Dr Erin Morton is a multi-centre clinical trial management specialist, enabler, and implementer of research translation locally, nationally, and internationally. She has over 15 years of clinical trial expertise varying across the full gamut of clinical trials from Phase I to Phase IV, and in roles including ethics specialist, clinical research associate (monitor), study coordinator, project manager, data manager, pharmacy technician, laboratory technician, pharmacokinetic statistician, operations manager (including contracts and budgets), and Investigator. She currently manages the successful Health Systems Research team under the oversight of Professor Derek Chew, conducting cardiovascular investigator-driven trials and utilising her skills to translate research questions into improved health for the community with a particular interest in digital health.
I am honoured to lead the newly formed Health Data Science & Clinical Trials group under the direction of Prof Derek Chew, and stewardship of Professor Danny Eckert, FHMRI Executive and the DVCR. We conduct and help others to conduct clinical research from Phase I to IV and beyond, translating research questions into improved health for the community while concentrating on digital health.
By background I am a multi-centre clinical trial specialist, project manager, and internationally accredited Clinical Research Associate with a PhD in Medicine specialising in pharmacology. I designed my PhD to bring me out of the lab and ‘test out’ the clinical trial space, in a project where I could specifically see an immediate improvement in my participants’ lives… and I’ve been hooked on clinical research since then.
My pathway has been non-traditional, with a lot of career interruptions due to industry-based confidential work and 2 maternity leave breaks, but these have contributed significantly to my experience both as a professional and on a personal level, making me a better manager. In addition to leading our team I am part of the CMPH mentoring scheme and benefit both from my connection with my own mentor and with my mentees (two CMPH, one SAHMRI).
What I value most about working at Flinders is the passion to improve health via research, and collegiality across campuses. I love working with new collaborators and would encourage EMCAs to reach out and get involved in all the opportunities to network both within CMPH, the wider Uni, and with their key stakeholders (eg SA Health).
Similarly I’d suggest EMCAs investigate volunteering for relevant national/international committees, eg I’m part of the steering committee for the Australian and New Zealand Alliance for Cardiovascular Trials. You learn more, make great connections, and help progress your area of interest at the same time.
My proudest Flinders achievements to date are seminal innovations initiated to implement real-time health data for both clinicians and researchers. My hardest personal achievement right now is attempting to get back into running including early Wednesday morning trainings – I am not naturally a morning person!