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Research priorities

Physiotherapy research priorities focus research and funding in areas of practice requiring urgent evidence. They sit within the context of wider health research priorities across the UK.

Physiotherapy research priorities 2017-2020

File 197874The CSP is now working with the James Lind Alliance and other stakeholders from across the UK to identify physiotherapy research priorities for the next three years. This will enable the society to promote high-quality, person-centred research in physiotherapy practice.

The priorities identified through the partnership will be used to inform the strategic direction and development of the physiotherapy evidence base. More details on this Priority Setting Partnership and how you can get involved will be available early on in 2017.

Government priorities

Each UK country has a health research strategy which identifies priorities for how research funding is used; for example, to support research training, research projects or the dissemination of research findings. Key topic priorities for healthcare in each country are found in a range of health and social care policy documents.

England
Putting patients first, the NHS England business plan for 2013/14-2015/16, sets out key priorities for the NHS in England. Examples of areas identified as priorities in the plan include patient satisfaction, preventing people from dying prematurely and enhancing quality of life for people with long term conditions.

Northern Ireland
Transforming Your Care, a review of health and social care in Northern Ireland, has recommendations for the shape of its services and identifies ten priority areas of care in its implementation plan. And back in 2011, a Delphi study to identify research priorities for the therapy professions in Northern Ireland was undertaken by the University of Ulster.

Scotland
The Scottish Government's National Delivery Plan for Allied Health Professions in Scotland 2012-2015 identified AHPs as agents of change in health and social care. More information about health policy in Scotland can be found on the government website: www.scotland.gov.uk

Wales
The Welsh government set out its delivery priorities in its NHS Wales Delivery Framework 2013-14. More recent information on health policy in Wales can be found on the government website: wales.gov.uk.

Patient and clinician priorities

Most organisations will ensure that they include the views of patients and clinicians when setting their research priorities. Some projects however are developed to more overtly establish what matters to both patients and clinicians.

James Lind Alliance

The James Lind Alliance has been set up to identify important gaps in knowledge about the effect of treatments. Partnerships of patients and clinicians identify and prioritise as yet unanswered but important questions. This information is then made available to health research funders. See their website for further information on their priority setting partnership and the top 10s of priorities for research: www.lindalliance.org

Treatment uncertainties

The NHS Database of Uncertainties about the Effects of Treatments (DUETS) contained information about treatment uncertainties that lacked reliable research evidence. It helped to shape UK research priorities by taking into account the information needs of patients, carers and clinicians. As of January 2016, the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) stopped supporting DUETS. NICE now recommends its evidence search as an alternative resource for information about treatment uncertainties: http://www.evidence.nhs.uk/

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