New trial aims to improve care for people with multiple medical conditions

Galway Daily news New trial at NUI Galway aims to improve care for people with multiple medical conditions

Managing a long-term health problem can be a difficult task, dealing with multiple medical conditions can go badly wrong.

Currently more 5 percent of Irish patients over 65 years old are on 15 or more different drugs to deal with their medical conditions.

There are obvious concerns about being able to take that many drugs meant for different medical conditions, including their potential side effects.

NUI Galway is leading a new cross border trial meant to improve the effectiveness and safety of treatments for patients with more than one health issue.

Working with GPs and Pharmacists from Northern Ireland and the Republic, the trial will attempt to find a better way of prescribing medications.

The MY COMRADE PLUS  trial will involve two GPs, or a General Practitioner and a Practice based Pharmacist, working together to come up with the best, safest combination of medications for a patient.


Eight GPs each from the North and Republic will take part in the trial which it’s hoped will improve case and encourage people to be more involved in managing their condition.

Professor Andrew Murphy, Director of the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland based at NUI Galway and Turloughmore Medical Centre, Co. Galway is leading the trial.

“We are addressing a common but important issue in General Practice,” said Professor Murphy.

“NUI Galway staff working in collaboration on this trial will be helping to lay foundations for preventative measures that can improve the quality of life of many people and also help staff involved to continue to learn and grow through working with each other.”

If this pilot trial shows promise it will lead to a larger trial to test its viability to medical practice as a whole.

This is one of 11 medical trials to have received funding under a new Cross-border Healthcare Intervention Trials in Ireland Network Project.

CHITIN is led by the Public Health Agency in partnership with the Health Research Board.

This project aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people living in Northern Ireland and the border counties – Donegal, Leitrim, Sligo, Cavan, Monaghan, and Louth – through cross-border research collaborations.

Dr Nikita Burke, Development Manager with the HRB Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland, NUI Galway (front left) pictured with Cross-Border Healthcare Intervention Trials in Ireland Network (CHITIN) partners from Public Health Agency, Health Research Board, Department of Health Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland and Special EU Programmes Body.