New Project To Significantly Improve Aquaculture Efficiencies

New Project To Significantly Improve Aquaculture Efficiencies-image

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

NUI Galway leads multidisciplinary research project that will position Ireland as a leading innovator for aquaculture resulting in increased competitiveness A new joint multidisciplinary aquaculture project between NUI Galway and Athlone Institute of Technology will significantly improve production management and efficiencies at inland aquaculture sites. MOREFISH, which is funded by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, aims to develop and test new innovative technologies and processes. Led by Dr Eoghan Clifford from the College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway and Professor Neil Rowan from Athlone Institute of Technology, the project addresses critically important needs identified by industry end-users, including the potential for advanced aeration technologies, efficient production management and deployment of next-generation disinfection technologies. This timely multidisciplinary research project will position Ireland as a leading innovator for established and emerging problem solving for aquaculture. The overall aims are to enhance production efficiency and sustainability in Irish onland aquaculture, leading to increased competitiveness for the sector, together with improved fish health, resulting in reduced finfish diseases and mortalities due to improved operating conditions. Dr Eoghan Clifford from the College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway, explains: “Aquaculture is one of the fastest growing food sectors in Europe where Ireland is the seventh largest producer of aquaculture in terms of volume of high value fish species and with exports of Irish aquaculture products supporting approximately 2,000 direct jobs. However, there is an increased need to develop innovative technologies in order to increase both Irish and broader European fish stock densities and productivity, along with simultaneously optimising energy and water consumption.” Professor Neil Rowan from Athlone Institute of Technology, added, “This project brings together a critical mass of engineering and scientific expertise from industry stakeholders and policy-makers, commercial operators and international experts who can respond directly to pressing issues identified through industry scoping. Indeed, the central novel theme that embodies MOREFISH is the generation of new knowledge on the application of management processes and alleviation of finfish diseases through the development of innovative solutions for sustainable freshwater aquaculture applications. Pilot studies are underway in freshwater aquaculture sites in Ireland using what are beyond-state-of-the-art approaches.” The NUI Galway team of (Dr Richard Walsh, Dr Richard Fitzgerald, Mr Alan Kennedy, Mr Ronan Cooney) and the Athlone Institute of Technology team of (Dr Alex Tahar, Dr Andy Fogarty, Ms Sarah Naughton and Dr Siobhan Kavanagh), envisage that MOREFISH will provide real time impact for pressing challenges facing fish farmers that will ultimately help increase fish biomass yields, productivity and stocking densities, mitigate contamination and cross-infection, and reduce production costs and waste. For further information about MOREFISH visit: or on Twitter @MOREFISHproject ENDS

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A Significant Year For NUI Galway Research Funding

