The collaborative workshop involved people without prior research experience throughout the research cycle.
Researchers, practioners, patients, members of public and interested stakeholders made up the 95 attendees for our virtual autumn Collaborative Learning Event. Led by our Collaborative Learning and Capacity Building theme they heard first-hand updates from researchers on the work being carried out by NIHR ARC NWL and the impact it is having.
A diverse learning opportunity
Exploring our research themes
Bridging the gaps
Improvement Leader Fellowship graduation
Her tireless work spanning public health practice, policy and research was recognised in October 2021 with the Faculty of Public Health (FPH) award which recognises her exceptional contribution to improving the public’s health through research.
Leading the conversation
An ‘outstanding contribution’
We support people from all backgrounds to take an interest and engage with our applied health research and we enable researchers to take the next step in their research career. We do this because research is richer and more meaningful for having more people involved.
Evidence based practice
'A new perspective'
Follow your interests
Research from NIHR ARC Northwest London showcased in nationally significant applied health and care research publication
Two case studies showcasing research from NIHR ARC NWL have been featured in a newly released flagship document that demonstrates the impact of National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) funded applied research to transform health and care across England.
Accident and emergency tracker – Emergency care and acute illness theme
My Medication Passport (MMP) - Management of long term conditions theme
Collection of case studies
What award-winning co-production looks like and how we go further
Sandra Jayacodi is a public contributor and Chair of the NIHR Imperial Biomedical Research Centre Public Advisory Panel. To mark Co-production Week she discusses her experiences of being a service user on an award-winning co-produced research project.
As someone who has previously experienced mental health problems, taking part in a co-produced research project on the relationship between mental and physical ill-health was a transformative experience. For two years I and others contributed our lived experience to an award-winning project.
Co-production means involving people who can benefit from research in shaping it from the very outset, as equal partners. It leads to higher quality, more impactful research, better focused on the needs of those it should ultimately benefit. The research I took part in reflected these principles, so it’s worth looking back on what that project got right.
What co-production done well looks like
I was one of three service users co-producing the SHINE project. The project aimed to improve the physical healthcare assessment offered to people admitted to the mental health wards at St Charles Hospital in Ladbroke Grove by collaborating with service users. Before I became a member of the project team, I knew very little about co-production or Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement (PPIE) but I did know that I wanted to share my lived experience of mental ill health to improve things for others.
I was pleasantly surprised by the way that I was included in all discussions about the project. When I made suggestions, they were taken up, or responded to. It wasn’t just my own experience that I drew upon - I recommended a resource from the British Heart Foundation that could be integrated in the project instead of the team creating one from scratch. There was a definite feedback loop between my contribution and changes to the projects.
The researchers clearly wanted to involve the service users. Whenever I went to a meeting I knew they would have answers for me! And when others were less confident about speaking in meetings, the researchers would make sure to get a contribution from them individually afterwards. Over time the team became like a family.
There are always limits to the influence you can have over any research project. For example, I was keen for clinicians working on the project to have discussions with patients about the side effects of drugs they are prescribed. For whatever reason, it wasn’t possible to make this a part of the project.
But overall, to be in the wards, talking to the patients, working with the staff, integrated in all stages of the project - that felt special. I’m proud that the SHINE project resulted in a patient-held physical healthcare record for people on mental health wards.
Can we take co-production further?
It’s definitely the case that proper co-production isn’t easy or always appropriate for every research project. At the same time, I feel that in allowing co-production to be defined loosely, we don’t do justice to what it should be. Being invited somewhere in the middle or at the end of a project to consult on a plain English summary or a leaflet isn’t true co-production in my view.
The NIHR Centre for Engagement and Dissemination has an important role to play in moving co-production forwards. Its resources are a good guide for researchers thinking about how they can integrate co-production into research and include many other examples of co-production working in practice.
We still have a way to go to make co-production central to health research. Let’s include more people with lived experience in the whole research process- there are many more like me out there.
The Shine project was a collaboration between the NIHR Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) North West London, Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust and the Health Foundation.
Published 06/07/2021 on www.nihr.ac.uk/blog/what-award-winning-co-production-looks-like-and-how-we-go-further/28066
The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.
What happened to English NHS hospital activity during the COVID-19 pandemic?
The COVID-19 pandemic has had profound effects on healthcare systems around the world, including the UK National Health Service (NHS).
As a result of a reorganisation of services and changes in the care needs and care-seeking behaviour of patients, the use of hospitals in England has changed drastically. However, exactly how much and what type of care has taken place, and the extent to which these patterns vary across different groups of individuals, has not yet been comprehensively documented. Better evidence on this is required to address backlogs in care, and to understand to which groups resources should be particularly targeted after the acute phase of the pandemic is over.
In this briefing note, we use administrative hospital data from across the NHS in England to describe how the use of inpatient (elective and emergency) and outpatient hospital care in 2020 compared with that in the previous year. We first show how overall levels of care changed in the period after the start of the pandemic in March until the end of December 2020 and then examine how changes in activity varied across regions and clinical specialties. We finally examine how these patterns differ across patient age, ethnicity and local area deprivation.
Our findings suggest a complex response to the pandemic driven by large drops in supply for non-COVID services and demand-side responses to the pandemic. They also underline the need to increase available resources to address care backlogs and to direct resources to the people, local areas and groups that have been most affected.
Some key findings were:
• Between March and December 2020, there were 2.9 million (34.4%) fewer elective (planned) inpatient admissions, 1.2 million (21.4%) fewer non-COVID emergency inpatient admissions, and 17.1 million (21.8%) fewer outpatient appointments compared with the same period in 2019.
• There was a sharp reduction in hospital activity in March 2020. Although emergency inpatient admissions had almost returned to their 2019 level by August, elective and outpatient volumes remained substantially below their 2019 levels for the rest of 2020. Emergency inpatient admissions began to decline again (relative to 2019) in September.
Assessing the long-term safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines
Professor Azeem Majeed
NIHR ARC NWL Director
Head of the Department of Primary Care & Public Health at Imperial College London
Assessing the long-term safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines - Azeem Majeed, Marisa Papaluca, Mariam Molokhia, 2021
Vaccines for COVID-19 were eagerly awaited, and their rapid development, testing, approval and implementation are a tremendous achievement by all: scientists, pharmaceutical companies, drugs regulators, politicians and healthcare professionals; and by the patients who have received them. But because these vaccines are new, we lack long-term data on their safety and efficacy.
In surveys of people who define themselves as ‘vaccine hesitant’, this lack of long-term data is one of the main reasons given for their beliefs. Hence, providing this information is a public health priority and could help reassure vaccine-hesitant people that receiving a COVID-19 vaccine is the right choice for them. Emerging data from the UK and elsewhere are confirming the benefits of COVID-19 vaccines and this is one of the factors that is leading to a reduction in vaccine hesitancy in the UK population.
The news that two UK recipients of the COVID-19 Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA vaccine suffered severe allergic reactions on the first day of its rollout illustrates the need for accurate recording of any adverse events following administration of COVID-19 vaccines. These allergic reactions were unexpected and led to procedures being put in place to prevent further episodes of anaphylaxis after vaccine administration. Further concerns were raised after a high death rate was reported in elderly vaccine recipients in Norway. More recently, an association has been reported between the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and clotting disorders, which led to some countries restricting the use of the vaccine in younger people.