1. Can the Division of Clinical Research (DCR) help me learn what I need to know as an investigator or study coordinator?

The DCR's Clinical Research Education Unit (CREU) works collaboratively with other hospital departments to create lectures and courses for investigators, fellows, study coordinators, research nurses and other study staff.

Find information on current educational offerings and register for courses online.


2. Can the DCR help me translate my interesting clinical question into an active research project?

Faculty from the DCR can help during the incubation period, offering support as you articulate your idea, refine your hypothesis and seek funding. Our biostatisticians are also available to provide initial consultations on study design. Staff can also assist with:

  • Reviewing proposals
  • Identifying sources of potential funding
  • Developing and negotiating a budget
  • Understanding Institutional Review Board (IRB) and regulatory processes
  • Recruiting study subjects

Request a DCR consultation


3. I can't afford a full-time study coordinator. Can I get help without having to hire someone myself?

Study coordinators from the DCR are available on a fee-for-service basis to help manage your institutional review board (IRB) submission and day-to-day protocol activities. The DCR also provides project management support and can expand coordinator support during concentrated periods of recruitment or site visits.

Request DCR services


4. Can I get help identifying specific patient populations?

The Research Patient Data Registry (RPDR) is a central clinical data repository consisting of patient demographic data, diagnoses, procedure and inpatient pharmacy data, and laboratory pathology and radiology reports. The RPDR can be queried to assess the feasibility of conducting a clinical research study and the availability of patient populations. With IRB approval, users can access specific patient and provider information.

Click here to learn more about RPDR (Partners log in required).


5. What is RSVP for Health?

RSVP for Health—the Research Study Volunteer Program—is a database of people who are interested in participating in clinical research studies. The database is available to investigators at Mass General for recruiting purposes.

For more information, visit the RSVP website


6. What if I am interested in research on health services or disease management?

For selected common diagnoses, the DCR works with primary and specialty care physicians in conjunction with institutional quality improvement initiatives to:

  • Develop important hypothesis-driven clinical research questions
  • Identify patterns of care and individual variation
  • Supply computer applications that link clinical data, care guidelines and data for research
  • Support rigorous evaluation of operational programs

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