Current visiting times

After suspending visiting earlier in the year, we are now able to offer limited visiting to some wards at the discretion of the nurse in-charge.”

Read more on visiting times...

Messages for loved ones and keeping in touch

We recognise the impact that a long stay in hospital can have on families and the importance of maintaining strong communication.  Our ward staff are keeping in touch with patients’ next of kin directly and our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) can help pass on personal messages from family and friends.

Read more information about messages for loved ones…

Current visiting times

After suspending visiting earlier in the year, we are now able to offer limited visiting to some wards at the discretion of the nurse in-charge.”

Read more on visiting times...

Messages for loved ones and keeping in touch

We recognise the impact that a long stay in hospital can have on families and the importance of maintaining strong communication.  Our ward staff are keeping in touch with patients’ next of kin directly and our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) can help pass on personal messages from family and friends.

Read more information about messages for loved ones…

During your stay in hospital you will meet a number of different members of staff.  All members of staff wear name badges, but if you are not sure who someone is or what they do, please feel free to ask them to introduce themselves and explain what they do. 

If you have any questions about your treatment, please ask a doctor or a nurse.

There are lots of opportunities for you to get involved with the Trust, from volunteering to attending our public meetings, our Annual General Meeting or our hospital open day which is held every year.

Clinical Academic Hub

Last updated: 26 July 2022

Chantel Oster   headshots 1   formal

Chantel Ostler, consultant clinical academic physiotherapist

Research Team group photo

Excited for the Clinical Hub at PHU to launch!

Rosalynn Austin   headshots 001  formal

Rosalynn Austin, specialist research nurse & clinical doctoral research fellow


Welcome to the Portsmouth University Hospitals NHS Trust's clinical academic hub!

The clinical academic hub aims to support nursing, midwifery and allied health professional (AHP) clinicians who are undertaking research within the Trust. This may include colleagues on research training pathways, those interested in using research to improve clinical care and services we provide to our patients, as well as those who manage clinical academic staff. 

Led by Chantel Ostler, consultant clinical academic physiotherapist and Rosalynn Austin, principal clinical academic nurse researcher, the hub team can support you with advice about clinical academic careers and link you with peer support and mentorship from other clinical academics both internally and externally. In addition, they can support you with applications for research funding and fellowships.

The hub is also a great place to start if you would like to know more about clinical academic roles in general and how you could start to get involved in research in your clinical area. 

A clinical academic is someone who splits their role between working clinically and undertaking research or improvement work. Their work is aimed at investigating new ways to deliver care and improve outcomes for the people they treat. 

Working within the NHS, clinical academics help to develop and lead relevant research, that is grounded in investigating real problems experienced in clinical practice. In addition, they also act as a bridge between the NHS and universities and collaborate on research and build teams whose members have the right knowledge and skills to answer key patient centred questions.

Clinical academic’s also support their department’s clinical team members and encourage them to become more involved in research and improvement work. They are innovative and creative with the skills for quality improvement (QI) and audit work, as well as research projects. By utilising these approaches clinical academics help create and build a culture of research within health services, advancing care and improving outcomes for patients.

 A clinical academic career is typically defined by a series of training opportunities to help develop research and leadership skills. To get started on a clinical academic career pathway, several options are available.

  • Clinical academic/ research taster sessions - spend time with a clinical academic who will introduce you to the research and innovation team, share elements of both their clinical and academic roles and where possible arrange to have you observe research in action.
  • Research Internships – Research internships offer an introduction to all aspects and roles across clinical academic research from trial design, data management through to undertaking practical research in a clinical environment. Across the Wessex region (Hampshire, IOW, Wiltshire and Dorset), both Health Education England (HEE) and the Wessex Applied Research Collaborative (ARC) offer the following schemes:

  • NIHR/ HEE ICA programme - The Health Education England (HEE) / National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Integrated Clinical Academic (ICA) Programme provides research training (Masters, PhD and post doc) awards for health and social care professionals, excluding doctors and dentists, who wish to develop careers that combine research and research leadership with continued practice and professional development. These include:
  • Pre-doctoral clinical academic fellowship (PCAF)
  • Clinical doctoral research fellowship (CDRF)
  • Clinical and senior clinical lectureships

If you are already further along the career pathway and are undertaking or have completed a PhD the team would be happy to meet with you to talk about next steps, whether that is applying for a bridging scheme, or in developing a post-doctoral fellowship or research grant application.

