Conduct research with STARS2023-11-30T10:15:36+10:00

Conduct research with STARS

STARS Education and Research Alliance

Want to conduct research with STARS?

The Alliance team have developed an overview to assist clinicians and researchers to navigate human research processes in STARS. The 3-page flowcharts and accompanying notes were endorsed by the STARS Clinical Research Committee in July 2023. Please review the information in these guides, and on this webpage and contact the Alliance Manager or Metro North Research Office if you have any questions about research in STARS.

Firstly, what type of project are you conducting? Quality initiatives (eg clinical audit, service evaluation, quality improvement, case studies) and research projects exist on a continuum. Each have their own methodologies or frameworks and are all valid approaches to addressing a clinical problem. All projects on the quality-research continuum require appropriate governance at STARS. Information on quality initiatives will be captured on the STARS Safety and Quality Register, and in the STARS Research Portfolio for research projects. See the MN or STARS Safety and Quality websites on QHEPS (Queensland Health network computers only). The Metro North Research Office has information and a helpful guide to determine whether a project is a quality initiative or research.

If you’re interested in collaborating with STARS for a research project, please review the information on this website, including the process for new research project collaborations at STARS. We encourage research teams to engage in collaborative discussions with the Alliance team and clinical leaders in STARS as early as possible in the planning phase of a project – please contact the Alliance Manager via email on or

To start a collaboration, complete the STARS study overview template (Alliance Manager will email this to you) and send us your protocol (if developed). This form captures preliminary information about the project including research question, team, sponsor, and support/resources requested from STARS. Please refer to the STARS Clinical Research Collaboration Criteria to understand priorities around the research portfolio in STARS. A Think-Tank may be arranged between the research team and relevant staff in STARS (clinicians, researchers, support staff etc). This ~1hr meeting is an opportunity to discuss your research project with members of the Alliance and clinical leaders to determine alignment with our collaboration criteria and feasibility at STARS.

The MN Research Policy 004365 provides the overarching guide for all research conducted by, or in collaboration with MN. See MN Research website.​ All research conducted at STARS will require human ethics approval and a site-specific assessment (SSA) that includes STARS as a site. Please note that STARS is a separate hospital to RBWH, but both sites may be included in a multi-site HREC/SSA application via Metro North. Please refer to the Metro North Health Ethics and Governance webpage for further information.

The STARS Research Portfolio contains details of all research projects that meet any of the following criteria:

  • Project involves STARS staff.
  • Project includes STARS patients (or their data/tissue).
  • Data collection occurs in the STARS facility.
  • STARS resources are contributed to the project (eg data, equipment, staff in-kind time).

This portfolio is managed by the Alliance Manager and presented to the STARS Clinical Research Committee, and STARS Education and Research Alliance Executive Governance Committee.  At a minimum, the documents to be filed for the portfolio include: protocol, ethics application, SSA application, HREC approval letter, SSA approval letter. Information in the STARS Research Portfolio will be updated regularly, so lead investigators will be expected to provide an update (minimum annual frequency) as to the project status in STARS.

We encourage individuals employed by The University of Queensland (UQ) or Metro North, to include the Alliance affiliation on their outputs (conference abstracts, journal articles etc), especially where it involves research collaboration with STARS, or it involves STARS patients or STARS facilities. This will help us to promote the important partnership between UQ and Metro North and promote STARS as a research-active hospital. The correct use of affiliations assists with reporting of outputs and impacts associated with the Alliance via corporate dashboards.  Please refer to this guide for further information.

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