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BSW Research Hub Newsletter - Summer 2022

Welcome to the summer edition of the BSW Research Hub quarterly e-newsletter.


About us

The Bath and North East Somerset Swindon and Wiltshire (BSW) Research Hub supports all aspects of applied health research and innovation involving local primary and community NHS and HSC organisations. We can help with preparing research proposals and obtaining relevant approvals, to advising on involving the public in research. Find out more about our services.

The team


Research RESET

The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC), NHS England and NIHR CRN are working to revitalise the NHS research portfolio through implementing the Research Reset.

The objective of the Research Reset is to give as many studies as possible the chance of completing and yielding results, generating the evidence needed to improve care and sustain the health and care system.

With the overarching aim being to recover capacity and capability to deliver clinical research in the NHS and health and care system to time and target.

However, it will require amendments or closure of studies that are not viable in the current context.

Research reset involves the following actions:

  • Sponsors and CIs haven been asked to review their research portfolio, in collaboration with funders.
  • To aid sponsor decision making, the NIHR CRN provided lists of ‘for action’ studies to sponsors in early May 2022 (this will be on an ongoing process and lists will be updated).
  • Sponsors must provide feedback on their intended approach to address the ‘for action’ studies.
  • Reset Oversight Group monitors progress and impact using data on ‘for action’ studies, data on the overall progress of the portfolio and intelligence gathered from across the sector.

The scope is currently limited to research studies being delivered in the NHS in England. The Devolved Administrations will take forward separate policy decisions and processes to address the situation in each nation.

Find out more about Research RESET

New toolkit launched to improve dementia care for South Asian people

People living with dementia from South Asian communities will benefit from improved, culturally sensitive support, thanks to a new online toolkit launched, during Dementia Action Week, by researchers from the Universities of the West of England (UWE Bristol), Bradford, Bath and Wolverhampton; and collaborators including the Race Equality Foundation and the Dementia Alliance for Culture and Ethnicity. It was funded by the NIHR’s Research for Patient Benefit Programme.

Hosted by the Race Equality Foundation, the toolkit will provide enhanced care for members of South Asian communities – many of whom receive significantly less effective dementia care from statutory services compared to their counterparts from White British communities. People from South Asian communities are at greater risk of developing dementia but are less likely to access all points of the care pathway – and more likely to present in crisis and/or at a later stage.

They are also more likely to face barriers including a late or missed diagnosis, reduced access to treatments, and inappropriate or inadequate support coupled with problems caused by language barriers. They often rely on local, community-led organisations for support.

Alarmingly, the number of people from South Asian communities with dementia is expected to increase sevenfold by 2051, due in part to inequalities in service provision and the increased risk of other health factors associated with dementia. For White British people, the rise is expected to be more modest, albeit sizeable, doubling over the same time period.

Combatting the current one-size-fits-all model, the South Asian Dementia Pathway Toolkit (ADaPT) aims to provide more accessible, tailored resources enabling services to provide more culturally appropriate care. Designed to address the uphill struggle that many people from South Asian backgrounds face, the toolkit includes short films, animations, awareness raising materials, assessments and post-diagnostic support – all of which have been culturally and linguistically adapted for people from South Asian communities.

To ensure the toolkit was designed to meet the needs of these communities, public participants from South Asian communities (along with staff from voluntary and statutory services) were asked to share their experiences and feedback about the current level - or lack - of support and to identify what more was needed.

Co-applicant on the grant, Dr Paula Smith from Bath’s Department of Psychology was involved in interviews and workshops with participants from voluntary and statutory services, as well as individuals who live with and support those with dementia from South Asian communities.

She said:

This is an important project that brings to life better understanding of the experience of people from South Asian backgrounds who are impacted by dementia. By listening to them, and by working with voluntary and statutory providers of services, we have been able to identify important tools and insights, and to bring them together in this online resource. “We hope that this will be a useful tool in helping to identify culturally sensitive and appropriate support which can benefit those living with, and supporting people, with dementia from South Asian communities in the years to come.

Find out more about the toolkit.

Celebrating #Red4Research Day

Friday 17th June 2022 was #Red4Research - which aimed to get as many people as possible wearing red to show their support and appreciation for all those participating, undertaking and supporting COVID-19 and other research.

