Understanding Healthy Weight Management - Primary Care Research Assistant

Tenure

From June 2021 to March 2022.

Time commitment and remuneration

5 session per month, at £227 per session for 10 months (1 session = 4 hours).

Expenses

Travel and accommodation covered by the project.

Project background

Supported by DHSC, our aim is to develop a better understanding of the current environment, challenges, and barriers for the referral to and uptake of healthy weight management services from a primary care and GP perspective, with a focus on Tier 2 digital and local authority behavioural services, as well as the success of healthy weight coaches.

Based on insights and findings from our work, we will aim to set out possible interventions to incentivise GPs and practices to increase referrals into healthy weight management services.

Throughout this programme, we will link in with existing RCGP work and groups, as well as relevant activities from other national bodies such as PHE and NHSE/I. We will also ensure to gather a diversity of viewpoints from across the nation.

The role

We are seeking a clinician interested/with a background in research to support and work with us on this applied research project (research assistant-level).

Primary responsibilities:

  • Participate in planning and facilitating two roundtable events
  • Lead on the development of 4 case studies
  • Lead on the design of semi-structured interviews
  • Support/conduct 8 semi-structured interviews
  • Support development and analysis of a survey for GPs and the wider practice team to help identify needs, preference, and barriers
  • Attend regular keep in touch meetings with project team
  • Support final report to DHSC and bringing together findings

About the candidate

The ideal candidate will:

  • Be a research assistant or early career researcher looking to develop their skills in applied primary care research
  • Be a practising GP with up-to-date knowledge on current best practice in mixed methods research
  • Have a general knowledge of healthy weight management services
  • Bring their networks to the programme
  • Have the relevant clinical and technical expertise required to deliver this body of work and act as a voice for the project, identifying and acting upon opportunities as they arise to promote the project

More details on our aims (for information):

  • Support DHSC to understand the effectiveness of programmes / services being delivered
  • Better understand what support is needed for GPs and the wider primary care team to increase referrals into and engagement with weight management services
  • Ensuring projects and services are aligned with health professional’s needs and wants
  • Understand how ARRS and other workforce initiatives can be effectively used to support the implementation and success of healthy weight management services (health and wellbeing coach, social prescribers, care coordinators, etc.), including how best to integrate these roles and understanding perceptions of these roles.
  • Understand how digital healthy weight management services can be utilised alongside direct primary care team interventions, how digital uptake can be increased, and how we can ensure that health inequalities are not being widened as a result
  • Outline interventions and incentives based on this understanding that would lead to increased referrals and patient engagement (e.g., through care plans and peer support)
  • Align and link in with DHSC’s wider evaluation work, supporting the evaluation to better understanding the impact of referrals coming from GP practice teams

How to apply

The RCGP aims to encourage and maintain the highest possible standards of patient care in general practice. We are looking to recruit a member of the RCGP who can work collaboratively to raise the profile and awareness of this work within both general practice and the wider primary care community with the aim of improving the quality of care and patient outcomes.

We would like to know more about your experience as a researcher and your thoughts on existing healthy weight management services.

Send your CV (no longer than 2 sides of A4) and a supporting statement (question above - max 300 words) to innovation@rcgp.org.uk to be received no later than 5pm on Thursday 17 June. Interviews will take place remotely on Wednesday 23 June.

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