Several orthopaedic associations have developed tools and programs for young clinician scientists.
The following programs can help young investigators improve their chances for success in securing funding:
Clinician Scientist Development Program (CSDP)
The CSDP is a comprehensive program jointly sponsored by the AAOS, the Orthopaedic Research Society, and the Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF) for residents interested in careers as clinician scientists. During the 1.5 day workshop, participants learn about “Navigating the National Institutes of Health (NIH),” “Establishing a Mentor,” and “Grantwriting 101.” Although the 2008 CSDP application process is closed, information and application materials for 2009 and upcoming workshops will be available online next summer at http://www.aaos.org/member/csdp/csdp.asp
Young Investigator Initiative
This United States Bone and Joint Decade (USBJD) initiative allows early-career clinician scientists to work with experienced researchers to secure funding and acquire skills important for their careers. They maintain their mentor relationships until their applications are funded. Information about the 2008 programs will soon be available online at http://www.usbjd.org
Timeline for clinician scientists
The AAOS and the OREF have developed an interactive timeline for clinician scientists for all available grants. According to Regis J. O’Keefe, MD, who helped develop this unique program, “The AAOS/OREF timeline is critical because it defines all of the awards available for career development.” The OREF Web site (www.oref.org) has more information.
AAOS/OREF Traveling Fellowship Program
This program matches a career clinician scientist early in his or her career with one who is established and experienced. Each year, two applicants may receive up to $10,000 to defray the travel expenses to visit mentors of their own choosing. Kevin J. Bozic, MD, MBA, said that the program “provided me with valuable training and helped me develop and write an NIH grant proposal ... and helped me pursue my goal of becoming an independently funded health services researcher.” More information is available on the AAOS Web site (www.aaos.org).