On the 9th November 2017, two members of the BRC’s Patients and Public Involvement Advisory Group (PPIAG) worked with Danielle Bear, HEE/NIHR Clinical Doctoral Fellow to deliver a grant writing workshop to three Clinical Training Fellows.

These workshops have been running for two years and they give Clinical Training Fellows an opportunity to talk about their projects and to gain advice on how to complete a successful grant application. However, this is the first time that the PPIAG have been involved.

This new addition meant that as well as being able to hear about Danielle’s personal experience of applying (successfully!) for her own grants, they could speak to patients with experience of being involved in research. They were able to advise the fellows on how and when they could incorporate patient and public involvement into their work and how they could make the most of this on their applications. The PPIAG members also invited the Fellows to send them their lay summaries and any patient information for them to review.

This workshop is part of a new package which the PPIAG are providing to this year’s Fellows. The second step will be an application review in January where the fellows can discuss their progress with members of the group and gain feedback on ways to improve their application. The final stage will be in June and the PPIAG will carry out mock interviews with the Fellows to prepare them for the sorts of questions a lay person may ask about their work.

Dr Christoher Allen, one of our Clinical Training Fellow said “Thanks very much indeed for organising such an informative session. I found it tremendously useful and am most grateful to the speakers for giving up their time”

Brenda Thompson-Murray, PPIAG member said “On three occasions I have worked with Clinical Training Fellows, this is so that candidates can present their summaries/research and receive feedback from a patient perspective. This has not only been a positive process for clinicians and patients to interact in an environment that can bring about positive change for research and proposals for research, I also found this experience to be informative and empowering. It has allowed me to gain insight into the policy and process that underpins clinical research but mostly it demonstrates that clinicians are keen to include patients at the beginning of the process to help improve healthcare.”

Danielle Bear said “Writing a grant application can be really daunting so I’m really happy to be able to share my experience with others. In my opinion, the more people you speak to about it, the better your application is. This workshop is a great way to share thoughts, ideas and experiences to help the Fellows submit the best grant that they can.”

For more information on patient and public involvement please get in touch:

Jacinth McGahon, Patient and Public Involvement Project Manager jacintha.mchahon@gstt.nhs.uk 0207 188 7188 extension 53524. Further information on the PPIAG can be found here