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Conference 2018

Conference 2018

Research and Improvement Conference 2018

On the 10th of July Solent held its 8th Research & Improvement Conference, titled “Side by Side: working in partnership with patients, partners and communities to learn and improve”.

For the second year this was a “Patients Included” event, which means that it was planned and delivered in partnership with patients with open access and live streaming. Many of the presentations and workshops were also given jointly with clinical staff and patients/ family members. Solent are extremely proud to be the only NHS Trust to have this international accreditation.

180 people attended the event, which hosted a number of stands, keynote talks, presentations, workshops and posters. The event saw the official launch of the Solent Academy of Research and Improvement, our new Strategy and also the presentation of our Annual Research & Improvement Awards.

Sue Harriman, CEO opened the event alongside Ranj Parmar and Mary Ramsay from our Side-by-Side network. Keynote addresses on the subject of working well in partnership with patients were given by Professor Catherine Pope and Derek Stewart OBE. They give some simple top tips and you can hear their talks here.

Interviews were held through the day with the #Beyondtheroom team, Andre and Mark, ( and can be heard here.

We collected in feedback from the conference day and this is what people enjoyed most…

 “The interactive workshops and celebrating research that is going on in the trust.”

“The Choir! Wonderful”

“Networking, meeting old colleagues, hearing what is new in research and applying to practice.”

“Diverse range of topics and delivery of sessions and the opportunity to share our work.”

“Loved the Choir! The whole day was well organised, even subjects that I didn’t think would be relevant to me were interesting and I learnt from them.”

“Everything- very enjoyable day! Great to see former service users here and especially their participation.”

“Very good to see how much innovation is going on in Solent and improving patient outcomes.”

“Hearing from Side-by-Side and other service users. Not overwhelming amount of information. Good avoidance of jargon. Engaging speakers.”

This year we had some inspiring keynote talks from Professor Catherine Pope and Derek Stewart OBE.

Professor Catherine Pope BA (Hons), PhD, Professor of Medical Sociology, University of Southampton

Catherine Pope is Professor of Medical Sociology in the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton where she leads the Emergency and Urgent Care (EmU) research group. Her research examines health care work and the organisation and delivery of health services and this has entailed recent work on NHS 111 urgent care services, the role of evidence in GP commissioning and studies of ambulance services. She has contributed to major national evaluations of NHS treatment centres, Walk-in Centres and Access to General Practice, and was an invited methodological expert to the Chantler independent review of plain paper packaging of tobacco. Catherine has played a leading role in developing qualitative methods and evidence synthesis in health services research and is co-author of significant books and journal papers on these methods.

Catherine discusses what real partnership working looks like when working with patients and their families.

Derek Stewart OBE

Born in Scotland, Derek Stewart was treated successfully for cancer of the larynx in 1995. A former teacher working with challenging pupils, Derek became involved in numerous aspects of patient involvement at a local,
network and national levels. A blog of his views can be found at Making a Difference.

As former Chair of the National Cancer Research Institute Consumer Liaison Group, Derek assisted with the increase in patient participation in the establishment and work of the National Cancer Research Institute.

Derek still works as a freelance consultant with his own company providing training on patient and public involvement across charity and public sector. This contribution to health services in particular cancer led to being awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list 2006. Derek is Associate Director for patient and public involvement for the National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Networks Coordinating Centre and Director for Patient Involvement at Nottingham Biomedical Research Centre.

Derek shares what he considers to be the key elements of successful partnership working from a patient’s perspective.


You can listen to Beyond the Room podcasts from the day of the conference anytime from this page!

Congratulations to our 2018 Research and Improvement Award Winners!

Learning from Impact from a Project Award

The Learning and Impact Award from a project Award was given to a research, improvement or audit which proved to have great patient benefit.

Runner-up: The Brooker Ward Quality Improvement team

The Brooker Ward Quality Improvement Team was nominated for their quality improvement project to reduce falls in their in-patient older persons organic mental health ward. It was reported that “overall this project led to a reduction in rate of falls to an average of 1.8 per week in comparison to the previous 3.2 per week”.

