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Vacancy: 1970 British Cohort Study (BCS70) Survey Doctor


The IOE’s Centre for Longitudinal Studies  are looking for a survey doctor will be responsible for providing medical advice during the course of the forthcoming 1970 British Cohort Study (BCS70) survey in 2016/17, which will have a biomedical focus. The Survey Doctor will report to Professor Alice Sullivan, BCS70’s Principal Investigator.

This post is based in the IOE’s Centre for Longitudinal Studies in the Department of Social Science, where CLOSER is also based. This post is not based in CLOSER.

Closing Date: 11 Dec 2015. Latest time for the submission of applications 16.59.


About BCS70:

The 1970 British Cohort Study (BCS70) is a longitudinal birth cohort study which aims to follow all those living in England, Scotland and Wales who were born in one particular week in April 1970. The study charts the effects of events and circumstances in early life on outcomes and achievements later on. Since 1970 there have been eight follow-ups, at ages 5, 10, 16, 26, 30, 34, 38 and 42.  The next follow-up will take place in 2016/17 when study members will be aged 46-47.

The 2016/17 survey will have a biomedical focus.  Study members will be visited in their homes by a trained nurse who will conduct an interview, a series of cognitive assessments, a number of measurements (height, weight, body fat, hip and waist circumference, grip strength, blood pressure, balance assessment and potentially hearing) and collect a blood sample.  Blood samples will be posted to a laboratory where they will be analysed for total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and Hba1c.  Blood pressure and blood test results will be provided to participants’ GPs.

About the role:

The survey doctor will be responsible for providing medical advice during the course of the study, including:

  1. Take telephone calls from nurses and their supervisors regarding clinical concerns that arise during home visits.
  2. Interpret abnormalities in blood test results.
  3. Take telephone calls from survey members’ GPs re blood pressure or blood test results.
  4. Contact GPs or study members, as appropriate, with regard to serious abnormalities in blood pressure or blood test results
  5. Provide advice on how to deal with needlestick injuries according to an agreed protocol

More details are provided in Table 1.

The role is an exciting opportunity to be involved in an internationally renowned birth cohort study.  There will be potential opportunities for the appointed individual to establish links with the academics running the study which could lead to future research collaborations.

The survey doctor may be called between 08.00 and 22.00 (times when nurses may be interviewing). Calls do not always need to be taken immediately, but the doctor will normally respond within a few hours to messages left on the phone. (If there is any medical emergency or immediate treatment is required, nurses call an ambulance.)

We expect the number of calls to be variable and of low volume, ranging from none some weeks to four or five in other weeks, occasionally more; some in ‘working hours’ and some ‘out of hours’. However, the main commitment is to being able to receive calls at most times of day, seven days a week, rather than the time it takes to handle a call and follow up when necessary with a letter to a GP or participant. We expect the total time taken to handle calls etc. to amount to no more than an hour or two a week. A pilot study will take place in January/February 2016.  The main stage of data collection will take place between August 2016 and December 2017.  There will be no telephone calls between the pilot study and the main stage.

Dates Study Phase Approximate number of weeks Estimated number of hours
Jan 2016 – Feb 2016 Pilot 8 16
Mar 2016 – July 2016 n/a n/a
Aug 2016 – Dec 2017 Main Stage 74 148


The survey doctor will need to will arrange appropriate cover at times when they are away.

Expected start date: 1st January 2016

Expected end date: 31st December 2017

Remuneration: 6% of basic salary

Essential criteria

  1. A medical degree
  2. Licence to practice medicine in the UK
  3. Medical Indemnity Insurance
  4. Excellent interpersonal skills, fluent in English reading and writing
  5. Flexibility, responsiveness and good organisation skills

Contact details

For further information on the role, or to register interest, please contact:

Emma Nixon, CLS Project Officer Tel: 0207 612 6764

The deadline for registering your interest is Friday 11th December 2015.