A Significant Year For NUI Galway Research Funding-image

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

NUI Galway achieves highest success rate in attracting EU Horizon 2020 funding for research and innovation NUI Galway continued to excel in delivering outcomes for research activities throughout 2015. It achieved the highest success rate in attracting EU Horizon 2020 funding for research and innovation. Over the next five years, NUI Galway aims to secure its place in the top 200 universities worldwide while securing €100 million in competitive EU research funds. These and other goals are outlined in ‘Vision 2020’, the University’s Strategic Plan 2015-2020. NUI Galway set an ambitious goal to achieve €100 million throughout the seven year lifespan of the EU Horizon 2020 programme. And having won €15 million in 2015, are already ahead of target. Reflecting on a significant year for research at the University, Professor Lokesh Joshi, Vice-President for Research in NUI Galway, said: “Given the diversity of research being carried out at NUI Galway, our ambition is to become leaders in research and contribute significantly to ‘Innovation 2020’, Ireland’s five year strategy on research and development, science and technology. Innovation 2020 sets out the roadmap for continuing progress towards the goal of making Ireland a Global Innovation Leader, driving a strong sustainable economy and a better society.” Professor Joshi added, “We are incredibly proud of our research community and aim to enhance and develop this area across the University while continuing to form collaborative partnerships with industry. A clear indicator of our success as a university is how relevant our research is to our community and how it positively impacts upon society.” In 2015, several units at NUI Galway have achieved great levels of success. The Research Office has experienced a hugely successful year in many research disciplines across campus. Five of its up and-coming research leaders won European Research Council (ERC) grants, a rare feat for a University. In 2015, Research at NUI Galway resulted in the University being ranked at number 40 among the top 100 organisations from the Horizon 2020 programme with an EC contribution of almost €17 million. And out of the Top 100 organisations involved in Horizon 2020 projects NUI Galway was ranked at number 47. This year has also seen the US-based Blackstone Charitable Foundation extend its campus entrepreneurship Programme ‘Blackstone LaunchPad’ outside the US for the first time, to include NUI Galway. The Programme at NUI Galway is being established in partnership with Galway University Foundation, with an overall award of €1.3 million. This award will establish a partnership between NUI Galway and two other Irish universities, to introduce entrepreneurship as a viable career option and provide over 50,000 students with a network of venture coaches and an entrepreneurial support service. E-CAM, a new centre of excellence for supercomputing, of which the Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC) based at NUI Galway will be a major partner, was awarded €4.8 million to develop vital software components for the simulation of materials, including biological systems and advanced food for health and pharmaceuticals. The €4.8 million investment will support the EU’s efforts to become a world leader in the next generation of supercomputing. More than 150 robust software modules and associated applications will be created through the E-CAM centre over the next five years. The investment forms part of a wider €140 million euro investment by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme for research and innovation. The investment will support the EU’s efforts to become a world leader in the next generation of supercomputing. ICHEC will co-host the first E-CAM workshop in 2016. The Insight Centre for Data Analytics at NUI Galway was established in 2013 by Science Foundation Ireland with funding of €42 million over six years. During 2015, Insight enjoyed considerable success in acquiring additional competitive funding of over €5.4 million by the Insight Galway team. €4.7 million came from the EU Horizon 2020 programme demonstrating the remarkable connectivity that Galway's data analytics research team has with institutes across Europe. Insight received further funding support from Enterprise Ireland demonstrating a strong link to indigenous SMEs, funding from the Irish Research Council, support from Science Foundation Ireland through their TIDA programme and significant funding from private industry. The confidence that private industry has shown to date in the research carried out by Insight is testament to the relevance of data analytics research in solving real life enterprise issues. For 2016 Insight plans to further grow its research income, to increase multidisciplinary research particularly within NUI Galway and to further leverage its strong position as a recognised international leader in data analytics, academically and across multiple domains such as eGovernment, Healthcare & Lifesciences and business enterprises. CÚRAM, the SFI Centre for Research in Medical Devices, has been established at a pivotal point in the medical device industry in Ireland and Europe, as there are large markets with unmet clinical needs. CÚRAM's research builds on and enhances existing technology for the development of the next generation of medical devices to radically improve health outcomes for patients. A significant collaboration with Arch Therapeutics in 2015 will see CÚRAM work to advance an AC5 Surgical Hemostatic Device™ through the first clinical trial, leading up to potential commercialisation and develop pipeline applications for new products. CÚRAM has also been successful in 2015 securing funding of almost €24 million under the EU Horizon 2020 Programme. €12 million of this will fund two projects under the Research and Innovation Action (RIA), Personal Health Care programme and a further €12 million will fund three Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Networks – European Training Network projects, all to be coordinated by CÚRAM investigators. Looking to the next five years, NUI Galway will continue to maximise the potential of its research to have a global impact on society and significantly enhance the University’s international profile, attracting the best students, teachers and researchers. ENDS

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November 2015

Talk from SUSI Grants Authority to feature at NUI Galway Postgraduate Open Day

Talk from SUSI Grants Authority to feature at NUI Galway Postgraduate Open Day-image

