Job Opportunities

Post-Doctoral Researcher


Medicine & Health

School/Research Institute/Centre/Unit

School of Pharmacy

Post Title

Post-Doctoral Researcher


Implications of the EU Regulation on Health Technology Assessment for medical devices in Ireland

Name of Principal Investigator /Reports to

Prof Caitriona O’Driscoll

Position Summary

Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a full-time or part-time, fixed term contract as Postdoctoral Researcher at School of Pharmacy, University College Cork (UCC), Ireland. The candidate will be hosted in collaboration with the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Directorate of the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) for the duration of this post. The position is available initially for 1-1.5 year. This position is funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) in collaboration with CURAM, an SFI Research Centre for Medical Devices.

Job Description: This is a joint Post-Doctoral position between the School of Pharmacy, UCC and the HTA Directorate, HIQA. The candidate will be employed by UCC, but will be based between the School of Pharmacy and HIQA, and will be a key member of both the Pharmaceutics / Drug Delivery Team in the School of Pharmacy and the HTA Directorate in HIQA. In addition, the candidate will liaise closely with the Clinical Translational Research and Support Team in CÚRAM.

As part of the new Regulation on Health Technology Assessment (HTAR), Joint Clinical Assessments (JCAs) undertaken by experts from HTA bodies across the EU will provide assessments of selected high-risk medical devices and diagnostics. A JCA will comprise a description of the technology and the burden of disease, as well as an assessment of the relative clinical effectiveness and safety of the technology compared to existing technologies. HTAR aims to support Member States in making more evidence-based and timely decisions on patient access to selected new medical devices and in vitro diagnostics. HTAR aims to ensure that accurate high quality information informs investment in high-risk medical device and in vitro diagnostics across the EU. Some European countries have embedded HTA in investment decisions through the national health insurance-based reimbursement processes. Others provide HTA advice to local decision makers in hospitals and community health organisations at the request of decision makers.

The aims of this project are to:

  • Describe the current decision-making pathways and oversight structures for investment decisions relating to high-risk medical devices and diagnostics in Ireland
  • Conduct an international review of decision-making pathways and oversight structures for investment decisions relating to high-risk medical devices and diagnostics.
  • Engage with stakeholders and suggest potential decision-making pathways and oversight structures for investment decisions relating to high-risk medical devices and diagnostics in Ireland, which leverages the outputs of the JCAs produced under the HTAR framework.

Training and peer-to-peer learning/mentoring will be provided by the experienced team at UCC and HIQA, to support the conduct of this research. The candidate will be encouraged and supported to apply for additional funding through EU and other granting agencies to further extend the scope of this and related projects.

Desirable criteria specific to the post are as follows:

  • Candidates with a Ph.D. degree in Pharmacy, Medicine, Public Health, Health Services Research, Biomedical Science, Pharmacoeconomics or a related field are highly encouraged to apply
  • Experience in one or more of the following areas will be desirable: health technology assessment, clinical translation, medical device policy, regulatory science
  • Practical experience of analysis of data using a variety of methodologies, including evidence synthesis, policy analysis and semi-structured interviews
  • Experience of liaising with both internal and external stakeholders to present information and or gather data
  • Knowledge of the healthcare system in Ireland and an understanding of the role of HTA and evidence synthesis to inform decision-making.
  • Evidence of peer-reviewed publications in international scientific journals
  • Prior research experience and the capability to work independently
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to contribute in a multidisciplinary team setting
  • Excellent oral/written communication skills
  • Availability to start by the end of May 2024 will be an advantage

Salary: €41,208 - €47,477 depending on experience

Post Duration: one year

About University College Cork: UCC is a leading Irish university with an international reputation in innovation, and entrepreneurship. It is ranked in the top 2% of universities worldwide based on the quality of its research outputs and peer esteem indicators and was the first University to be named The Sunday Times University of the Year for two consecutive years (2016 and 2017). UCC has a vibrant research community of almost 3,500 postgraduate students and over 250 postdoctoral researchers, across all the major academic disciplines. UCC has active postdoctoral associations and programs that aim to provide support for all aspects of a postdoc’s career, including professional development training and everyday work. UCC is the host and partner of leading Irish research centers, including APC Microbiome Ireland SFI Research Centre and Tyndall National Institute providing the access to state-of-the-art research expertise and core facilities.  School of Pharmacy was ranked in the top 100 (66th) in the QS World Rankings by Subject in 2022 and is a part of the College of Medicine and Health, a very interactive environment with multidisciplinary academic teams providing plenty of opportunities to network with world-class scientists and clinicians. UCC is an accredited research organisation and as such can form hosting agreements with third country nationals (and non-EEA nationals) for the purpose of conducting research in the University.

