Tag Archives: general practice research

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Domhnall MacAuley is a CMAJ Associate Editor and a professor of primary care in Northern Ireland, UK

 

How do you create a successful school of primary care research?  Measuring outputs through academic papers, presentations at international meetings, and the general impact of research, the UK primary care community has had remarkable success. The ten year celebration meeting of the School of Primary Care Research (SPCR) in England was an opportunity to reflect on their achievements and try to pick out the key factors in that success.

It wasn’t always this way. As an academic and an editor I know the struggle that researchers had in the early days. There were few grants, ...continue reading

Domhnall_MacDomhnall MacAuley is a CMAJ Associate Editor and a professor of primary care in Northern Ireland, UK. He recently attended the 2016 Primary Health Care Research Conference (PHCRIS) in Canberra, Australia
 

Grant Russell, newly elected for a second term as President of the Australasia Association of Academic Primary Care (AAAPC) was upbeat in his introduction to the second day of the meeting. He reminded us how the Canadian academic, Martin Bass, had warned against learned helplessness and he pointed out that primary care has much more influence than we give ourselves credit for.

Claire Jackson, one of Australia’s leading primary care researchers was introduced at her plenary lecture as “an eternal optimist”. True to form, she told us that there has never been a more exciting time to be in primary care research. She listed the national primary health care strategy, the primary care framework, and the 31 primary health networks. While there have been numerous health care reforms, each one has primary care at its centre and there is growing government awareness of the need to address complex chronic illness in community. ...continue reading

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Domhnall_MacDomhnall MacAuley is a CMAJ Associate Editor and a professor of primary care in Northern Ireland, UK. He is currently attending the 2016 Primary Health Care Research Conference in Canberra, Australia

 

“This is the time to be in general practice...This is the time to be in general practice research,”
said Steve Hambleton,  former chair of the Primary Health Care Advisory Group, a body created to look at options to reform care for people with complex and chronic illness. Steve gave the opening conference address. He spoke about the advisory group's work, their wide ranging membership including family doctors, other providers and consumers, and he outlined three areas that would be major challenges in the future: chronic care, obesity, and preventable disease. Steve also reminded us that those patients with the greatest number of diseases see the greatest number of doctors. The final report, delivered on ...continue reading

BROWN Lynsey

Lynsey Brown

Dr Lynsey Brown and Dr Christina Hagger are conference conveners for this year's Primary Health Care Research conference in Australia

 

HAGGER Christina_cropped

Christina Hagger

High quality primary health care (PHC) research is a powerful community resource. Strengthened and contextualised with insights and expertise from policy makers, practitioners and consumers, it informs improvements in the frontline of the health system.

Question: How to increase that power? How can we better routinely inform, access and utilise quality research?

One Answer: Bring research users and researchers face-to-face for deliberative dialogue, debate and discussion. After all, we know that we can only really make a difference when people work with people to share real-world,  as well as research,  knowledge and skills.

While such linkage and exchange logic is sound, the practice can be more elusive. ...continue reading

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DMacA_3Domhnall MacAuley is a CMAJ Associate Editor and a professor of primary care in Northern Ireland, UK

 

My programmed response is always to jump to the defence of primary care, but a report entitled “Chronic Failure in Primary Care” that was recently published by the Grattan Institute, a public policy think tank in Melbourne, Australia, raises interesting challenges.

It was written by Jo Wright, Hal Swerissen, a health policy expert from LaTrobe University in Australia, and Stephen Duckett, an economist who will be known to many Canadians from his time in Alberta. It is critical and challenging but behind the headlines there are some constructive ideas. ...continue reading

JR_2016Joanne Reeve is an Associate Clinical Professor in Primary Care at Warwick Medical School in the UK, and the Chair of the Society for Academic Primary Care


A recent editors' blog by Domhnall MacAuley suggested that it is “difficult to see a future for academic general practice.” I propose that the solution lies in the broader discipline of Academic Primary Care (APC).

Academic Primary Care matters. APC is a distinct discipline driving improvement in primary care through education and research. Academic general practice lies at the heart of this wider multidisciplinary community committed to improving whole-person centred primary health care. The APC community lead health service research driving improvements in policy and practice in key priority areas such as antibiotic stewardship and cardiovascular risk management. But APC also tackles the distinct challenges facing the Primary Care community: for example, the need for new person-centred models of acute and chronic care to address problems of treatment burden and ‘too much medicine’. APC supports the redesign of Primary Care through re-engaging with the core principles of continuous, comprehensive, accessible, whole person-centred care. ...continue reading

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DenisSir Denis Pereira Gray, OBE, is a consultant at St Leonard’s Research Practice, Exeter, and Emeritus Professor at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom

 

A few weeks ago a blog by Domhnall MacAuley picked up on an article that I had written in the British Journal of General Practice, entitled “Academic general practice: a viewpoint on achievements and challenges.” The article was written to ask some big questions and to stimulate debate about academic general practice and Domhnall's blog followed it up interestingly and extended the issues.

I am still optimistic about academic general practice. General practice is the key branch of the medical profession and there are still many aspects of it to be discovered. Yes of course “big data” are a new resource and need new techniques, but a place remains for clinical research in general practice and in single research active general practices too. However, the relationships and the support for research in clinical settings need clarification and funding. The prime role of single practice research is to study new clinical developments, to scope their potential, and pave the way for bigger definitive studies.   Single practices do have the numbers for statistical significance if they choose their subject ...continue reading

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DMacA_3Domhnall MacAuley is a CMAJ Associate Editor and a professor of primary care in Northern Ireland, UK

 

Reading a recent robust critique of the achievements and challenges to academic general practice in the UK, and a plea by senior academics for increased capacity in clinical academic general practice, I began to wonder.... How might we design general practice research for the future, what direction should a department of general practice take, and where does general practice fit into the future of clinical research? As an intellectual exercise, I allowed myself to think the unthinkable. And, for a general practice academic, brought up in family medicine and immersed in the traditions of personal primary and continuing care, this felt like heresy. At the very least, however, perhaps we should begin to think creatively about the future. What do you think?

It is difficult to see a future for academic general practice. ...continue reading