Monday, 2 November 2015

SUSI (Student Universal Support Ireland), the national Awarding Authority for all higher and further education student grants, will be the feature talk at NUI Galway’s Autumn Postgraduate Open Day on Wednesday, 11 November, from 12 - 4pm in the Bailey Allen Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn. The SUSI talk, which will take place at 12.45pm and again at 1.45pm, will provide students with an opportunity to gain information on the funding opportunities and application process available to them. The Open Day will showcase over 400 of NUI Galway’s full-time and part-time postgraduate programmes, including taught and research masters, and doctoral research options. The Open Day will focus on the benefits of doing a postgraduate programme and the practicalities of making an application. With over 3,500 postgraduate students currently attending NUI Galway, over 70 information stands will provide details on postgraduate opportunities at the University, with academic staff and current students on hand to answer questions about specific courses. Information on scholarships schemes such as the Hardiman Scholarship and the Taught Masters Scholarship, fees and other practical considerations will also be made available to prospective students on the day. Celine O’Donovan, Senior Marketing Officer at NUI Galway, comments: “A postgraduate qualification broadens your skills-set, defines your areas of expertise, increases your specialist knowledge, and can improve your job prospects. Over 91% of NUI Galway graduates are currently employed or are in further study within six months of graduating, which is higher than the HEA national average for postgraduates.” Throughout the day postgraduate students will have the option of attending talks on funding opportunities and applications available to them, career prospects and progression, and there will also be information on how to apply for a postgraduate course. Irish graduates are ranked first in Europe in terms of how employers rank graduates, and postgraduate study boosts employability. The number of postgraduates in employment has grown consistently in recent years and NUI Galway’s well-established links with industry allows them to take the first step in building their career. NUI Galway offers a wide range of fourth level courses, developing programmes based on its traditional academic strengths of Arts, Social Sciences, Celtic Studies, Commerce, Medicine, Nursing, Health Science, Law, Engineering, Informatics and Science. These areas have been augmented with innovative research centres in areas as diverse as Biomedical Science and Engineering, International Human Rights, Digital Media and Film Studies, and Regenerative Medicine. New courses being introduced for 2016 include an MSc in Biomedical Genomics and a part-time MSc in Medical Technology and Regulatory Affairs. To view NUI Galway’s new and unique postgraduate programmes and to book your place at the Open Day visit  or simply call in on the day. To apply for an NUI Galway postgraduate course visit -Ends-

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BBC Presenter to Deliver Geology Lecture at NUI Galway

BBC Presenter to Deliver Geology Lecture at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 2 November 2015

BBC Science programme presenter, Professor Iain Stewart will deliver a Geology public lecture at NUI Galway on Monday, 9 November. The lecture, ‘Between a Rock and a Hard Place: communicating geology to society’, is a collaboration between Galway Earth and Ocean Sciences Student Society, Galway Geological Association and NUI Galway’s Earth and Ocean Sciences. Professor Iain Stewart is Professor of Geoscience Communication with the University of Plymouth and has worked on several science programmes for the BBC, including the BAFTA nominated ‘Earth: The Power of the Planet’. His research interests are in the broad area of Earth hazards and natural disasters, particularly in terms of investigating past major earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions in the Mediterranean region. Geoscientific knowledge and understanding lies at the heart of many of the most critical societal issues that faces us in the 21st century. The pressing human challenges of natural disaster reduction, energy supply and security, and mineral and water resource management, rest on geological foundations. And yet, outside of the academic and industrial geoscience community there is a limited appreciation of Earth Science, especially among policy makers and the wider public. It is for that reason that professional geologists are increasingly encouraged to communication more broadly what they do and what they know. This talk will use a decade of experiences in popularising geoscience to explore ways in which geologists can make our subject connect better with the public, and in doing so develop more effective strategies for meaningful public engagement. Dr Alessandra Costanzo, of NUI Galway’s Geofluid Research Group and Earth and Ocean Science said: “Professor Stewart is world renowned for his ability to communicate the fundamental principles of geological science to a wide audience of both technical earth scientists as well as the lay audience. It is indeed an honour to welcome such a high profile communicator to NUI Galway.” The lecture will take place in the Colm O’hEocha Theatre, Arts Millennium Building at on Monday, 9 November at 7pm. Places are limited and places can be reserved at -Ends-

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Holocaust Survivor To Visit NUI Galway

