PPI Friday

It seems that my Friday blog has become dominated in recent weeks by postings about patient and public involvement. So be it. But before anyone jumps in to criticise, let me assure you of my belief that it is a 24/7 activity!

Friday is often quite an interesting day for news. Press officers will tell you that 5pm on Friday is a dreaded time because Government’s often choose it as a time to get the unpalatable out. But it also seems the case that many organisations will choose it as the day to squeeze out bits of news which they regard as low-impact.  Yet, often, these little nuggets merit a much wider wider airing.

The National Institutes for Health Research (NIHR) today flags up a report by the Manchester Biomedical Research Centre of an exercise it had done to map and explore the challenges and opportunities for PPI. I thought it a rather good summary.  Given the public attitudes survey earlier in the week I was interested in the reference made to how little local public and media interest they perceived in the work of the Centre.  We do tend to focus on the national don’t we when it comes to public engagement often forgetting the importance of local communities and press?

I suppose the report sparked my interest because the Manchester and other Centres are a key aspect of NIHR’s future development and work and I had often wondered how we are to get them to work closely with patients and the public.  Good to know that they are also thinking in the same way.  [By the way, if you doubt the strategic importance of these Centres then you should just check out the stream of news from the Manchester one for this week] 

Anyway, the thirst among the Centre’s researchers for help and support to improve public involvement is very cheering.  ‘Thirst’ seems an apt word on which to end the week doesn’t it?  Talking of which I actually made a cup of tea for my team today, how good a boss am I?

Have a good weekend.

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