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Middle East African Journal of Ophthalmology Middle East African Journal of Ophthalmology
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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 164-169

Ophthalmic research priorities and practices in Nigeria: An assessment of the views of Nigerian ophthalmologists

1 Department of Ophthalmology, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Nigeria
2 Department of Ophthalmology, University of Abuja, Abuja, Nigeria
3 Department of Ophthalmology, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano, Nigeria
4 Department of Ophthalmology, Federal Medical Center, Owo, Nigeria
5 Eye Unit, St Mary's Catholic Hospital, Ago Iwoye, Nigeria
6 Department of Ophthalmology, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Shika-Zaria, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Abdulraheem O Mahmoud
P. O. Box 13834, Ilorin - 240008
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-9233.80707

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Purpose : To study the views of ophthalmologists on research priorities and outcomes in Nigeria. Materials and Methods : A structured questionnaire was distributed to 120 ophthalmologists and ophthalmic residents who were attending an annual congress in Nigeria. The participants' background information, relative research priorities, frequency of publications, research types, publication media, challenges faced in publishing and impact on health practice or policy were collected. Results : Eighty-nine (74.2%) of the 120 questionnaires were returned. Childhood blindness was given the highest priority for ophthalmic research by 42.9% of the respondents, and genetic studies had the least priority (19.8%). About two-thirds of the respondents had either never been involved or only involved occasionally in any type of ophthalmic research. Clinical trials (13.1%) and basic science studies (12%) were the least-performed types of research. About 51% of the respondents indicated that they had never published in journals nor did so "occasionally"; only 9% quarterly and 43% published less than once a year. They also indicated that their research very rarely resulted in change of clinical practice or health policy (20%). Conclusions : Research works conducted by respondents were largely simple low-budget ones that rarely had significant impacts and outcomes, including publication. There is a need to retrain and emphasize the importance of research during undergraduate and postgraduate medical education. Adequate resources and research infrastructure should be provided for ophthalmic research in Nigeria.

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