Post doc fellowships (clinical and senior clinical lectureships) are available via the NIHR ICA programme, as well as ARC Wessex and some medical research charities, but are very competitive and need planning and support. We can help you to take this often challenging but highly rewarding next step.

  • Bridging schemes - Applying for these fellowships can take a lot of time. Bridging schemes are a way of providing support to clinical academics to build on their previous academic training and develop proposals for a pre or post-doctoral award and take the next step on their clinical academic pathway. The following links can provide more information.


The clinical academic hub at PHU runs a peer support network linking clinical academics working across the Trust together.

Please contact us via email:,  if you would like to get involved, or follow us on twitter @CAhubPHU to find out more about what we do.

We can also provide one-to-one sessions to discuss how to get started, or to think about the next steps in your current pathway. We hold a monthly drop-in session on the second Thursday of the month in the Education centre. The team will be available to answer all questions related to clinical academic careers, research or improvement. The dates and times can be found below in our upcoming events section.

If you are a manager who supports a clinical academic, or someone who is interested in this career pathway, we are happy to meet with you to think about how this role fits within your department or team, how the roles are funded and what to expect.

 A clinical academic within the team can bring added value by supporting your quality improvement work, working in partnership with your patients, disseminating research findings, sharing their learning with the wider team and researching important questions from clinical practice. 

Navigating this career pathway is challenging and we can offer advice and guidance about what is possible. Contact us at:, for more information.

Our 'Evaluating the evidence' podcast series discusses educational hot topics from dementia to medicines management - keep up with the series below!



PHU 'reviewing the evidence' series: Lotus Unit Journal Club

PHU Clinical Academic's podcast:


PHU 'reviewing the evidence' series: Medicines Management


PHU 'reviewing the evidence' series: Dementia

PHU 'reviewing the evidence' series: Deconditioning

Rosalynn Austin: clinical academic nurse researcher, specialist research nurse and clinical academic research fellow

I’ve been involved in research for over 10 years, but until 2016, I primarily delivered research projects created by others. Since starting my PhD (Clinical Academic Research Fellow), I have lead on my own cardiology research project here at PHU. Known as SYMPACT, my project is looking at understanding the symptoms people with heart failure experience and if those symptoms make it harder for them to manage their illness. I believe this knowledge will help improve the patients experience and their healthcare. The project has enabled me to link with other nurses, midwives and allied health professionals (AHPs) who have successfully incorporated research into their clinical roles.

With the support of our chief nurse, Liz Rix, the director of nursing, Clare Meachin and the executive director of research, Anoop Chauhan; Chantal Ostler and I have been tasked with highlighting and advancing nurses, midwives, and AHPs, who are carrying out research created here at PHU. I’m looking forward to finding out more about the research based at PHU. I hope to inspire and develop a program of projects which will align with our trust values and investigate the needs of the people who depend on our hospital. With Chantal, I will also be helping to develop the ‘clinical academic’ role here at PHU.

Contact: or

Twitter: @RosalynnAustin


Chantel Ostler: consultant clinical academic physiotherapist

I have always been interested in improving the care we provide to our patients. Early in my career I was regularly involved in audits and service improvement projects. I loved working with patients in the prosthetic service, listening to their views about our service and coming up with ideas together for how we could improve their experience and care.

In 2005 I undertook a masters degree which spiked my interest in research as an improvement tool. On completion, I undertook a role with Solent NHS trust as their lead research clinician which enabled me to gain a further understanding around meaningful patient engagement and how to really make research projects achievable and useful in NHS settings.

