StAR MD

In collaboration with: Bon Secours Hospital Dublin and Beacon Hospital

The informing principle of the StAR programme is to accelerate the delivery of innovative, impactful research in health sciences across a range of critical research themes by attracting the best research talent in Ireland. To implement its strategy, in 2016, RCSI established the StAR MD programme to strengthen translational research and build on skilled clinical expertise to improve modern healthcare issues. The programme is a highly prestigious and unique opportunity for registrars and specialist registrars who are on a career trajectory towards consultant level.

The StAR MD by dissertation is a body of work representing two calendar years of research activity and holds a place among the higher doctorates at level 10 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ). The MD is a key element in the professional training of clinicians, and in order to graduate with the MD degree, you must provide evidence of an original contribution to any area of medicine, surgery, psychiatry or medical science.

RCSI is committed to supporting an effective supervisory system for each candidate registered for the MD and thus a principal and co-supervisor is appointed for each StAR MD candidate.

The 2021 StAR MD programme encompasses funded MD fees for two years sponsored by the private hospital, a RCSI research consumable budget and a salaried clinical commitment to Bon Secours Hospital Dublin or the Beacon Hospital.

Bon Secours Hospital Dublin is an independent acute care hospital that is part of Bon Secours Health System, Ireland’s largest private healthcare group. It is a not-for-profit organisation which has been a leader in healthcare excellence and has been meeting surgical and medical patient needs since it was established in 1951.

The hospital provides a comprehensive range of modern diagnostic, therapeutic and support services underpinned by the latest medical technology and approaches combined with traditional values, compassion and personalised medical care. In 2002, the hospital was the first internationally-accredited hospital in Ireland when it achieved JCI accreditation. The hospital has set the standard for all private hospitals in Ireland and all hospitals are now required to be JCI-accredited. In 2016, the hospital achieved another first when it became the first private hospital to achieve JAG accreditation of its endoscopy unit, which is widely recognised internationally as the gold standard for endoscopy units.

Bon Secours Hospital Dublin employs over 600 staff and has a consultant staff of over 150. It is also a teaching hospital of RCSI and DCU's nursing programme.

Beacon Hospital is one of Europe’s most advanced private hospitals, with over 1,300 consultants, nurses and healthcare professionals. Offering world-class acute medical and surgical services, the hospital strives for excellence in patient care, medical standards and overall hospital experience.

Beacon Hospital prides itself on a comprehensive infection prevention and control programme, highlighting their commitment to being the highest-quality and safest provider of acute care services. Beacon for Kids is Ireland’s only dedicated private paediatric unit offering a range of outpatient services and surgical procedures.

Beacon Hospital has been awarded the highest standards in JCI and has also been awarded JAG accreditation for its four state-of-the-art endoscopy suites. It offers a full service multidisciplinary approach to cancer treatment inclusive of medical oncology, surgical treatment, radiation oncology, inpatient care, pain management, palliative care and more. Beacon Centre for Orthopaedics is situated in a new and modern unit. It is home to 18 specialist orthopaedic consultants along with Ireland’s most comprehensive Sports Lab and team of physiotherapists. Beacon Hospital is the GE European Showcase Unit for Radiology and as such, is fitted with the most technologically advanced diagnostic equipment available. Additionally, Beacon Hospital offers high quality, multi-disciplinary research with the aim to deliver evidence-based medicine and improved treatment options patients. Beacon Hospital –This is Modern Medicine.

Application information

Applicants should liaise with potential supervisors to have agreed the focus of the research they wish to carry out.

These MD places will be competitive. It is expected that interested applicants will have:

  • Obtained general or trainee specialist registration with the Irish Medical Council
  • Previously undertaken research or audit projects at undergraduate and/or postgraduate level
  • Presentations and publications confirming the quality of their research activity

Applications should include a CV, a research proposal (250 words) and application form (downloadable below) and should be emailed to starmd@rcsi.ie by Wednesday, 6 January 2021 (5pm GMT)

StAR MD application form 2021 DOCX | 592.9 KB

Shortlisting of applicants will be undertaken by a panel of assessors. All shortlisted candidates will be interviewed. An indicative timescale is given below.

  • Applications open: 1 October 2020
  • Applications close: 6 January 2021 (5pm GMT)
  • Interviews end: January/early February 2021
  • Positions begin: July 2021 

If you have any queries, please contact starmd@rcsi.ie

StAR MD logos 2021