|Location:||Newcastle upon Tyne|
|Salary:||£29,619 to £31,411 per annum|
|Placed On:||11th January 2023|
|Closes:||9th February 2023|
We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.
This is an exciting opportunity to develop your career in a specialist field of health psychology as part of a world-leading genetics service specialised in genetic neuromuscular diseases at Newcastle University, with strong links and collaboration with the Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals Trust. As an Assistant Psychologist in this setting, you will work closely with and support a dedicated Clinical Psychologist.
The role will allow you to help shape the future of psychosocial care in genetic disease through addressing research questions, working with paediatric patients and their families, applying methodology, collecting and analysing data and having a real impact on national care recommendations. Opportunities will be available to work and develop collaborations with key opinion leaders in the field of rare neuromuscular disease and build expertise in genetic disease psychosocial care in your own right.
Your focus will be on Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) under the supervision of a Clinical Psychologist working in the same field. DMD is a rare, genetic, progressive neuromuscular disease*. Areas of research may include (but are not limited to): the impact of diagnosis on families and appropriate intervention/support; screening for common comorbidities in DMD (such as ADHD, Autism and anxiety); the multi-factorial benefits of effective psychosocial care for people with DMD; and mapping current service provision. The experience and work gained in this role will be of direct relevance and importance in other genetic diseases.
This work forms part of a larger project (DMD Care UK) in collaboration with and funded by patient organisations, which is developing evidence and consensus-guidelines across all (multi-systemic) areas of DMD care.
This post is fixed term for 30 months, working 60% FTE (3 days per week). For informal enquiries contact Chloe.Geagan@ncl.ac.uk or Catherine.Turner@ncl.ac.uk
About Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD): DMD is a rare genetic condition caused by mutations in the gene that codes for dystrophin. It almost always affects boys and the average age of diagnosis in the UK is 4 years. There are currently around 2500 boys and young men living with DMD in the UK.
The lack of dystrophin causes progressive muscle damage leading to loss of the ability to walk at around age 10, followed by increasingly impaired use of upper limbs. The heart (as a muscle) is also inevitably affected, as are the muscles needed for breathing. With current best care, people with DMD usually die from heart or respiratory complications in their late 20s/early 30s. There is no cure and the only effective treatment available to all patients with DMD is long-term corticosteroids, physiotherapy and heart medication to slow the disease progression.
We also know that dystrophin plays an important role in the brain. Boys and men with DMD are more likely to have ADHD, autism, anxiety and learning difficulties than the general population although this is not the case for every person with DMD. Research is underway to increase our knowledge about this.
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