Patient and public involvement and engagement

Patient and public involvement engagement is where members of the public are actively involved in research projects and research organisations. These activities recognise that people with lived experiences contribute additional expertise and give valuable, novel insights. 

Our dedicated team provides free support and advice for staff looking to involve patients and the public in their research.

In addition, they provide access to:

  • UHS’s Patient and public involvement (PPI) groups, including Adult, Perioperative Medicine, Young Adult (16-24 years) and Children and Young Person’s Group (8-16 years)
  • Database of adults interested in contributing to PPI activities (over 150 members)
  • Under-represented audiences through our outreach activities 


Please contact publicinvolvement@uhs.nhs.uk to get in touch with the PPI team, led by Dr Caroline Barker, and discuss your requirements. 


Why involve patients and the public?

PPI in research is expected for many funding streams (including the NIHR) and is a consideration made by the National Research Ethics Service when assessing applications. If PPI is not incorporated into your work, you will have to give a clear explanation of why not.

It could benefit your research through:

  • Additional expertise – this could come from having experience of the illness or simply relate to their age or demographic
  • Ensuring the research questions are relevant and the priorities reflect the needs of those affected
  • Improving patient experience and influencing trial recruitment and retention
  • Assessing ethics/acceptability – helping ensure your research is conducted in a way that is sensitive to the needs and preferences of your participants
  • Assisting with writing in lay language