Menu Close

RDF19 Poster Details

RDF19 Poster Detail

Poster Title 
We are the Research Champions!

Community based Mental Health Trusts have a challenge in being able to access their service users for research since their services tend to have a wide geographical spread. This is further constrained by protocols describing patient identification and recruitment can only be done by staff from within clinical care team(s).

In our Research Development Unit (RDU) we looked at these issues and discussed how we could improve access to research for our service users. We established that we would ideally need a set of research eyes and ears in each service/location – a network.

We created our Research Champions network in 2018 to bring together staff interested in ‘dipping their toe’ into research and being our first point of contact for their service. The Champions are made up of various clinical and non-clinical who are knowledgeable about their service and want to support and raise research awareness.

We hold tri-annual Research Champion events (3 times each year) where the members choose the key learning and sharing content; which keeps it relevant to them. Ideas are then taken forward by the RDU, eg research noticeboards in waiting areas. We have also co-produced a description of the activities that a Research Champion may undertake, alongside support and development opportunities they can access from the RDU so that we have a clear definition of the role.

We have Champions spanning various services and this has increased the turnaround time for expressions of interest, raised awareness of research in services which were previously not research active and had a direct impact on recruitment to studies. We have increased awareness of research amongst staff overall in the Trust and this undoubtedly has had a positive effect on increasing opportunities that are available to our service users.

  • SHSC Research Champions, Sheffield Health & Social Care NHS Foundation Trust
  • SWANN, Wendy (Research Manager: Sheffield Health & Social Care NHS Foundation Trust)
  • HORSPOOL, Michelle (Senior Research Manager: Sheffield Health & Social Care NHS Foundation Trust)
  • n/a
Sheffield Health & Social Care NHS Foundation Trust