The National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) has extended the work of NIHR ARC Wessex for 18 months, allowing the ARC to continue to develop its research addressing ongoing health and care challenges in Wessex into 2026.
The award, of more than £3 million, will extend work in our four research areas: Ageing and Dementia, Long Term Conditions, Healthy Communities, and Workforce and Health Systems.
There is also additional funding for applied research in social care and dementia.
Here are some examples of new projects across our themes:
Ageing and Dementia: A new research project looking at how paramedics and emergency services can support patients at home and prevent hospital admission a priority.
Our four post-doctoral researchers (part of the national DEMCOMM programme coordinated by ARC Wessex) will have the opportunity to extend their Fellowships and offer opportunities for health and care staff to be engaged and exposed to applied dementia research through dedicated internships. More than £500,000 in additional funding has been made available for this programme.
We will expand our work on personalised care and self-management for people living with long term conditions, a priority for the NHS in the Wessex region and nationally.
Clinics are being set up to help detect liver disease in more remote and disadvantaged communities in Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight. Researchers working in the Healthy Communities research theme will measure how effective these are.
Our Workforce and Health Systems research team will look at how to use data tools to plan for and manage demand for health and care services. This proactive approach can help balance staffing and patient needs to improve care.
ARC Wessex Director, Professor Alison Richardson said:
“I am really pleased the NIHR has given us the go ahead for an 18-month extension of our work programme. This will enable us to augment and extend our work with partners and the public across Wessex, generating new insights from research to improve population health and patient care.”
In additional to the main research areas we will:
Continue our work to boost research capability in social care, working in collaboration with councils across Wessex.
Champion equality, diversity, and inclusion amongst our research workforce by appointing a senior post-doctoral researcher to work as a member of our career development team.
Accelerate our efforts to diversify public involvement in ARC Wessex research and thread effective patient and public involvement through all levels of the ARC portfolio working with partners across Wessex.