Winner: Dr Mustafa Soomro

Dr Mustafa Soomro was nominated for conducting “three very high quality audits on the topic of self-harm in mental health.” These audits allowed areas that required improvement and recommendations for future improvement to be identified.


Patient Involvement Award:

The Patient Involvement Award is for a team or an individual who has gone the extra mile to find innovative and meaningful ways to include patients in research or improvement projects.

Runner-up: Child & Adolescent Mental Health Learning & Disability Team

The Child & Adolescent Mental Health Learning & Disability Team had in their nomination that their “collaborative team worked tirelessly to ensure that children and their families have been involved at every stage of [their] accessible information project to develop self-help sleep guides for children with learning disabilities and mental distress.”

Winner: Rosalynn Lankford

Rosalynn Lankford was nominated for her project to co-design care plans with patients and for her innovative ideas to ensure that all patients had the opportunity to participate. In her nomination she was described as excelling in her work “engaging house bound patients in an area of cultural diversity”.


Research and Improvement Hero:

The Research and Improvement Hero Award is for an individual who has made a significant impact in the workplace, on a service and for service users.

Runner-up: Theresa Crowley

Theresa Crowley received 2 different separate nominations from colleagues that work with her. They have said she “has positively embraced and championed the clinical value of service evaluation and audit within her service” and “has put a huge amount of work setting up [a] GP telephone triage service” to manage MSK conditions more effectively.

Winner: Care Home Research Partnership

The Care Home Research Partnership is a collaboration between a number of care homes, the older person’s mental health service and research nurses to increase access to research across our community. This partnership now includes nearly 30 homes across Portsmouth. To date this partnership has resulted in nearly 500 residents and staff being involved in research, and new interventions particularly for those with dementia, such as ways to manage anxiety and aggression and ways to prevent falls. The person who nominated this team described it as “growing from strength to strength.”


Chief Medical Director Award:

Winner: Tom Nardarzynski

Tom Nardazynski has been involved in multiple important service evaluations and research projects, and has done fantastic work supporting the service to develop our digital innovation schemes. He has supported a number of clinicians and our commissioners across sexual health services to develop and evaluate a range of digital approaches to health care, and to share learning nationally and internationally.


Chief Executive Special Recognition Award:

Winner: Side-by-Side Team (Mary Ramsay, Jo Elliot, Ranj Parmar, Andy Clay)

The Side-by-Side Team are a group of people who have worked hard and made an amazing difference by putting patient and public views forward. They have done outstanding work to involve patients and public in improvement of services so for their dedication and support throughout the years. Read more about the Side-by-Side Team on their page.

At this year's conference we were all touched by the performance from the Breathe Easy Choir from Bitterne, the Breathe Easy Choir from Hedge End and the Chessel Chanters.

Breathe Easy Choirs are singing groups open to anyone with a long-term health condition e.g. lung disease, heart disease, diabetes and stroke. The Chessel Chanters are a singing group for people with Parkinson's and their supporters. The underlying vision of both choirs is to improve your health and find your voice.

Listen to their brilliant performance here:

Click the buttons below to download our 2018 Event programme and Speaker biographies.




At this year’s conference we did a snowball exercise, where patients and clinicians alike wrote their hopes and dreams for the Academy of Research and Improvement on a piece of paper and threw them at the stage. We’ve read what you wrote and these are just a few of the things you hope for this year…

  • For more frontline staff to be engaged in research
  • Effective change
  • Share positive experiences
  • Help us hear patients voices
  • To listen and encourage ideas trust wide to improve services
  • Make research seem less scary to people
  • Making patients realise they are the key to the success of our nation’s health by engaging in research, by asking for change and improvement in care processes and pathways, and by being part of something greater than yourself for the good of your fellow men/women.
  • Not just research for improvement but research improvement
  • More information about funding opportunities within Solent
  • Help to get the time to complete projects within normal working hours.
  • Time and resources to pursue clinical questions
  • Help with stats!
  • Allow admin and clerical staff to be exposed to the work of the academy
  • Keeping stretching us to do better PPI (Patient and Public Involvement)
  • Let’s live and breathe research and improvement in everything we do for our patients

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