In 2018 I was approached by the University of Southampton to be part of a team exploring how digital technologies could improve access to prosthetic services in Cambodia. This partnership with the university led to a clinical academic role, with my time split between treating patients at the Portsmouth Enablement centre and undertaking clinically relevant prosthetic research. Being based in the NHS has enabled me to link the two roles, bringing more research opportunities into the department and supporting my colleagues to develop their research understanding and skills. This role also led to funding for my PhD, exploring how to make outcome measurement work in clinical practice.  I now have this amazing opportunity, as a consultant clinical academic alongside Rosalynn Austin, and with the support of Liz Rix and Anoop Chauhan, to help PHU build career pathways for other clinical academics. A more robust pathway can enable staff interested in research to explore this fascinating field and ultimately drive research activity which addresses the needs of our services and our patients.

Contact: /

Twitter: @research_agent

To find out more about some of our other clinical academics here at PHU, visit our staff spotlight page and follow us on twitter @CAhubPHU


Emma Lane: senior cardiac physiologist

I am starting the fourth year of my part-time PHD at the University of Portsmouth and also work as a senior cardiac physiologist at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust (PHU).

My PHD study is called GLASSheart and is investigating heart function by using non-standard echocardiography (echo) and blood results in patients who have been admitted with sepsis or septic shock to the intensive care unit (ICU) at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham. Patients participating in the study have an echo and bloods done on admission, and during their three-month follow-up. My study sits within the National Institute of Health’s research portfolio.

Although significantly delayed due to covid, it has been fantastic to start meeting and recruiting patients and follow them along the GLASSheart journey. Seeing patients progress from being seriously ill in ICU, to walking through my clinic door with a smile, may well be the best part of research! Working with the research staff at PHU has been incredibly rewarding and I’m not sure how I could have done it without their support.

Research patient from GLASSheart said; “Getting involved in research is one way I can help the NHS. Research is so vital for us to gain a better understanding of medical conditions. We always need to keep finding out and discovering new treatments.

“By taking part in the GLASSheart study, I hope I can help clinicians gain a further understanding of sepsis in the heart and its impact on patients and their quality of life. I would recommend anyone who is able to, to get involved in research.”

On what will make the study a success, Emma said that identifying heart failure early in sepsis and septic shock could help clinicians consider alternative treatments for patients. This study lays the foundation of knowledge, it doesn’t look to change the treatments. The legacy of sepsis and septic shock on heart function is currently unknown, however the GLASSheart study could help identify how patients could benefit from post-discharge cardiac involvement and if early involvement might help improve their quality of life.

She added, “I am excited to see the results of my GLASSheart study and how it could improve patient outcomes. A multi-centre study in the future could help build on findings, and something that I would love to be involved in! It would be great to see a wider range of clinical staff getting involved in research and I would love to include research as part of my future role after completing my PhD.”

Thank you to Ambu ECG electrodes and Cardiac Remotes Ltd who have kindly supported and funded the additional research costs.

How to contact Emma:
: @em_echo


Ruth Reeve: sonographer/diagnostic radiographer

After qualifying as a diagnostic radiographer in 2010, I began my journey into research by undertaking a Master’s in medical ultrasound. Following my studies, I wanted to find out more about gastrointestinal ultrasound, particularly pancreatic cystic lesions. Alongside this, I wanted to do further research into patients who were closely observing and monitoring their own condition and their experience. This led to my successful bid to receive predoctoral and doctoral research funding.

I am now working towards a PhD which aims to understand and identify improvements for the patients that I work with. My PhD has provided me with a number of fantastic opportunities to engage in research in my area of interest as well as the wider radiography and ultrasound workforce. Through sharing the work I have done to date, it’s been really encouraging to see how much interest this has generated with colleagues. I am therefore really keen to promote research and improve engagement within clinical departments, but also the role of clinical academics which has led to some of my more recent publications.

As highlighted in my most recent article, the future for clinical academics is an exciting but uncertain one. With my PhD fellowship due to end in 2022, and with the leadership skills I have gained, I hope that the opportunity to combine research into my clinical role at PHU comes to fruition and I can continue to help improve patient experiences and encourage research engagement locally and nationally.

Recent Publications:

Radiography online: A paper written with other Radiographers describing the challenges and benefits of developing clinical academics within the profession. The article hopes to encourage others to engage in research to benefit patients and services. 

