Trend of Knowledge Production of Research Centers in the Field of Medical Sciences in Iran

Article excerpt

Abstract

Establishment of medical research centers at universities and health-related organizations and annually evaluation of their research activities was one of the strategic policies which followed by governmental organization in last decade in order to strengthening the connections between health research system and health system. The aim of this study is to scrutinize the role of medical research centers in medical science production in Iran. This study is a cross sectional which has been performed based on existing reports on national scientometrics and evaluation results of research performance of medical research centers between years 2001 to 2010. During last decade number of medical research centers increased from 53 in 2001 to 359 in 2010. Simultaneous scientific output of medical research centers has been increased especially articles indexed in ISI (web of science). Proper policy implementation in the field of health research system during last decades led to improving capacity building and growth knowledge production of medical science in recent years in Iran. The process embedding research into the health systems requires planning up until research products improves health outcomes and health equity in country.

Keywords: Medical Research Center, Knowledge Production, Health System

Introduction

The main goal of health system is to improve public health. Health and medical researches in worldwide, particularly in developing countries face many problems including globalization, inequity in health, appearance of recurrent and new diseases, increasing poverty, economic crises, national and regional conflicts, threat of chemical and biological weapons, increasing psychiatric diseases and health related expenditures (1). Comprehensive planning in the field of health is responded two basic needs in a country, health community and scientific movement for development. "The health research system in a country exists at the intersection of two, larger, complex systems - the health system and research system" (2). Research on health needs researches in other field of sciences. Establishment of medical research centers (MRCs) at universities and health-related organizations and annually evaluation of their research activities was one of the strategic policies which followed by governmental organization in last decade in order to strengthening the connections between health research system (HRS) and health system (3).

MRC, an organized research unit, defines as dependent multidisciplinary entity at a university of medical sciences or a health research system organization with many different purposes such as promoting qualitative and quantitative health research, improving the human and physical resources for health research, researching in priority areas and benefit from results of research in practice (4). Different types of research centers have existed at universities for many years, at least since the late 19th century (5). The history of establishment of research center has begun after approval of the Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution in 1990 In Iran.

The aim of this study was to scrutinize the role of medical research centers (MRC) in medical science production in Iran.

Methods

This study is a cross sectional performed based on existing reports on national scientometrics and evaluation results of research performance of MRCs from 2001 to 2010. From 2001, Deputy of Research and Technology, Ministry of Health and Medical Education (MOHME), as the main national policy maker in NHRS is responsible to evaluate MRCs' research performance annually and all MOHME approved MRCs have been involved. MRCs have been evaluated by comprehensive research indicators derived from HRS functions defined by WHO and modified by MOHME (2, 6-7). These indicators are revised and developed annually based on NHRS policies considering stakeholders' opinions.

One of the most important axes of research activities of MRCs is knowledge production which is evaluated by below criteria. …