On 11 March 2018 a satellite meeting was held to explore opportunities and mechanisms to foster and strengthen linkages between CISMAC partner scientists. 18 participant from 9 partner institutions in India, Nepal, Pakistan, Uganda, Zambia and Norway participated.
Principal Investigators from CISMAC’s Zinc-Sepsis study (https://cismac.uib.no/zinc-sepsis), Sudha Basnet and Nitya Wadhwa, gave some insight into their routines and experience of working in a multi-center, multi-country RCT. Many other researchers shared their experience on previous and ongoing multi-center studies with an emphasis on successful measures and challenges of collaborative work. This led to the question on how this could be related to CISMAC’s current and future activities. In smaller groups and in a plenary discussion, specific opportunities were discussed on how researchers from different CISMAC partner institutions can exchange and interact at appropriate steps along the research cycle, i.e. from generating ideas, to developing protocols and tools, through implementation and data analysis, dissemination and translation of results into policy and practice, to other areas of collaboration, such as doing systematic reviews.
The expert Dr. Simon Lewin from the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organisation of Care satellite (http://epoc.cochrane.org/norwegian-satellite) in our partner institution in Oslo, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, gave an introduction to systematic reviews in general and his work at the EPOC specifically, leading into a fruitful discussion with the CISMAC researchers.
According to its midway evaluation, CISMAC sets out an impressive range and quality of research activities and contributes to significant capacity strengthening. To build on this, CISMAC is committed to promote horizontal linkages that stimulate interaction between researchers across partner institutions in order to create a sustainable CISMAC consortium capable of conducting cutting-edge intervention and implementation research on maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) even beyond the RCN funding period.