Data Management Strategies on the World Stage

September 20, 2019

This past week, some of our staff have been in Vancouver, Canada, for the annual REDCap Conference, sharing ideas with delegates from around the world. As the conference has just come to a close, they checked in with us to share how everything had gone.

REDCap, or Research Electronic Data Capture, is a software platform which MRINZ uses to manage its studies of all sizes. Most notably, the team have been using REDCap to manage the New Zealand Health Research Council Funded PIPPA Tamariki Study. The study involves thousands of newborn children and their families across the first six years of their life. The management of this study involves many complex components including automated surveys, randomisation to treatment groups, and both digital and in-person enrolment. Nick Shortt and Luisa Diputado, our two in-house REDCap data managers shared their work on this particular study to the conference this week. There was a lot of interest in their work and we couldn’t be more impressed!

One of the cornerstones of data management at MRINZ is the security of patient and participant data. Our Clinical Data Manager, John Martindale, joined our contingent in Canada to share his work entitled “Evolution of a risk-based strategy for REDCap system validation”. John’s work is around the most effective and efficient ways of keeping the systems up-to-date, re-evaluating the security and safety of updates, and enabling progress to happen without compromising the integrity of the systems.

The team have reported that they have had a phenomenal time in Canada, and are excited to come back and put what they have learned to good use. Conferences are an important part of any profession, allowing people to mix with others at all levels of their respective fields, and to learn from one another. Although data management isn’t seen as the most exciting area of science, the contribution our data management team make to our organisation is incredibly valuable, and we wouldn’t be able to function without them. We are excited to see what new lessons they bring back with them! The next REDCap Conference is scheduled for 2020 in Boston, where MRINZ hopes to continue its presence.