How we can help

How we can help

Face-to-face advice is available for local researchers supported by telephone and email contact.   Our team of advisers can offer advice on all aspects of preparing health and social care research grant applications. We can advise on:

  • focusing research ideas and refining the research question
  • choosing an appropriate research design (e.g. feasibility or full randomised controlled trial)
  • selecting the right methodology for the study (e.g. statistical issues, health economics and qualitative research)
  • identifying the most appropriate funding stream
  • building a research team (including help with identifying potential collaborators)
  • involving patients and public in all stages of the research process
  • developing a plain English summary.

The RDS can provide post-funding advice to researchers experiencing difficulties and who received and acknowledged RDS support in their successful funding applications. This support may relate to study set-up, delivery or analysis, but will be advisory only, including signposting to other groups. The RDS cannot provide support to fill gaps in the expertise of research teams.

Why do I need help?

Most funding streams have particular emphasis and requirements and it is helpful to find out about these from experienced researchers. For example:

  • the Research for Patient Benefit Programme (RfPB) has a strong emphasis on involving the public in the design and execution of research
  • Health Technology Assessment (HTA) research is undertaken where some evidence already exists to show that a technology can be effective and this technology needs to be compared with the current NHS intervention to see which works best
  • Invention for Innovation (i4i) funding supports the pre-clinical and clinical development of innovative medical technologies.  As collaboration is key, project teams must comprise at least two organisations from higher education institutions, NHS organisations and industry.

 When should I seek help?

The sooner the better!  This will enable the RDS to identify areas where it can most effectively provide support.