:38-08:00
The Canadian Nephrology Trials Network (CNTN) is a pan-Canadian bilingual network of research nephrologists that was initially established to foster the design and conduct of multi-centre, prospective research, particularly randomized controlled trials, in nephrology. There is membership from researchers in all regions of Canada and it has extended membership to patient partners from across Canada, including Indigenous communities.
The CNTN will now include 3 working committees – Capacity Building, Communication and Engagement, and Scientific Operations – as well as a governing Executive Committee. The Executive Committee co-chairs will be responsible for reporting to the Can-SOLVE CKD Steering Committee.
CNTN members who wish to participate in a committee will be asked to submit a Request to Join in which they will need to state which committee they would like to join and why. The Can-SOLVE CKD Steering Committee will approve individuals to the committees, striving to ensure a diverse membership, based on gender, geography, research interests or lived experiences on each committee. The leads for each committee will be chosen in the same fashion.
Each committee will consist of 10-12 members and will have 2 co-leads (1 patient partner and 1 researcher). Committee members will be asked to commit to a minimum term of 1 year. Members are allowed to step down at any time, after which a call would be put out to the general membership for new committee members.
The potential administrative time commitment would be about 4 hours a month for the first 6-9 months. Initially, we will plan for 2 hour-long teleconferences per month and up to 2 hours of additional offline work such as brainstorming or reviewing and commenting on documents. This will be revised as each committee defines its work plan and there may be additional time required to execute the work plan.
Each committee will be responsible for developing, with the help of the CNTN project coordinator, a work plan and meeting schedule. The work plan will include deliverables for 3, 6 and 12 months. Each member of the committee should have equal say in what is done and assist with the execution of the work plan. The work plan should include a list of assets, potential committees or groups with which they could collaborate and groups who may be doing similar work or may be interested in the work. Examples include: Scientific Operations Committee engaging with the Capacity Building Committee (peer review would be a training opportunity for junior investigators), and Communications and Engagement Committee (peer review sessions would be an opportunity to get investigators and patient partners involved or keep them updated on research).
The CNTN project coordinator will be present at all committee meetings as note-taker and administrative support.
The following committee descriptions were developed from the September 2018 visioning workshop report. They are a guide to help members determine which committee they may want to join.
Capacity Building (Training and Development) Committee
Outcomes: Increased number of patient-oriented research ideas developed, increased number of people trained to conduct the research (study coordinators and investigators), increased enrollment with the help of patient advocates
This group will be responsible for developing a work plan to resource a comprehensive training program for CNTN. The committee will determine current training gaps and identify resources for training. The committee will liaise with the Scientific Operations committee to facilitate learning opportunities around the review sessions. It will also liaise with the Communication and Engagement committee to ensure that new CNTN members (and their staff) are aware of the available training resources. Members of this committee may wish to mentor junior investigators or patient partners, which would require an additional time commitment.
Communication and Engagement Committee
Outcomes: Increased engagement with stakeholders; Involve patients as more than just study participants
This group will be responsible for developing a work plan to increase the number of people involved in nephrology clinical trials in Canada. This engagement should be a two-pronged approach – with researchers and non-researchers. In order to build capacity for an increased number of clinical trials, the number of people conducting research (investigators, study coordinators) needs to increase. Part of the committee’s work will focus on encouraging new physicians to join CNTN and train as researchers. The committee will support the engagement of non-academic clinicians as site investigators and will work with funding agencies to increase visibility of CNTN. It will also connect with patient partners to support their training as advocates and research partners. This committee will work with the Capacity Building committee to forward new recruits to the appropriate training resources. Members will be encouraged to spend time engaging stakeholders in their community and workplace.
Scientific Operations Committee
Outcomes: Increase quality of research proposals submitted for funding and post-review support
This group will be responsible for developing a work plan for the review of investigator-initiated clinical trial proposals. The committee will determine the metrics of success, how to collect these metrics, and set goals for the coming year. Members of this committee will conduct peer review, via email, of submitted proposals throughout the year and at in-person review sessions. They will likely liaise semi-annually with the Can-SOLVE CKD Research Operations Committee (ROC) and Knowledge User and Translation (KU/KT) committee. The KU/KT committee will be a valuable resource to assist investigators in moving knowledge into action by thinking about knowledge translation from an early point in their proposal. The committee will liaise with the other committees since the peer review sessions will be excellent training and engagement opportunities for new investigators.
The executive committee will consist of the leads (1 patient partner and 1 researcher) from each of the working committees (Capacity Building, Communications and Engagement and Scientific Operations), 6 CNTN Members at large and 2 non-voting members: the CNTN project coordinator and a Can-SOLVE CKD Leadership Team Representative. The co-chairs of the executive committee will be rotated between the 12 voting members of the executive committee. The co-chairs will be a patient partner and a researcher serving staggered 12-month terms. Please refer to the Executive Committee Terms of Reference for further details.