Holocaust Survivor To Visit NUI Galway-image

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Mr Tomi Reichental, a survivor of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, will give a talk about his experience of the Holocaust in the Seminar Room of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway on Sunday, 8 November at 1pm. Tomi Reichental was born in 1935 in Piestany Slovakia. In 1944 at age nine, he was captured by the Gestapo in Bratislava and deported to Bergen Belsen concentration camp with his mother, grandmother, brother, aunt and cousin. They were taken to detention camp Sered in Slovakia where the elusive Nazi War Criminal Alois Brunner had the power of life or death. When he was liberated in April 1945, he discovered that 35 members of his extended family were murdered. His grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins all died in the Holocaust. Recounting the sights and smells at the concentration camp Tomi Reichental said: “Typhoid and diphtheria were the biggest killers, but people were dying of starvation and cold in their hundreds. First the bodies were removed and burned, but later they were just piling up in front of our barracks, there were piles of decomposing bodies. The soldiers who liberated Belsen in April 1945 said they could smell the stench for 2 miles before they reached the camp. In the camp I could not play like a normal child, we didn’t laugh and we didn’t cry. If you stepped out of line, you could be beaten up even beaten to death. I saw it all with my own eyes.” Professor Ray Murphy from the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway, said: “Tomi is one of the last surviving witnesses to the Holocaust. As such, he feels compelled to speak out so that the victims are not forgotten and we do not repeat the mistakes of the past. For most of his life Tomi did not speak of the atrocities he bore witness to, but in recent years he has become an advocate for tolerance and compassion. His story is a story of the past. It is also a story for our times. The Holocaust reminds us of the dangers of racism and intolerance, providing lessons from the past that are relevant today. One of the lessons we must learn is to respect difference and reject all forms of racism and discrimination.” Reichental has lived in Dublin since 1959. In 2004, for the first time in 60 years, Reichental broke his silence and began to speak about his experiences during the Holocaust. Thousands of students in schools all over Ireland have heard his story, and an RTÉ documentary film called I Was a Boy in Belsen was based on Tomi’s life. The film was directed by the Emmy award winning producer Gerry Gregg and retraces the events that swept away the Jewish presence in Central Europe from the point of view of a boy who couldn’t understand why. To mark his 80th birthday on the 26 June 2015, the Board of Trustees of HETI (Holocaust Education Trust of Ireland) established a scholarship in Reichental’s name. It will be awarded annually in perpetuity to a deserving candidate to enable her or his participation in one of the Holocaust education programs. The scholarship is in recognition of Reichental’s immense contribution that he has made to Holocaust awareness and education over the years. The talk at NUI Galway will be followed by a Q&A session and Reichental will sign copies of his book I Was a Boy in Belsen. Admission is free but early arrival is advised. -Ends-

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NUI Galway Students Attended the Enactus World Cup in South Africa

NUI Galway Students Attended the Enactus World Cup in South Africa -image

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Enactus, an international, not-for-profit organisation, provides a platform for third-level students to create community development projects Four students from NUI Galway recently attended the Enactus World Cup in Johannesburg, South Africa. Orlagh Reynolds, Billy Delaney, Aaron Molloy and Leanne Burke travelled as part of a group of 40 Irish students representing Team Ireland at the Enactus World Cup 2015 in October. Enactus is an international, not-for-profit organisation which provides a platform for third-level students to create community development projects, while developing the skills to become socially responsible business leaders of the future. A total of 5,000 students, from 36 countries, gathered at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg for the three-day international conference which saw some of the world’s brightest, innovative and entrepreneurial students present their social enterprises to some of the world’s leading business figures with the hope of being crowned the Enactus World Champion. This year's World Cup winners were the UK, with their incredible projects focused on Education, Equality and Empowerment. One highlight of the World Cup was the opportunity that all students had to attend interactive, collaborative sessions with business leaders from many leading companies such as KPMG, Coca-Cola and Unilever focused on various global social issues. Billy Delaney, one of the NUI Galway students who travelled to the World Cup, said: “I attended KPMG's session on Sustainable Development. It provided students with a platform to discuss and investigate the Sustainable Development Goals. In a group with students across the world we brainstormed and delivered solutions. This approach educated me on a global level and allowed me to see the bigger picture.” Another highlight of the World Cup was the chance to experience the beauty and culture of South Africa, as well as the culture of all other teams. Commenting on the trip student Aaron Molloy said: “The Enactus World Cup is one of those enlightening, experiences that you will never forget. The ‘rainbow nation’ truly offered all the international guests the warmest of welcomes.” For more information on Enactus NUI Galway email or visit their Facebook page at -Ends-

