Improving PPIE in RfPB research applications
Created on Friday, 17 Jan 2020.
Doing public involvement in the right way
- Don’t over-complicate it - use people to get a second opinion, help you, critique your application
- Ensure PPI activities are not treated merely as a tick box exercise, but have a clear purpose/role in improving the research study
- Use a range of engagement techniques - focus groups, individual conversations, surveys etc
- Respect the expertise patients bring - value their time (inc. payment) and give equal voice
Improve plain English summary (PES)
- Read the INVOLVE and NIHR guidelines about how to write a plain PES
- Make sure PES explains the research, not just the reason for it
- PES tend to suffer from the same problems of language, layout, etc
- Use lay people to write PES. Often if PPI comes from academic profession, the PES remains over complicated despite their help
Description of public involvement in grant applications
- Weave PPI description throughout the application, if you just put it at the end then reviewers have to piece it all together - make their job easier!
- Make sure your application ‘fully’ costs PPI involvement
- Ensure early stage researchers have adequate mentoring and strong co-applicants
- Use INVOLVE guidelines on how to work out accurate and fair payment for public members involved in the research
Value of PPI to research design
- Make sure the difference PPI has made to the application is explained
- Good PPIE makes the research better - it’s not just about giving ‘lip-service’ to a requirement.
- Get lay person with good communication skills to check Plain English Summary even before initial submission.
- Don’t use the words ‘we will invite people’ - involve them from the start.
- Good PPIE doesn’t happen overnight. Demonstrate that you've built those relationships?
Clarity of public co-applicants
- Ensure application has clear role described if PPI co-applicant present
- Mandatory use of PPI payment guide from INVOLVE. Only give choice of vouchers if it will affect public members on benefits.
Having the right people involved
- Ensure PPIE is reflective of the communities you are working with
- Make sure the application is studying a diverse enough group to be applicable more widely
- Think about how to balance, including people, the research is intended for with the tasks/skills you need for PPIE
- One person’s view is not enough - you need to talk to lots of patients
- Involve relevant members of the community to help identifying the specific terms of the project proposed
- Beware patient group endorsement - they will always support research into their topic
- Ensure researchers think about participants belonging to patient groups
- PPI can help you identify compounding factors that might influence your intervention, e.g. in a randomised study how many people might access intervention (especially when exercise / online support) independently.
- Ensure participants are involved in dissemination - get them tickets to conferences, etc.