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The Modelling and Simulation in Healthcare Network (MASHNet), led by PenCHORD Director, Professor Martin Pitt, has been awarded £19,500 from The Health Foundation to set up a UK-wide initiative to promote the effective use of operational research (OR) and advanced analytic methods in health and social care services.
The PLETHORA Project (Planning for Effective Transformation of Healthcare using Operational Research and Advanced Analytics) will develop a structured plan to build the capacity and expertise needed to apply these key research techniques within the NHS.
Combining the skills and experience of clinicians, academics and technologists from across the country, PLETHORA aims to raise awareness of...Read more
A large-scale pilot clinical trial has been conducted by a network of trainee anaesthetists across the South West for the first time, thanks to support from the South West Anaesthesia Research Matrix (SWARM) and PenCLAHRC.
The trial was designed to assess whether a comprehensive oral hygiene regime could decrease the risk of post-operative pneumonia for patients undergoing major elective abdominal surgery.
Funded by an NIAA grant, the randomised control trial ‘CUPPA’ (Comprehensive moUth care and Post-operative PneumoniA) was delivered across six NHS hospital sites by more than 45 trainee clinicians specialising in anaesthesia, all members of the SWARM collaboration.
Data collection and analysis...Read more
Dr Nick Axford joins PenCLAHRC this week as Associate Professor in Health Services and will be working on a variety of projects with a focus on child health and implementation science.
Nick comes to PenCLAHRC from the Dartington Social Research Unit (DSRU), where he held the post of Senior Researcher and Head of What Works. Whilst at the DSRU he specialised in developing and evaluating evidence-based interventions and defining and measuring child well-being.
Nick’s work has always had a cross-disciplinary emphasis, reflecting the DSRU's focus on children's services, including social care, health, education and youth justice. In the last five years he has...Read more
Stimulating the brain by taking on leadership roles at work or staying on in education helps people stay mentally healthy in later life, according to new research.
Led by the University of Exeter and published in the journal PLOS Medicine, the large-scale study used data from more than 2,000 mentally fit people over the age of 65, and examined the theory that experiences in early or mid-life which challenge the brain make people more resilient to changes resulting from age or illness – they have higher 'cognitive reserve'.
The study found that people with higher levels of reserve are more likely to stay mentally...Read more
Staff from NHS Trusts across the South West came together with PenCLAHRC researchers to celebrate the success of an innovative programme aimed at tackling problems faced by the health service.
The Health Service Modelling Associates (HSMA) programme, run by our operational research team PenCHORD, is designed to embed the skills and knowledge needed to develop and use computer models to support decision making within the NHS.
The pilot programme culminated in a showcase event, held at the University of Exeter Medical School yesterday. Participants presented their project findings and shared how both they and their organisations have benefited from the scheme.
Over the past year,...Read more
Video-calls using new technological devices are being used with older people in care environments across Devon and Cornwall to reduce loneliness and isolation, thanks to a PenCLAHRC-funded PhD project.
Sonam Zamir, a PhD student at PenCLAHRC, and Professor Ray Jones from Plymouth University have been working with care homes and hospitals since April 2015 to help older people get set up with Skype.
The Skype on Wheels project means older people can now stay better connected with distant relatives without getting out of bed, or needing to learn a new technology.
A Skype on Wheels device, developed by Professor Ray Jones and Plymouth...Read more
The impact of vibrations from very tall buildings, wobbly bridges and floors on people’s health and wellbeing is to be researched in a new £7.2 million government-funded national research facility at the universities of Exeter and Bath.
By recreating the vibrations using virtual-reality simulators, a multi-disciplinary team of engineers, physiologists, psychologists and medics, including PenCLAHRC’s Dr Vicki Goodwin, will explore how people can experience different symptoms of motion sickness such as tiredness, low mood, difficulty concentrating and lack of motivation if they are working in a building that sways slightly in the wind.
Despite looking rigid in appearance, tall buildings flex in...Read more
Dr Vicki Goodwin, Senior Research Fellow and physiotherapy specialist at PenCLAHRC, met with His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales at the British Geriatrics Society’s 70th anniversary celebration on 6 March.
Vicki represented her specialism in physiotherapy with older people at the event, which was held at St Thomas’ Hospital in London and was attended by over 150 people. His Royal Highness met with patients and members of the Society to celebrate the vital work of doctors, nurses and healthcare workers in caring for older people with complex healthcare needs.
The British Geriatrics Society (BGS) is a multi-disciplinary membership organisation bringing together...Read more
The Health Service Modelling Associates (HSMA) programme is a pilot scheme run by PenCLAHRC’s operational modelling group PenCHORD. It brings university academics and health organisations from across the South West together, building capacity within the NHS to generate and use evidence from modelling and operational research techniques.
Associates were selected from NHS organisations based on their previous knowledge and skills, and the research question they proposed. As well as providing access to a PenCHORD mentor, it gives them the tools and knowledge to put their research rapidly into practice.
Karl Vile was new into the role of Operational Manager and Programme Lead at Devon Partnership NHS Trust (DPT)...Read more
Senior PenCLAHRC staff members have shared their experiences of patient and public involvement in research (PPI), in video interviews with health information website healthtalk.org.
The website is run by a charity and provides free, reliable information about people’s experiences of more than 85 health-related issues including cancer, pregnancy, drugs and motor-neurone disease.
It was set up in 2001 by Oxford GP Dr Ann McPherson CBE and Dr Andrew Herxheimer after Dr McPherson was diagnosed with breast cancer and couldn’t find anyone to talk to about what it was like to experience the illness.
In his interview with the website, Director of PenCLAHRC Professor...Read more