Are you keen to get into research but lacking in confidence? If so, help is at hand and there are lots of opportunities, says Ann Moore.
Research in many areas of physiotherapy practice is growing but it is a slow process. Much more research to support our work is necessary, as it is in all areas of health practice.
There is also a need to ensure that published, relevant, rigorous research is integrated into current practice.
The very word research sometimes makes colleagues shy away from getting involved as it is often thought that randomised controlled trials are the only way forward. This isn’t the case – there are many approaches to research at different levels that can inform patient care and further research. These include rigorous data collection, consistent outcome measurement, laboratory and experimental work, qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research.
The NHS has indicated firmly that research should be part of everyday practice, which is the case. So how can you get involved? The CAHPR was created in 2014 from a merger of the Allied Health Professions Research Network (AHPRN) – previously the National Physiotherapy Research Network, or NPRN – and the AHP Research Forum. The NPRN, AHPRN and CAHPR have been fully supported over the years, financially and administratively, by the CSP. Since 2014, CAHPR has been jointly funded by all the AHP bodies in the UK.
CAHPR’s mission is to develop AHP research, strengthen evidence of the professions’ value and impact in enhancing service user and community care, and enable all the professions to speak with one voice on research matters, thereby raising our profile and increasing our influence.
CAHPR comprises a strategy and governance committee, a professoriate group and a regional hub network. We currently have 20 active hubs around the UK, which are all run by experienced researchers and facilitators. We have 150 hub leaders and facilitators across the UK and 115 professors in our professoriate group. The hubs exist to help all AHPS in their locality to become involved in research at all levels and implement evidence-based practice.
CAHPR also has strong links with a number of national bodies, such as the Council of Deans, NIHR Clinical Research Networks, Public Health England and the Association of UK University Hospitals clinical academic careers working group.
So, CAHPR hubs are there to help you and your colleagues to engage more in research activities. You will find contact details for your local hub and more information about CAHPR telephone 0207 306 6666.
- Professor Ann Moore is director of the Council for AHP Research
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