Amy Grove

HOME: CLAHRC West Midlands, Warwick Medical School, The University of Warwick, Coventry 

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: CLAHRC Yorkshire Humber, Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield

What I Did:

  • Examined the implementation of an economic model into Local Authority (LA) decision-making. I conducted observations, stakeholder interviews and conducted inductive thematic analysis
  • Explored the structural and behavioural circumstances that produce differences in orthopaedic outcomes using the framework of positive deviance alongside Bradford Institute for Health Research
  • Developed and facilitated two workshops to plan the re-design of Hepatitis C services with patients across Sheffield
  • Participated in the development and completion of a Delphi study to define the concept of an actionable tool to aid the research community in demonstrating the output of their research to end users.

Its Impact:

  • Gained insight into the emergent findings of my doctoral research
  • Reflected on my study through a different theoretical lens
  • I worked outside of my academic discipline and focused on networking and relationship building across a wide interdisciplinary group
  • It was the perfect opportunity to extend and refresh my transferable skills with like minded people

Outputs:

  • Publications submitted to Implementation Science and Social Science and Medicine
  • Presented my research toz academics, students and clinicians and members of the local authority.
  • Invited key colleagues from CLAHRC YH, Sheffield and Leeds Universities, and Bradford Research Institute to be members of advisory panel for my Post Doctoral Fellowship application.

 

Petra Gronholm

 

HOME: Health Services and Population Research Department, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: Imperial Patient Experience Research Centre (PERC), NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Imperial College London

What I Did:

  • Conducted independent research examining patients’ experience of care, specifically the role of psychosocial support during early patient journeys for people with breast cancer and HIV
  • This work a) examined similar questions to those in my PhD research, but within a different medical setting and patient group; b) built on methodological skills developed during my PhD research
  • I was fully integrated into my host research group, joining team meetings, departmental seminars, and the NIHR Imperial BRC open day. I also attended feedback sessions disseminating research findings to past and current patients and staff

 

Its Impact:

  • Conceptually, the exchange facilitated a broader perspective of the questions I examined in my PhD by situating these in a different context
  • Methodologically, the exchange enhanced my research skills (secondary data analysis of qualitative data, group-based analysis techniques)
  • In terms of other professional and personal development, I established collaborations with colleagues outside my home institution, had opportunities to promote my work and expertise to a new audience, and could demonstrate an adaptable working style and the ability to integrate well into a new research team and a different institutional culture

Outputs:

  • Continued collaboration following my official period with the exchange research group
  • Sharing work via departmental presentations
  • Involvement in consultations regarding future work, due to my unique position to comment on cross-cutting elements of these data

 

Kate Greenwell

HOME: NIHR Nottingham Biomedical Research Centre

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: NIHR School of Primary Care Research

What I Did:

  • Collaborated with researchers to develop an online intervention to support self-management in tinnitus (‘Tinnitus E-Programme 2.0’).
  • Received one-to-one training on how to use LifeGuide, intervention development software developed by the University.
  • Attended interesting and educational school seminars which were on a variety of health-related topics.
  • Met with several experienced researchers for valuable advice on intervention development and evaluation, and pursuing a career in e-health and health psychology.

Its Impact:

  • Enabled me to develop valuable skills in digital intervention development and evaluation.
  • Ability to develop the intervention in just three months, which would otherwise have been considerably longer and more challenging without the training and support I received.
  • Led on to a Research Fellow position in the digital health interventions team at the University.

Potentials:

  • Developed an online self-management intervention that will be tested in future research.
  • Link established several collaborations between NIHR Nottingham Biomedical Research Centre and the NIHR School of Primary Care Research, including grant applications and peer-reviewed publications.

 

Kathryn Frackrell

 

HOME: NIHR Nottingham Hearing Biomedical Research Unit, Ropewalk House

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: Leeds Musculoskeletal Biomedical Research Unit, Chapel Allerton Hospital, Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust, Leeds

What I Did:

  • Spent a month at the BRU and Leeds Psychometric Laboratory to learn about musculoskeletal conditions and measurement.
  • Competed 6 days formal training on Rasch analysis and modelling
  • Supplemented training with one-on-one sessions analysing my data using Rasch modelling statistics and specialised software
  • Observed PPI in action

Its Impact:

  • Gained valuable new knowledge and experience with measurement and complex statistics
  • Enhanced my PhD through applying new skills to validate a tinnitus questionnaire
  • Presented work at international conferences (European Conference on Psychological Assessment and International Tinnitus Research Initiative)
  • Apply training to support staff in my unit to develop and evaluate hearing questionnaires.
  • Secured a post-doctoral research fellow position in Tinnitus running an international project on tinnitus outcome measurement
  • Successful application for funding and now formally supervising a PhD student through the development of a questionnaire and teaching her what I learnt through this exchange

Outputs:

  • Plans for collaboration with Professor Anne Marie Keenan at Leeds
  • Co-authored publication with Mike Horton (a Rasch whizz)
  • Apply Rasch analysis to validate available data from other tinnitus and hearing questionnaires

 

Thomas Cowling

HOME: Imperial College London

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: University of Cambridge 

What I Did:

  • Conducted qualitative analysis of government and parliamentary documents using research methods that were new to me.
  • Had one-to-one meetings with senior colleagues to learn about their areas of research and broaden my knowledge.
  • Participated in research group meetings and social events and attended talks by researchers across the university.
  • I felt I was part of the research team which provided a great learning experience and good memories.