The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) is an independent statutory body established to promote safety and quality in the provision of health and social care services for the benefit of the health and welfare of the public.

Reporting to the Minister for Health and engaging with the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, HIQA has responsibility for the following:

  • Setting standards for health and social care services — Developing person-centred standards and guidance, based on evidence and international best practice, for health and social care services in Ireland.
  • Regulating social care services — The Chief Inspector of Social Services within HIQA is responsible for registering and inspecting residential services for older people and people with a disability, and children’s special care units.
  • Regulating health services — Regulating medical exposure to ionising radiation.
  • Monitoring services — Monitoring the safety and quality of permanent international protection accommodation service centres, health services and children’s social services against the national standards. Where necessary, HIQA investigates serious concerns about the health and welfare of people who use health services and children’s social services.
  • Health technology assessment — Evaluating the clinical and cost effectiveness of health programmes, policies, medicines, medical equipment, diagnostic and surgical techniques, health promotion and protection activities, and providing advice to enable the best use of resources and the best outcomes for people who use our health service.
  • Health information — Advising on the efficient and secure collection and sharing of health information, setting standards, evaluating information resources and publishing information on the delivery and performance of Ireland’s health and social care services.
  • National Care Experience Programme — Carrying out national service-user experience surveys across a range of health and social care services, with the Department of Health and the HSE.

Visit for more information. 

 Key Duties and Responsibilities

This title will apply to newly qualified Post-Doctoral Researchers and will be considered as a period of training as the researcher will have dual goals in terms of the research project and their own career development.  The researcher will be mentored by a Principal Investigator (PI).  It is expected that a researcher would spend not more than 3 years at the Post Doctoral level, subject to the term of the project and would then be eligible to compete for a Senior Post Doctoral post advertised by the University.

The primary focus of the Postdoctoral Researcher will be research however a particular emphasis during this stage should include;

  • To conduct a specified programme of research under the supervision and direction of a Principal Investigator/Project Leader.
  • To engage in appropriate training and professional development opportunities as required by the Principal Investigator, School or College in order to develop research skills and competencies.
  • To gain experience in grant writing.
  • To engage in the dissemination of the results of the research in which they are engaged, as directed by, with the support of and under the supervision of a Principal Investigator.
  • To become familiar with the publication process.
  • To acquire generic and transferable skills (including project management, business skills and postgraduate mentoring/supervision).
  • To engage in the wider research and scholarly activities of the research group, School or College.
  • To interact closely with postgraduate research students who are studying for a Masters or a PhD and possibly have an agreed role in supporting these students in their day to day research in conjunction with an academic supervisor.
  • To carry out administrative work to support the programme of research.
  • To carry out additional duties as may reasonably be required within the general scope and level of the post.
  • To contribute to costing research grant proposals and assist in the financial management of a research project.


  • A PhD qualification or nearing thesis submission.
  • Appropriate research experience.
  • Appropriate technical competence and accomplishment.
  • A capability of working within a project team to achieve results.
  • Good communication, organisation and interpersonal skills.
  • A commitment to gaining practical experience working on a research project.
  • Ability to work well within a team.
  • Please note that Garda vetting and international police clearance check may form part of the selection process.

Informal enquiries can be made in confidence to Caitriona O’Driscoll, Professor and Chair of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmacy, Tel: + 353 (0) 21 4901396; Email: 

Applications must be submitted online via the University College Cork vacancy portal ( Queries relating to the online application process should be referred to, quoting the job-title.

Candidates should apply, in confidence, before 12 noon (Irish Local Time) on Friday, April 26th 2024.

School of Pharmacy


Pharmacy Building Room UG06 University College Cork