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Patients, Carers and the Public

The Network is committed to actively involving and engaging patients, carers and the public in all aspects of its activity in order to improve the delivery of clinical research in the NHS and beyond. 

Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement (PPIE) representatives and Research Champions work with teams across the region to  support research delivery and raise awareness of opportunities to be involved in research. PPIE initiatives include:

  • Contributing to NIHR campaigns such as International Clinical Trials Day (20 May)
  • Gathering feedback from research participants
  • Providing learning and development opportunities for patients, carers, the public and research staff

Be Part of Research

Would you like to get involved in health and care research?

Every minute in the UK, someone is diagnosed with a disease or a condition. The treatment and support they will receive will, at some point, have been informed by research. Whether it’s testing a new medicine, a new surgery procedure or scan, or trying healthier lifestyle choices to prevent disease, everyone has an important role to play – if they want to.

There are lots of different types of research. Research usually involves examining and observing people with different conditions and sometimes comparing them with people who don't have the condition. It can also involve research on samples of blood or other tissues, or tests such as scans or X-rays. Sometimes it might involve surveys or interviews.

Be Part of Research

Be Part of Research is a service that makes it easy for the public to learn about and search for research studies. Discover how research studies are designed, what happens when you decide to take part and the importance of taking part. You can:

● Use the search tool to find current research studies happening right now

● Find studies taking place near you

● Filter results easily by age, health condition etc

● Use the site on desktop or mobile

● Download, save or print the full study details so you can talk to your doctor, nurse or healthcare professional.

Once you’ve found a study, you can see all the details including who to contact and ask to take part.

Whether you have been diagnosed with a condition or not, everyone can take part in research. Find a study that’s right for you.

This animation tells you more.

Interested in taking part in dementia research studies?

Register with Join Dementia Research so that you can be told when a study starts in your area and the researchers are looking for people just like you. There's no obligation to take part in any study, but by registering, you’ll find out when new opportunities become available. The service is delivered in partnership by the NIHR, Alzheimer’s Research UK, Alzheimer's Society and Alzheimer Scotland.

Patient Stories

Research Champions

Our Research Champions, including members of the Young Persons' Steering Group, (YPSG) work with teams across the region to improve research delivery, awareness and opportunities for the public to be involved in research in the West Midlands..  For more information on becoming a Champion, contact mohammed.shaikh@nihr.ac.uk or if you are interested in how our YPSG can help you, please email carly.tibbins@nihr.ac.uk

Read a profile of Research Champion Anne.

The Network also has Professional Research Champions - read Joanna's Story

Participant in Research Experience Survey

Our Participant in Research Experience Survey is currently underway. You can ask your Consultant, Doctor, Nurse or GP for a copy if you would like to take part or you can do so online. Your feedback will help us to make future studies a better experience for people who take part. Thank You!

If you have any queries about the Survey, please email mary-anne.darby@nihr.ac.uk

Our Commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

We have partnered with clinicians an academics to set up systematic working to ensure that the voices of the local under-served populations are at the forefront of research in the region. A group focused on racial disparity and ethnicity; West Midlands Race, Diversity and Inclusion Research Group (WMRDIRG) has been established, recognising the need not to only connect with patients via primary and secondary care, but with local under-served communities and ethnic minority populations of the region.

During the pandemic many misconceptions about both COVID-19 and emerging vaccines were prevalent within the broader and ethnic minority communities.  This WMRDIRG came together to look at ways of addressing these issues and established engagement with key partners across research and academic organisations. The WMRDIRG continues to support the equality, diversity and inclusion in research agenda across the region and plays a key role in supporting clinicians and academics consider race and ethnicity in health and social care research.

In addition, the CRN West Midlands Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Public Research Champions Group, a group of volunteers, continued to meet during the COVID-19 pandemic.  During the pandemic the group expanded its support towards national and local community engagement and equality, diversity and inclusion in research projects.

As part of our Entry Plan, the Network is actively discussing how equality, diversity and inclusion in research can be coordinated across all the NIHR centres in the West Midlands to ensure that there is support for all communities and groups in the region.