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Cliona McRobert

Keele University


Having graduated with a BSc (Hons) Physiotherapy from Teesside University in 2006, I have worked as a physiotherapist in the Republic of Ireland and England in both Primary & Secondary Care settings. I am passionate about optimising patient care and improving outcomes for patients with musculoskeletal disorders within the NHS. I enjoy engaging in critical thinking and debate about the clinical and organisational challenges in current musculoskeletal practice including the barriers to uniform evidence-based practice.  

Funded by the NIHR as part of the Clinical Academic Training (CAT) Pathway, I was awarded a Masters of Research (MRes) in Health Sciences with distinction from the University of Liverpool in 2011.

Keen to continue my learning and development as a trainee clinical academic, I am a current PhD student at the Arthritis Research UK, Primary Care Centre, Keele University. My PhD, entitled ‘Musculoskeletal Shoulder Disorders: Which Treatment for Whom’ aims to identify patient factors thought to moderate response to three commonly used primary care treatments: (i) education, advice and pain relief, (ii) physiotherapy and (iii) joint injection. I was awarded a NIHR School for Primary Research (SPCR) PhD Studentship in 2013 for this PhD under the academic supervision of Prof. Danielle van der Windt (Professor of Epidemiology), Prof. Elaine Hay (Professor of Community Rheumatology) and Dr. Jonathan Hill (Arthritis Research UK Lecturer).   

My PhD will use systematic review, expert consensus methods, conjoint analysis, and moderation analysis to build profiles of the likely best responder to the above-mentioned clinical treatments for musculoskeletal shoulder disorders. It is hoped that these profiles will inform the development of a brief clinical treatment decision tool and later a model for the stratified management of musculoskeletal shoulder disorders in primary care.

I am particularly interested in the areas of clinical expertise, conjoint analysis (a form of discrete choice experiment), clinical prognosis, moderation of treatment effect and stratified care. 

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