Special seminar: Involving patients and the public in research on healthcare – researcher experiences and good practices

Arrival: 12pm Seminar: 12.15pm - 1.45pm.

Tea, coffee and sandwiches provided (please register if you want these, and to guarantee a seat!)

This special seminar will discuss patient and public involvement in health research and ideas for improving researcher practices. There will be three presentations:

  • Patient and Public Involvement in board-level leadership research project - Naomi Chambers, Professor of Healthcare Management, AMBS
  • Patient and Public Involvement in health services research: Exploring the views and experiences of South Asian participants - Shoba Dawson, PhD Candidate, Institute of Population Health
  • Mistakes, Misconceptions and Missed opportunities: Public involvement in health research - Tracey Williamson, Reader (Public Involvement, Engagement & Experience), University of Salford

See below for further details.

'Patient and Public Involvement in board-level leadership research project'

About Naomi Chambers

Naomi Chambers is professor of healthcare management at Alliance Manchester Business School (AMBS) at the University of Manchester. Her wide range of teaching, advisory and research interests include health care commissioning, board governance and effectiveness in the public and charitable sectors, leadership development in the NHS, health policy and management in Europe, primary care, emergency planning, ehealth and clinical costing. Naomi has previously been director of executive education at AMBS (2006/7), head of the health management group at AMBS (2008-2013) and President of the European Health Management Association (2007-2010).


All Department of Health National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) funded research studies have a requirement to involve patients and the public. This presentation will explore how a research project on learning about board-level leadership changes made in NHS hospitals following the publication of the Francis Report is striving for best practice in the involvement of patients and the public. So far a patient-chaired advisory group has been established with 5 lay members, sourced in an open and transparent way. The first stakeholder workshop with Public and Patient Involvement (PPI) representatives working alongside academic experts has taken place to steer the study. The intention is to develop and adopt principles of co-design, provide appropriate support, and involve patients, carers & public in case study fieldwork (e.g in board observations and in sourcing views of patients). The research plans to invite external scrutiny of how PPI arrangements are operating and we are interested in further ideas about what constitutes best practice in PPI for this kind of research.

'Patient and Public Involvement in health services research: Exploring the views and experiences of South Asian participants'

About Shoba Dawson

Shoba Dawson joined the University of Manchester in March 2012 as research assistant and worked on a trial aimed for self-management support of people with stage 3 chronic kidney disease in primary care. In 2009, she completed a master's degree in Psychological Approaches to Health from the University of Leeds. From 2009 onwards Shoba has been involved in a number of research projects aimed at improving quality and patient safety in the NHS. She is now studying for a PhD within the Institute of Population Health, titled 'Patient and Public involvement in health services research: Exploring the views and experiences of people of South Asian origin and researchers’.


Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) is becoming central to the health research policy, both in the UK and internationally. The rationale for PPI in health research appears to be deep-rooted in the claim that actively involving patients and the public has the potential to improve research quality, integrity, impact and relevance. Therefore, researchers are encouraged to involve patients and the public in all stages of the research process. The last decade has witnessed an increase in the number of publications on the impact of PPI in health and social care research. However, those who are usually involved in PPI activities do not always represent people from diverse backgrounds, and there is a lack of knowledge as to why members from minority ethnic groups are not involved in health research. We undertook a systematic review to identify who gets involved, to what extent and how they are involved in health and social care research. This presentation will show the findings of the review, followed by a discussion on the preliminary findings of a qualitative study, exploring the views and experiences of South Asian participants in relation to PPI, the perceived barriers and facilitators to involvement in health research.

'Mistakes, Misconceptions and Missed opportunities: Public involvement in health research'

About Tracey Williamson

Tracey is a qualitative researcher with a clinical background in predominantly acute NHS care of older people settings, latterly as a Nurse Consultant (intermediate care & older adults). Tracey currently leads on Public Involvement in Research in the School of Nursing, Midwifery & Social Work at the University of Salford and is the lead on PPI for the NIHR Research Design Service. She has extensive experience as a Co-Applicant on large NIHR funded studies (Health Technology Devices; HTD/i4i; New & Emerging Applications of Technology) and Research Council funded studies (Economic & Social Research Council) is Primary Investigator on many more (e.g. Evaluation of Partnerships for Older People).


Understanding and application of principles of public involvement in health research have grown significantly in the last 10 –15 years. But not everyone is aware of the potential value of public involvement or how to do it well. Whilst some individuals and teams are on board with public involvement, others miss opportunities for involvement that could potentially improve the design of their research. This seminar will consider some of the issues and reasons for them whereby involvement is not undertaken well or at all. It will highlight how involvement can be enhanced. Discussion will also focus on factors that get in the way of good involvement including organisational systems and capacity building. Participants will benefit from hearing about the common pitfalls researchers have in their public involvement endeavours and ways of strengthening their personal approaches and those of their teams, students and organisations.


By the power of Tito

Register interest