Multicentre research provides advantages over single-centre research by maximising available patient numbers while pooling varied expertise and resources available across different participating investigators and sites. The increased complexity of multicentre regulatory approvals, communication and study management, can be mitigated by the formation of a research network where multicentre efforts move from ad hoc, single projects to formalised ongoing collaboration. Network research helps prioritise research efforts and importantly fosters the development of a collaborative track record in terms of research expertise, research capacity and grant success. It also has the potential to rapidly change patient care across many hospitals as research results will be more generalizable and definitive. This paper sets out the key elements of network research, its benefits and possible challenges drawing on the example of PREDICT (Paediatric Research in Emergency Departments International Collaborative) an established paediatric emergency research network in Australia and New Zealand.
- emergency medicine