People from all over the country celebrated #Red4Research. Locally, Dr Jo Daniels, Clinical Psychologist and Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Bath, celebrated the day with a video thanking all those who have supported her COVID Research. Jo has conducted research into the impact of the COVID pandemic on shielders and their families; and the difficulties frontline Doctors faced during the COVID pandemic. Watch her video and find out more about her research.

RICE celebrated #Red4Research with Captain Dog. Despite the challenges of the COVID pandemic, RICE has continued to undertake research, including an Alzheimer’s disease infusion and tablet trial, COVID/Flu vaccine studies, Parkinson’s disease trials, and an online dementia app project.

Find out more about #Red4Research.

TrialBlazers Campaign

The NIHR recently launched a two-week campaign called TrialBlazers to celebrate this year’s International Clinical Trials Day that took place on Friday 20th May. The campaign recognised the life-changing contribution made to health and care research by people who take part in research and called on more people across the UK to become a TrialBlazer and take part in research.

Newly released data from the NIHR shows that 1,413,553 participants took part in over 4,900 NIHR delivered studies in 2021/2022* across the United Kingdom.

Read more about the TrialBlazers campaign.

Spotlight on

Hanorah Saliba, Research & Respiratory Nurse at Trowbridge Health Centre

I have been involved in Primary Care research, commercially and academically since April 2007, prior to this I worked in the private sector before embracing the NHS. Trowbridge Health Centre (THC) was formerly Bradford Road Medical Centre & Adcroft Surgery pre merge in 2017. The purpose-built Health Centre boasts an impressive Research Unit which is a good selling point to potential sponsors as we can adequately facilitate a variety of studies.

My role of research nurse/coordinator is very varied and never dull which keeps things fresh and challenging. In addition to research, I also have a respiratory qualification and work as part of a team of 4 respiratory nurses at the surgery. This qualification helps with securing respiratory studies that may require spirometry from an ARTP accredited practitioner and can be attractive to sponsors when completing a feasibility.

Day to day activities include performing patient visits, recruiting to open studies, facilitating contracts, arranging site selection meetings/monitoring visits, answering data queries, electronic data entry, building & performing searches to aid recruitment alongside setting up 'Protocols' on the electronic system for the same purpose and reporting any SAEs/Endpoints. The list is endless and ever changing.

We assess new study opportunities & perform feasibilities as robustly as possible to sell our site and experience. At any one time, we have about 10 – 15 studies running at various stages We collaborate with Bradford-on-Avon as 1 of 6 ‘Inspire Sites’ for Pfizer – this programme enables Pfizer to help bring more clinical trials to the UK, supporting the governments ambition to make the UK a world leader in life sciences. Find us on Twitter @WestWiltsRG

I'm responsible for setting up a collaboration with a neighbouring Primary Care site within our PCN, to recruit patients from their practice to our studies if deemed feasible. This has been very successful and offers their patients the opportunity to participate in Research they would otherwise have no access to. We also act as a PIC with another neigbouring research active site to aid recruitment.

THC was part of the very successful Research Network – BARONET and I headed this up for 12 months until it disbanded in 2018 due to the merging of sites, closure of others and PI/research Nurse retirements. Alot of our existing commercial sponsor relationships were formed during its reign. Our site holds regular in-house meetings to discuss research, what’s new, trouble shoot and highlight any successes/issues

My job includes invoicing, funding applications and keeping on top of the financial side of things alongside managing our off-site archiving needs and working to our in-house Research SOPs which I am responsible for alongside the PI for reviewing. To be a successful research site, you need to be able to 'think outside the box', adapt and have an eye for thoroughness along with a side of competitiveness!

The COVID-19 pandemic has shed a spotlight on the resilience of healthcare systems, and their ability to cope efficiently and effectively with unexpected crises. Whilst it curtailed some academic, industry, and government basic science and clinical research, or redirected research to COVID-19, researchers found ways to work differently and drive the work forward. No better example is the development & roll-out of the COVID vaccine in the UK and I am proud to work in this industry

Regulatory updates

Rethinking ethics review: online survey running from 13 June until 23 September

The HRA has launched a public conversation about how research ethics review could be changed to make it better for researchers, ethics committee members and people taking part in research. The HRA is seeking reactions to its ideas for making ethics review more innovative and efficient, whilst retaining public trust.