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Minster Launches Initiative where Students Talk Publicly about Mental Health Issues

Minster Launches Initiative where Students Talk Publicly about Mental Health Issues-image

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Minister of State at the Department of Health with special responsibility for Primary Care, Social Care and Mental Health, Kathleen Lynch T.D., today (Tuesday, 3 November) launched a series of video clips of NUI Galway students discussing mental health issues. Organised by NUI Galway’s Student Counselling Service with financial support from the University’s Students Project Fund, the five short video clips show students talking directly to camera about their experiences of mental health difficulties and how they overcame their problems with help from the counselling service. The initiative sets out to get students to openly discuss their difficulties with a range of issues including depression, anxiety, procrastination and perfectionism, in a bid to reduce the stigma about these issues and also to increase awareness of the help available on campus. Last year 1,187 students attended the University’s Student Counselling Service with the biggest presenting issue being anxiety, which in the past two years has overtaken depression as the number one student issue. The Counselling Service hopes that by showing students willing to participate in the project, it will lead the way in de-stigmatising mental health and motivate other students to seek help to overcome their difficulties. Speaking at the launch Minister Lynch said: “21st century technology has obviously enhanced many aspects of our daily lives, and this process will inevitably continue. However, we all must be conscious that societal change does not impact negatively on our core human needs, by contributing to isolation or increased mental health pressures generally. In developing solutions to address emerging change, I very much welcome the new Student Counselling Service initiative being launched in NUI Galway today. This will ensure that no student has to face mental health issues on their own, and the initiative being rolled out today may prove beneficial for other colleges.” Chloe Lappin, a student who has taken up the challenge to speak openly about these topics, discloses: “Each time I am given the opportunity to speak openly about my mental health challenges, my confidence increases with respect to my ability to talk openly about an issue I once kept hidden for many years. I hope my video appearance highlights the fact that if you choose to seek support, and make a commitment to addressing your challenges, change can occur and there are plenty of people around you to help make those changes possible.” Jimmy Mc Govern, Students’ Union Welfare Officer in NUI Galway, responds: “I applaud this attitude and in my opinion any issue that affects your wellness or prevents your student experience from reaching its full potential is an issue you should address.” Bea Gavin, Head of NUI Galway’s Student Counselling Service, also asserts: “These videos convey a powerful message of hope for students, which is that whatever challenges they face, they can be overcome. The students who took part demonstrated a deep commitment not only to caring for their own mental health, but they have also used their experiences to help others. They are role models with whom students can both identify with and be inspired by.” For advice on mental health issues or to view the videos please visit or email -Ends-

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Master's degree in Medical Physics at NUI Galway receives accreditation

Master's degree in Medical Physics at NUI Galway receives accreditation-image

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

The MSc Degree in Medical Physics at NUI Galway, in conjunction with the Department of Medical Physics and Bioengineering (MPBE) at Galway University Hospitals, was recently awarded accreditation from the North American Commission on Accreditation of Medical Physics Education Programs (CAMPEP). This is the first medical physics programme in Europe to receive this accreditation and only the second outside North America. The first year students enrolled on the MSc in Medical Physics in 2002 and over 130 students have graduated since. Of these graduates, over 70% are currently employed as medical physicists in the healthcare environment in Ireland, UK and beyond. Commenting on this accreditation, Wil van der Putten, Adjunct Professor of Medical Physics, NUI Galway and Head of MPBE at Galway University Hospital, said: “Accreditation by CAMPEP is an important validation of the quality of this course. The Galway MSc is a unique collaboration between University and Hospital staff. The ability of the students to learn and conduct projects in the clinical environment accounts for the success of our graduates in finding employment. It is a tribute to both the staff in the Department of Medical Physics and Bioengineering and University staff in the Schools of Anatomy, Physiology, Medicine, Engineering and Physics. I would also like to pay tribute to colleagues in other hospitals who have accommodated our students for their dissertation work.” -Ends-

