Dear <<First Name>>,
I am sorry to begin this month with some awful news, the recent death of our colleague, Prof Nitin Purandare. Nitin joined us from Manchester in August last year and was rapidly building up our Dementia research programme. Just a couple of weeks ago many of you may have attended the very successful networking event he led at Buckfast Abbey. Although he had been with us for only a relatively brief time, I know Nitin will be sorely missed.
This month we are highlighting research carried out in partnership with the local community which could have a real impact on peoples’ lives; where diabetic retinopathy screening intervals could be safely reduced, improving patient experience and service efficiency, plus our partners at the European Centre for the Environment and Human Health working with employers to create healthier workplaces.
I hope you continue to find this newsletter informative.
Director of PenCLAHRC
PenCLAHRC publish bite-sized research
CLAHRC BITEs (Brokering Innovation Through Evidence) are small A5 double-sided fliers, also available to download as PDFs, that provide summaries highlighting the most important findings and implications of some of PenCLAHRC’s work. The concept was originally developed by CLAHRC for Nottingham, Derbyshire and Leicestershire, with the aim of providing NHS staff with ‘need to know’ information about published research and health-care projects. The projects covered so far are:
1 – The use of Tranexamic Acid (TXA) by the NHS ambulance service and hospital trusts
2 – The use of operational research to benefit stroke victims
3 – The indications of differences between arms in blood pressure readings
4 – Savings that could be made in diabetic retinopathy screening
For more information please click here.
Research could save money in diabetic retinopathy screening
Diabetic retinopathy is a common complication of diabetes. It occurs when high blood sugar levels damage the cells in the retina and, if not treated, can lead to blindness. In all but some cases diabetic retinopathy has a typically slow rate of progression and can take years to develop. PenCLAHRC research has concluded that it would therefore be a safe and cost-effective strategy to screen people with type 2 diabetes (who have not yet developed diabetic retinopathy) for the disease once every two years, instead of annually. The study predicts that savings of around 25 per cent could be made. Click here to read more.
PenCLAHRC’s ‘Project of the Month’: Diabetic Footcare
People with diabetes are much more likely than others to have amputations of their feet and legs. Recent studies suggest this may be particularly so in the South West, where we have some of the highest amputation rates in the UK. Excellent self-care is considered the cornerstone of prevention, but this needs to be taught, and more than that, it must become a firm daily routine in the patient's life.
A PenCLAHRC team, led by Mark Daly, are trying to find ways to help educate patients in the best ways to look after their feet and to understand its importance, making it part of their everyday routine. The team will soon be applying for funding to carry out a 5-centre study across the Peninsula, comparing special individual education and support sessions with a trained foot care specialist (podiatrist) and group education with existing or usual care. Initially, studies will focus on achieving improved self-care, but the ultimate purpose is to demonstrate how to reduce ulceration and amputations. Click here for more information.
HTAi for Evidence Synthesis Team
Jo Thompson-Coon and Becky Whear will be presenting at the 9th Annual Meeting of the Health Technology Assessment international (HTAi), which will be held in Spain 23rd-27th June. Their presentations will include looking atthe effectiveness and acceptability of Patient Initiated Clinics (PICs), and interventions to reduce paediatric admissions. The team will also be present at the Health Services Research Network (HSRN) Symposium on 19th-20th June, which is being held in Manchester. For more information, please click here.
ECCreating Healthy Workplaces in Cornwall
A research team from the European Centre for the Environment and Human Health (ECEHH), who are supported by PenCLAHRC, are collaborating with Cornwall-based businesses that have achieved the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Healthy Workplace Gold Award, in their efforts to create healthier workplaces. The collaboration is supporting the development of a ward-based health and wellbeing workplace intervention at the Royal Cornwall Hospital, Truro. Businesses involved include Rodda’s, the dairy and ice cream manufacturer; GE Money, a private financial call centre; and Coastline Housing, a not-for-profit housing association. Click here to read more.
European Stroke Conference for PenCLAHRC
Last month, Martin James, Martin Pitt and Thomas Monks presented their latest research on the best ways to maximise the benefits of thrombolysis (clot-busting treatment) for acute stroke at the European Stroke Conference, held in Portugal. Their work is part of the PenCLAHRC Stroke rtPA project, which is working with all acute hospitals in the South West Peninsula and in collaboration with the Peninsula Heart & Stroke Network, and the South West Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust. The project uses computer simulations to model the patient’s emergency pathway, and is aimed at identifying and eradicating delays to the rapid delivery of thrombolysis for people with stroke. For more information please click here.