They have developed ideas which they believe could help overcome current challenges. These are to:

  • introduce a tool to support researchers to think more ethically
  • use ethics review by expert Research Ethics Service staff
  • delegate ethics review for studies within a programme of research

Patients, research participants, researchers, organisations, and institutions which oversee research are all being asked to complete an online survey between now and Friday 23 September.

Find out more and access the online survey.

Research support

Would you like the Research Design Service (RDS) to review your draft application prior to submission?

The RDS Project Review Committee (PRC) provides an excellent opportunity for you to obtain detailed feedback on your draft grant application prior to submission to the funding body. The panel of RDS advisers and public contributors brings the benefit of seeing the proposal with “fresh eyes”, replicating as far as possible the way the real funding committee will consider the application, and will provide detailed feedback and suggestions for improving the competitiveness of the application.

The PRC meets on the third Tuesday of each month - if you would like to arrange for your application to be reviewed, book early to secure a slot. Find out more about the RDS PRC.

Training and events

Primary Care Academic CollaboraTive (PACT)

What is PACT?

A UK-wide network of enthusiastic primary care health professionals that collectively design and take part in well-designed high impact primary care research and quality improvement projects that seek to improve patient care.

Who is PACT?

PACT is a community of healthcare professionals working in GP practices across the UK who are interested in improving primary care. PACT has a core committee of ten GP trainees and newly qualified GPs from across the UK, who will support PACT members with ideas for projects that can be delivered through the PACT network. They also have a senior advisory group made up of experienced GPs, senior academics, a Clinical Research Network representative, and a deanery representative to make sure the projects are well thought out and meaningful.

Find out more information and join PACT.

Bristol Health Partners Conference 2022

  • Date: Tuesday 4th October 2022 Time: 12pm to 4pm
  • Where: MShed in Bristol.

BHP will be celebrating 10 years of achievements and looking to the future, by bringing together a diverse audience face-to-face to hear about work to date and forge new connections.

The Conference brings together Health Integration Team (HIT) members, stakeholders, health and care leaders, researchers and other interested people and organisations. Previous conferences have been attended by over 100 academics, health and care professionals, commissioners, members of the public and others from organisations across Bristol, South Gloucestershire, and North Somerset.

NHS England’s Medical Director will be speaking, as well as the Chair and Director of Bristol Health Partners. It will also be an excellent opportunity to speak with BHP’s Health Integration Teams about their work and how you can get involved.

Book your place at the conference.

Funding opportunities

Research for Social Care – Competition 5

Closes: 1pm on 14 September 2022

RfSC funds research which generates evidence to improve, expand and strengthen the way social care is delivered for users of care services, carers, and the public. Individual projects will be funded up to £350,000.

Applications through RfSC should have:

  • A clear trajectory to immediate and long-term social care benefits
  • A strong link with service users, carers and organisations which provide social care services
  • A team consisting of social care researchers, professionals/practitioners, carers and service users.

Proposals should also demonstrate appropriate research expertise, and teams should have a track record of relevant published research. RfSC invites applications from higher education institutions, charities, local councils and relevant third sector organisations. Find out more about the RfSC.

Harkness Fellowships in Health Care Policy and Practice 2022

Closes: 1pm on 1 November 2022

The Commonwealth Fund's Harkness Fellowships for 2023-24 provide a unique leadership development opportunity for mid-career research professionals who are committed to advancing health care policy and practice.

Co-funded in the UK by the NIHR, and Health Foundation, the Harkness Fellowships in Health Care Policy and Practice fund successful applicants to spend a year in the United States (US) conducting internationally comparative research with mentorship from leading US experts.

The Harkness Fellowship provides dedicated research funding to allow Fellows to:

  • gain an in-depth understanding of the US healthcare system and policy landscape
  • engage in a series of leadership development activities
  • build a robust network for cross-national exchange and collaboration

Successful applicants will also become a member of the NIHR Academy - a community that provides access to events, networking, leadership development and online training.

Find out more about the Harkness Fellowship.


If you have any questions, please contact us.

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