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Achieving Success in Inter-Cultural Global Management at NUI Galway MBA Masterclass

Achieving Success in Inter-Cultural Global Management at NUI Galway MBA Masterclass-image

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

NUI Galway’s Executive MBA recently hosted a Masterclass event entitled Achieving Success in Inter-Cultural Global Management, presented by Mike Hughes, Executive Vice-President, Strategic Customers and Segments with Schneider Electric. Mike reflected on his career journey since joining Schneider Electric, a global specialist in Energy Management and Automation, in 2000. Mike has held numerous business leadership positions across the globe and is currently responsible for the strategic accounts and segments of the company. Speaking at the event Mike said: “I currently work with large global customers and come up with solutions on how they can improve their energy consumption and thereby increase their overall operations efficiently. To be successful in this global business, it is important to understand the culture that I’m working in.” Mike delivered a presentation on the interpay of Corportate Culture, Geographic Culture and Global Culture with corporate structures and operations. In the engaging Q&A which followed, discussion centred on how organisations operate in a global corporate environment and the importance of understanding different perspectives within diverse management structures. Speaking after the event, Dr Tom Acton, Head of School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway, said: “Mike is the latest in our Masterclass series of globally-leading speakers, and continues our aim of bringing best-in-class presentations to our MBA students. Mike gave fabulous insights into the energy industry, global business processes, and the importance of culture for international business. It was a great evening and, as intended, provided the audience with a set of valuable takeaways focused on success generation in international markets.” ENDS

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Chronic Pain Sufferers Invited To Join Free Online Treatment Programme

Chronic Pain Sufferers Invited To Join Free Online Treatment Programme-image

Thursday, 5 November 2015

NUI Galway online treatment programme for chronic pain sufferers extended due to the number of inquiries received in recent weeks A recent online treatment programme, set up by expert psychologists and physiotherapists, aimed at helping those who suffer from chronic pain, has been extended due to the number of inquiries received in recent weeks. The Centre for Pain Research at NUI Galway, with the support of the Health Research Board, is currently recruiting people with chronic pain (pain which has lasted for three months or more). The Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) trial will provide eight online sessions to people in the comfort of their own home. At the moment, such supports are mainly available through specialised hospital-based pain management teams. Chronic pain affects up to 35% of the Irish population and is increasingly recognised as a disease in its own right. Chronic pain is sometimes associated with psychological effects, which may include anxiety and changes in mood, as well as forgetfulness, and difficulties in focusing attention, planning tasks and making decisions. The ACT trial is based on emerging clinical science that demonstrates the usefulness of managing chronic pain through mindfulness and psychological wellbeing. The study is open to people all over Ireland and will take place over the coming months. GPs and physiotherapists around the country are being encouraged to refer suitable people with pain to the study. The free online sessions in the ACT programme will focus on values and goals that are individual to each person in the trial. Participants will be provided with instructions on a range of activity-pacing techniques to encourage more consistent levels of activity from day-to-day. In addition, mindfulness techniques and cognitive behavioural therapy will help identify both negative thinking patterns and the development of effective challenges. Dr Christopher Dwyer, coordinator of the study at the Centre for Pain Research at NUI Galway, says: “We know that psychological therapies provided to people with chronic pain are beneficial, particularly for people at risk of long term disability. However, this type of service is often only accessible via specialised hospital-based pain management teams. In this trial, we will offer this type of service to people all over the country and at any stage of injury.” People who take part in the ACT trial will not need to attend any clinic or the university at any stage. All materials are tailored for those wishing to learn effective ways of managing their chronic pain. Participants can access physiotherapy and all medical services as usual while involved in the trial. Study supervisor Dr Brian McGuire said: “This is a promising new online pain management programme and we are hopeful it will be of benefit to people with chronic pain.” To find out if you are eligible, visit and complete the online survey. For further information contact Dr Christopher Dwyer at the Centre for Pain Research, NUI Galway or email, or see the website Alternatively, phone 091 495391. GP’s or physiotherapists who are interested in referring suitable patients to the trial can also use these contact details. -Ends-

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