Its Impact:

  • Gained feedback from my exchange supervisor who collaborated in application for an NIHR Post Doctoral Fellowship and is a good source of career advice.
  • Have a new connection that would probably not have happened otherwise.
  • Developed new qualitative and policy research skills during the exchange, which benefitted the sections of my PhD focused on policy analysis.
  • Improved my CV, as the host department is particularly well regarded in my field of research.
  • Allowed me to grow personally and professionally.

Outputs:

  • Continuing to work with my exchange supervisor on the research.
  • An opportunity for a publication once the research has progressed further.

 

Jennifer Cooper

 

HOME: Warwick Medical School, Division of Health Sciences

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: University of Birmingham Primary Care Division

What I Did:

  • I developed a risk prediction model for use in colorectal cancer screening referral decisions using The Health Improvement Network (THIN) database which is a large dataset of anonymised GP records holding data for >12 million patients.
  • This individualised model combined the screening test with other risk factors such as symptoms, routine test results, diagnoses and demographic information with an aim of improving test accuracy.
  • I also carried out a methodological study as part of this research identifying acceptable dates for bowel cancer screening electronic notifications for quality assurance purposes.
  • THIN is a rich database, requiring considerable expertise for data extraction and analysis and also requires a sublicense which only a handful of Universities possess.

Its Impact:

  • Research collaboration with the University of Birmingham and Health Informatics Team.
  • Expert advice, one to one sessions on using THIN and group meetings for future studies.
  • I have learnt to analyse a large and complex GP database and at the same time learnt to use another stats package for this purpose (Stata).
  • I developed methods of extracting Read code lists, Drug code lists and Additional Health Data (blood tests etc) which could be used for future studies.
  • I have broadened my knowledge on study design considerations when using electronic health records for research.
  • The IDTE was good experience and practice for writing a grant application but on a smaller scale since you write a study protocol, budget plan, timelines, training plans and create collaborations with experts/host organisations.

Outputs:

  • In the process of writing a methodological paper using THIN which identifies when each practice begins to accept bowel cancer screening electronic notifications. This can be used for data quality assurance purposes. I will also submit a further paper for the main study which has developed a risk prediction model for colorectal cancer screening referral.
  • The interconnections between GP databases and the bowel cancer screening system could be utilised further to obtain additional information on risk for screening patients in the future.

 

Louit Thakuria

 

HOME: The Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Foundation Trust – NIHR Respiratory Biomedical Research Unit

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: The Southampton Centre for Biomedical Research – NIHR Respiratory Biomedical Research Unit

What I Did:

  • Gained unique experience in novel mass spectrometry techniques.
  • In vivo labelling of lung transplant recipients to assess the dynamic changes in surfactant biology in perioperative lung injury
  • Processed 1465 patient samples, performed 4,395 ESI-MS/MS scans.
  • Learnt how to process and interpret mass spectra
  • Developed new collaborative relationships with other researchers who were based in Southampton

Its Impact:

  • Developed new laboratory skills that were essential for my PhD thesis
  • Received exceptional support and supervision
  • Built my confidence in the laboratory (which is important for clinicians with little prior lab experience)
  • Generated multiple international presentations

Outputs:

  • Publications in preparation, and already planning follow-up projects

 

Angelos Bakogiannis

HOME: CLAHRC Northwest Coast University of Central Lancashire (UCLan)

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: CLAHRC Northwest Coast Lancaster University

What I Did:

  • I attended a postgraduate taught module on Discourse Studies (not available at UCLan) that included sessions on multimodal discourse analysis, the main methodological approach of the research project I am working on.
  • I worked under the mentorship of Professor E. Semino, an expert in cancer discourse and took advantage of a wide pool of resources available on the subject.
  • I also had the chance to attend a series of training workshops on selecting and using software for qualitative data analysis and liaise with colleagues from the Division of Health Research working on public health, health inequalities and cancer being part of the School of Public Health Research, NIHR CLAHRC NWC and the Lancaster and Liverpool Universities Collaboration for Public Health Research (LiLac).

Its Impact:

  • The exchange programme broadened my knowledge of linguistics, allowing me space to pursue work on health communication and, thus, integrate linguistics into the study of health promotion and public health, and added to my skills as a qualitative researcher.
  • It gave me the chance to establish a good network with colleagues from different scientific disciplines working on diverse but complementary areas (cancer discourse, health inequalities, public health) based at different institutions and/or organisations.

Outputs:

  • During the programme I had the chance to complete the first part of the analysis of the project I am working on.
  • The evidence produced through this work will be translated into an original article intended for publication and disseminated via presentations at national and/or international conferences and/or other events given the right opportunity.
  • Overall, the NIHR IDTE Scheme is quite a challenging but valuable programme that all PhD Trainees should apply for and despite its competitive nature I can now say (that I have been through the whole experience) that it is definitely worth the time! 

 

John Ford

HOME: University of East Anglia, East of England CLAHRC

HOST FOR EXCHANGE: School of Primary Care, University College London

What I Did:

  • Developed a research question and protocol aimed at identifying groups of older service users
  • Analysed a large dataset to answer my research question, using a technique called latent class analysis
  • Presented the results at a national conference and published them in a peer review journal
  • Discussed my NIHR Doctoral Research Fellowship with lots of people which helped develop my own research
  • Built collaborations with lots of different academics

Its Impact:

  • I’ve learnt how to do latent class analysis.
  • Gained more experience in study design and publishing
  • Received lots of good advice and ideas about my own research.
  • Gained other perspectives on thinking through different issues.

Potentials:

  • Disseminated the during an oral presentation at the Society of Academic Primary Care Conference 2016.
  • Published the findings in BMC Health Services Research