Our Learners Need That “BERD” In The Hand 

Clinical and Translational Science: For the clinical educator, more questions than answers are raised by this survey data from mostly high-profile US institutions with Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA).  CTSA Consortium institutions were surveyed regarding the biostatistics, epidemiology, and research design (BERD) programs which supported these teams.  There was wide variability amongst the programs, but some trends were apparent.  The median number of BERD FTEs was about 3.0, with a dominant representation of biostatisticians.  The BERD units did a large amount of consulting with both junior and senior investigators, and contributed to multiple grant applications and manuscripts.  “It is unknown how many of these consultations were for students, residents, or fellow; our experience is that access to CTSA-supported consulting by these groups varies across the CTSA consortium.”  For learners expected to produce high-quality scholarly activity, access to BERD specialists is needed, and often not attainable without significant cost.–Laura Willett, MD

Rahbar MH, Dickerson AS, Ahn C, Carter RE, Hessabi M, Lindsell CJ, Nietert PJ, Oster RA, Pollock BH, Welty LJ. Characteristics of Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Research Design Programs in Institutions With Clinical and Translational Science Awards. Acad Med. 2016 Aug

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