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70@70 NIHR Senior Nurse and Midwife Research Leader Programme


Published: 31 October 2019

Version: 1

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In 2018, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) recognised the huge, and as yet untapped, potential for senior nurses and midwives to contribute to a number of key priorities for the NIHR. In response, we introduced the 70@70: The NIHR Senior Nurse and Midwife Research Leader Programme.

The 70@70 programme (funded by DHSC, through the NIHR) is aimed at senior nurse and midwife clinical leaders with demonstrable experience of building a research-led care environment for patients and who have a record of developing existing practice, working within and contributing to a research rich environment.

We understand the importance of increasing the visibility of the research nurse and research midwife workforce and want to capitalise on their vital contribution to research delivery. We are proud to have developed the 70@70 programme to work towards overcoming some of these challenges and drive real change across research systems. 

70@70 Programme purpose

The Senior Nurse and Midwife Research Leader Programme aims to strengthen the research voice and influence of nurses and midwives in health and social care settings. 

It will also enhance the connection between the research voice and perspectives of NHS nurses and midwives with the NIHR research agendas. The developing community would comprise of selected senior clinical nurses and midwives who are committed to championing the promotion of an embedded research active culture among nursing and midwifery staff in their organisations. They will possess the skills and knowledge to encourage and support innovation and research implementation in pursuit of the delivery of high quality, evidenced based nursing, midwifery and healthcare practice.

The programme funding will support 0.4 FTE salary costs for each member of the community for a period of three years. 

70@70 Role outline

Each Senior Nurse and Midwife Research Leader will be a recognised research leader in the health and care system and key elements of their role will be to:

  • promote the importance of a vibrant integrated research culture in health and care to improve quality of care and health outcomes
  • act as a proactive champion for developing nurse and midwife research capacity and capability supporting an integrated research delivery culture in their care setting
  • encourage research collaborations and the interdisciplinary sharing of research knowledge and skills (dissemination) throughout their care setting
  • actively link with the wider work of the NIHR, including its future development
  • support the development of future research leaders with the NIHR Academy
  • support the identification of research priorities as they relate to front line nursing and midwifery practice issues and ensure they have a “route to visibility” in the research landscape.

70@70 Programme period

The initial programme will be for a three year period and will support protected time for the individual to develop the research capacity and capability of the workforce particularly the nurse and midwifery workforce. They will also ensure direct care research priorities are identified and used to inform NIHR Commissioning activity.

70@70 Programme outcomes

  • Significant enhancement of the profile of the NIHR among nurses and midwives, including the substantial contribution of the NIHR to the nursing & midwifery workforce, clinical research nurse and midwife development
  • A cadre of leaders to input, advise and influence NIHR decision making on research that relates more closely to nursing, midwifery and care quality issues
  • Active involvement of key practice and quality focused senior leaders in health and care services in the prioritisation of the NIHR’s work
  • A vibrant community of clinical research leaders which will better link the research assets of organisations
  • An improved pipeline of nurse and midwife researchers based in environments that are more receptive to the acceleration of key findings into practice.