St. Claire HealthCare (SCH) has been performing research for many years. Modern day research began at SCH in 2005 with the Marty Driesler Cancer Project. In order to receive federal funds for this project, SCH acquired a federal-wide assurance that the institution will respect the rights and safety of human subjects involved in research. SCH developed its own Institutional Review Board, a group of hospital, university and community members to review the safety and ethics of all clinical research done at our hospital.
Research at SCH ranges from simple projects performed by students, to institutional participation in multi-site national research. In the past few years, SCH has participated in trials that involved waiver of informed consent, provided research education to other hospitals and organizations through conferences at the University of Kentucky, and provided community input regarding the University of Kentucky's planned tissue bank.
Currently, SCH is involved in numerous chemotherapy trials, carried out in our oncology unit; trials regarding traumatic brain injury and stroke; resident projects regarding antibiotic use in our hospital; and outpatient projects involving management of diabetes and screening for colon cancer. We are working with the University of Kentucky Center for Oral Health Research to protect the dental health of Eastern Kentucky children. These research projects do not generate revenue for the hospital, but they are an important part of our goal to provide top-quality healthcare for the people in Eastern Kentucky and educate the next generation of health professionals.