Who’s up and who’s down in health and research this week?

1. 'The dog ate my whole doctor's surgery.' Yep, it's those dastardly GPs again. Ever since the weekend news that many cancers are first diagnosed in A&E we've seen the excuses just roll off their collective tongues. So much so you'd think they'd said them before. We're underfunded, underpaid. stunned by so much change, and … Continue reading Who’s up and who’s down in health and research this week?

An invitation from the Health Research Authority (HRA): #patientsasregulatorypartners

Invitation to contribute to workshops about the Health Research Authority’s  Public Involvement Strategy The Health Research Authority is running two workshops to give people interested in our strategy an opportunity to discuss it and how we put it into action. We would like these to include researchers and research funders as well as patients and … Continue reading An invitation from the Health Research Authority (HRA): #patientsasregulatorypartners

Building ‘research active’ communities for a healthier population: a clear mission for CLAHRCs, AHSNs, LCRNs

I am in Alberta, Canada.  I have been invited over to share the UK's experiences in developing public involvement in research.  As ever, it is the similarities and not the differences between our two experiences that strike you on a visit like this. More about those another time. My good friend, Derek Stewart, yesterday wrote an excellent blog with his … Continue reading Building ‘research active’ communities for a healthier population: a clear mission for CLAHRCs, AHSNs, LCRNs

Notes from a ‘small island’ in health research…..otherwise known as INVOLVE

A small island has appeared off the coast of Pakistan following the tragic earthquake there last week.  The consensus of scientific opinion is that, before long, this island will disappear without trace.  In the meantime it is an interesting curiosity, attracting quite a gaggle of geologists and geographers. I wonder if that is how INVOLVE was … Continue reading Notes from a ‘small island’ in health research…..otherwise known as INVOLVE

Survey: Cancer patients and research – the signage is there but not the opportunity to take part

You know how the story goes.  Cancer is way ahead of other conditions when it comes to patients having the opportunity to participate in clinical research.  But there's still lots of room for improvement. Today NHS England has announced the results of the annual National Cancer Patient Experience Survey.  Almost 70,000 patients took part in … Continue reading Survey: Cancer patients and research – the signage is there but not the opportunity to take part

The language of Francis, Keogh and Berwick on the NHS, in pictures.

What is the language of our health service today?  What words and phrases do we use about the NHS and what do they say about us?  More importantly, what do they say about where we want to get too? Well, one place to start perhaps is the text of the three reviews of the NHS recently completed by … Continue reading The language of Francis, Keogh and Berwick on the NHS, in pictures.

Wither research into the needs of older people [sic] ???

First off, an anecdote inspired by the Secretary of State for Health, Jeremy Hunt MP's, announcement to mark the 65th anniversary of the NHS, that all older people will have a named clinician responsible for their care. This is absolutely good news.  But it's the view down the narrow end of the telescope.  I wonder how things might … Continue reading Wither research into the needs of older people [sic] ???

250 words on Genomics England

So this feels to me as though common sense has been snatched from the jaws of defeat at the feet of academia. The initial announcement of a 'genome mapping initiative' by the Prime Minister in December was followed by not very convincing noises about the shape of things to come.  Indeed, I fired off a … Continue reading 250 words on Genomics England

It’s NIHR Friday inc. new publications, a competition and NIHR CCF makes the Grade with patients

Yes, it truly does seem as though Friday should be dubbed 'NIHR Friday' given the propensity for my erstwhile colleagues to push info out on the aforementioned day.  The clutch of interesting announcements this week include: Publication of the NIHR Annual Report for 2011-2012.  You know, I'm sorry if this offends some people but I'm … Continue reading It’s NIHR Friday inc. new publications, a competition and NIHR CCF makes the Grade with patients

Our NHS: If there is a patient on board could they please make themselves known to the cabin crew

