Recent news of interest
'When should I worry' booklet awarded research impact prize
The ‘When should I worry?’ information booklet developed by Dr Nick Francis, PRIME Centre Wales was named winner of the Impact Award at the Health and Care Research conference held 5th October.
Dr Nick Francis developed a booklet on the management of respiratory tract infections (coughs, colds, sore throats, and ear aches) in children for use in primary care consultations, and training for clinicians on communication skills and use of the booklet.
Respiratory tract infections (RTIs) are the most common reason for children to consult in primary care. Many RTIs are self-limiting but use scarce healthcare resources. Consulting can also lead to pressure to prescribe antibiotics, and unnecessary use of antibiotics drives the spread of antibiotic resistance – a key public health concern.
Parental beliefs, fears, and expectations play an important part in both consulting behaviour and determining whether an antibiotic is prescribed. Addressing parental concerns safely through enhanced information provision could reduce use of primary care consultations and help prevent the development of antibiotic resistance.
The 'When should I worry?' booklet and training have been rapidly taken up in the NHS and abroad. The website, which includes clinician training and electronic versions of the booklet in 14 languages and regional variations, is promoted as part of many national antibiotic stewardship campaigns (e.g. the Royal College of GPs TARGET Toolkit).
Pictured are Dr Nick Francis who led the research and PRIME Centre Operations and Communications Manager Angela Watkins, who has supported ongoing roll-out of the booklet to general practices across the UK. A short video of Nick Francis explaining the premise of the booklet can be seen here.
ABACus study recognised in the South Wales Argus Health and Care Awards
Dr Kate Brain, lead for research into screening, prevention and diagnosis in primary care at PRIME Centre Wales and Wales Cancer Research Centre, reached the finals in the South Wales Argus Health and Care Awards held 19 October for the ABACus study: 'Development and pilot evaluation of the Tenovus health check: A targeted cancer awareness intervention for people from deprived communities'.
Cancer survival outcomes are lower in deprived areas including South East Wales, partly due to low awareness and negative beliefs about cancer. The project aimed to develop and evaluate a ‘health check’ (touchscreen questionnaire).
The ‘Health check’ is a community outreach intervention originally developed by Tenovus Cancer Care, with the aim of improving cancer awareness and help-seeking behavior among adults living in communities most affected by cancer. The project was undertaken to develop and pilot an adapted ‘Health Check’, working in partnership with the charity, communities and other stakeholders.
The project has ensured a partnership including local communities, health boards, public health, and third sector organisations committed to reducing socioeconomic inequalities in cancer outcomes which will impact positively on the healthcare system through improving quality of care and service delivery.
Tackling the problem of overstretched emergency departments
Two medical research teams, led by Professor Adrian Edwards, PRIME Centre Wales, Cardiff University, and Professor Jonathan Benger, University of the West England (UWE Bristol), have agreed to collaborate on complementary emergency care projects.
The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) has funded both studies to report on how using general practitioners (GPs) in emergency departments (EDs) can improve patient outcomes. Read more
PRIME Centre Wales convenes new SUPER group
PRIME Centre Wales has recently recruited members of the public and patients to join a new lay member group who will work with PRIME Centre Wales to support research activities, particularly research development.
The group is called SUPER – Service Users for Primary and Emergency care Research.
The group includes people with different backgrounds and experiences to reflect the diverse perspectives of people who live in Wales. SUPER supports PRIME Centre Wales by providing lay perspectives on developing, conducting and disseminating research about primary and emergency care services to strengthen the relevance, quality and dissemination of research on these topics. Read more
Screening prevention and diagnosis research at CRUK Early Diagnosis Research Conference 2017
Researchers from PRIME Centre Wales and Wales Cancer Research Centre working in the Screening prevention and diagnosis research workpackage recently attended the Cancer Research UK's Fourth Biannual Early Diagnosis conference held in London, 23-24 February 2017.
Dr Kate Brain presented observations from the UK Lung Screening Trial in the main session, reporting that those who went on to have further tests, or a repeat scan, were twice as likely to quit smoking, suggesting that screening offers a teachable moment in high-risk individuals.
In the early careers researchers session Dr Stephanie Smits described feasibility testing of a health check intervention as part of her PhD study. The interactive touchscreen questionnaire delivered by lay advisers to raise cancer awareness and encourage timely help-seeking among adults living in deprived communities has provided insight on participant recruitment, data collection methods, and reach to low socioeconomic groups.
Dr Grace McCutchan also presented findings from her PhD study, and was awarded for the Patient Panel Award for her poster: 'Development of a lung cancer awareness intervention targeted at socioeconomically deprived communities'. Grace’s poster described a community-based educational intervention to increase lung cancer symptom knowledge, modify negative beliefs and encourage timely symptom presentation in deprived groups by exploiting strong social networks in the community. The patient panel described it as a great example of going out into a community and working with them and getting people to talk to each other.
Presentations and further information about the conference is available at: cruk.org/EDRC
Smokers who engage with CT lung screening are more likely to quit
Lung cancer has the highest mortality of all cancers in the UK. Deaths from lung cancer could be reduced using regular CT screening (lung scans) and by helping people stop smoking.
A PRIME Centre Wales trial looking at the effect of CT lung screening on smoking cessation in smokers who have a high-risk of developing lung cancer, has found that they are more likely to quit than those who were not screened. Read more
Primary Care Research Incentive Scheme (PiCRIS) applications now being accepted
Health and Care Research Wales is pleased to announce that applications to its Primary Care Research Incentive Scheme (PiCRIS) for 2017/18 are now being accepted.
PiCRIS is a funding scheme established by the Health and Care Research Wales Support Centre. Its purpose is to increase capacity in primary care in Wales to support high-quality research and create a strong primary care research base and culture.
The scheme offers support, mentorship and funding to general practices across Wales to provide them with an incentive to make research part of daily routine. Read more and apply