Twitter journal club: A paper analysing a twitter journal club for ultrasound practitioners. The journal club was the first one for the British medical ultrasound society, and discusses the points raised and the success of this type of continued professional development for ultrasound operators. The paper aims to promote further engagement with research online. 

Radiography journal podcast: As a journal editor I have created this podcast to discuss publications, as well as specific conversations with published authors about their research. By understanding and discussing how their work applies to the wider radiography profession and patients, the podcast aims to promote research engagement within the radiography community. I hope to produce a further podcast for the community shortly. 


Twitter: @ReeveRuth


Beth Giddons: research facilitator

I am a research facilitator based at the Portsmouth Research Hub and I provide day-to-day trial management for COVID-19 booster vaccine trials.

I am responsible for ensuring our trials meet research governance and quality standards, such as Good Clinical Practice. These standards are in place in health and social care research to protect the safety and wellbeing of trial participants and data collected is of the highest standard.

My academic background is in research methods and health, and I am interested in exploring participants’ experiences through qualitative methods.

I have recently completed my Masters in Research (MRes) with the school of Healthcare Professions at University of Portsmouth.

Currently I am working in collaboration with the Macmillan Clinical Psychology Service on the CHANCES study (Cancer of the Head and Neck: Client Experiences of Psychological Support).

We are looking at the experience of patients with head and neck cancer who are using a psychological therapy as part of their care.

Current research exploring head and neck cancer patients’ lived experience is limited, despite strong evidence showing that this patient population are more likely to experience distress.

We interviewed patients as part of the study and these allowed them to provide a detailed and rich personal account of their lived experiences.

The findings showed participants found psychological therapy helpful as this provided them with a range of strategies and exercises to use during their treatment as well as activities of daily living.

We can use these experiences to contribute to improving the quality of care to patients by making it more personalised, compassionate, and meaningful.

Another finding from the study included the need for patients to be provided with resources other than leaflets and pamphlets relating to their cancer care.

Following on from the study, colleagues from Macmillan Cancer Support, University of Portsmouth and I are currently designing a postcard to give to clients who are being referred to the service for psychological therapy.

This postcard will contain information about the service, interview quotes from participants, a brief introduction to mindfulness and a breathing exercise for them to try.


Twitter: @GiddinsBeth

To find out more about other clinical academics here at PHU see below and follow us on twitter @CAhubPHU

The research Design Service help support people to apply for research training fellowships such as the ICA programme, or apply for grants to fund new research projects. They can help you identify the best funding stream for your research idea, link you with academics in the field and review your funding application. They also offer regular workshops about how to get started in research as well as how to be competitive with grant applications.

Research Design Service:


Wessex Reach are a local organisation who support individuals across Wessex to start a research career. They provide information about training opportunities, research funding and help build collaborations with research teams. They also offer a mentoring programme to help support you get started on your research journey and help navigate the many bumps in the road.



The National Institute for Health Research is the research arm of the NHS and offers many different training and funding opportunities. It also provides useful information about the UKs research infrastructure and how research is undertaken in NHS organisations.

National Institute for Health Research (NIHR):


The health research authority regulate research activity within UK health and social care organisations. They co-ordinate both the ethical approval process and the trust R&D approvals, the latter in partnership with individual trusts. Their website contains useful information about whether you need NHS ethical approval for your project as well as information about the approvals process itself.

Health Research Authority:


The applied research collaboration Wessex supports applied health and social care research that responds to and meets the needs of local populations and local health and care systems, and they focus on four key research areas, age and aging, healthy communities, long term conditions and work force and health systems. They offer regular funding awards to start research careers as well as supporting people along the clinical academic career pathway. The also have an academy that provides research training and career development opportunities.

ARC Applied Research Collaborative Wessex:


 Video guide to the NHS research approvals process:

Audit team http://pht/Departments/ClinicalAudit/default.aspx

Quality Improvement:

Research and Innovation:

Research Office - Group Mailbox:

Portsmouth Clinical Trials Unit:


Patient Research Ambassadors:


Library Requests - Group Mailbox:

Library QAH - Group Mailbox:

We hold a monthly drop-in session on the second Thursday of the month in the Education centre. The team will be available to answer all questions related to clinical academic careers, research or improvement.


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