The NHS would appear to be suffering an in-flight emergency. It is locked on auto-pilot. The cabin crew are unsure what to do. A few are close to panic. The nature of the problem is unclear. The causes indeterminate. No one was trained for this. Cabin crew announcements become more insistent and louder by the … Continue reading Our NHS: If there is a patient on board could they please make themselves known to the cabin crew

Comment: The Sherpa’s story and its relevance to public involvement in health research

I am indebted to a good friend and colleague of mine who, some time ago, sent me this BBC News story from last year.  It reports on the rising concerns among Himalayan Sherpas about the lack of regard being shown towards their needs and the environment as scientists tromp all over the local geography.  To the … Continue reading Comment: The Sherpa’s story and its relevance to public involvement in health research

How a Dame and the Great British Public might bring an end to the patient data pantomime…

The Health Service Journal (HSJ) has an 'exclusive' interview today with Dame Fiona Caldicott.  Dame Fiona has been chairing a review - of information governance in health and social care - 'Caldicott2.'  Its report and recommendations are due out in just a few short weeks.You have to subscribe to HSJ to read the full interview … Continue reading How a Dame and the Great British Public might bring an end to the patient data pantomime…

How your NHS Trust works in mysterious ways when it comes to clinical research

Today the NIHR Clinical Research Network Co-ordinating Centre (NIHR CRN CC) has published the results of a 'mystery shopper' exercise it conducted last year to investigate how well NHS Trusts provide information about clinical research.  You may have seen a piece in last Sunday's Observer which trailed this work and you may hear about it … Continue reading How your NHS Trust works in mysterious ways when it comes to clinical research

Details about ‘Rare Disease Day’ of Action – 28th Feb 2013

The following was sent to Rare Disease UK members and I thought I should pass it on as it explains what is happening and how you can get involved this year. All except the first link won't work as I am mobile but the first URL address will take you to where all this stuff is … Continue reading Details about ‘Rare Disease Day’ of Action – 28th Feb 2013

In the Hunt for a health Ofsted

The Secretary of State for Health, Jeremy Hunt, spoke at the King's Fund annual conference today.  By all accounts it was impassioned and well-received.  There then followed what sounded like a lively panel discussion about patient experience (see their twitter feed). Hunt's announcement of a review into the idea of establishing an 'Ofsted' rating system for hospitals … Continue reading In the Hunt for a health Ofsted

Royal College looks to boost child health research with children’s charter

I am prone to beating up our Royal Colleges for one reason or another.  But, over the last few years, I have grown to admire and respect the work of one of their number in particular - the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH). Yesterday, RCPCH launched a new report entitled 'Turning the Tide: … Continue reading Royal College looks to boost child health research with children’s charter

Text of speech to INVOLVE 2012 – Public involvement in research: would you like that shaken or stirred?

Public involvement in research: would you like that shaken or stirred? So, ladies and gentlemen, there I was on Saturday afternoon, at the pictures, watching the new James Bond movie, ‘Skyfall.’  This was background research for today you understand; listening to Adele dolefully sing: ‘This is the end’ which is the opening line of the … Continue reading Text of speech to INVOLVE 2012 – Public involvement in research: would you like that shaken or stirred?

Health Research Authority gets to work on speeding-up research

So there I was yesterday afternoon,  with my biology 'o'level a distant memory to put it mildly, speaking at the annual NIHR Senior Investigators Meeting thinking: 'how did I ever get into this?'  The event brings together the very best of NIHR's  researchers for an update on what's happening across health research.  And this was mentioned … Continue reading Health Research Authority gets to work on speeding-up research

NHS leaders on public involvement in services and research

Just thought I would pass on these two pieces by Candy Morris, Research Champion for the NHS, and Mike Farrar, CEO of the NHS Confederation, respectively, about the importance of public involvement in the NHS. Candy's article appears in the Department of Health's regular bulletin 'The Month,' and focuses on public involvement in clinical research. … Continue reading NHS leaders on public involvement in services and research