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WEDNESDAY 12.05 - 12.50


This will be an interactive workshop, with plenty of Q&A and discussion. Important preliminaries such as the choice of journal, pre-submission enquiries and questions about Open Access will be followed by a description of the characteristics of good (and bad) papers and ways to maximise your chances of acceptance. Using the British Journal of General Practice as an example, you will find out about how academic editing works and the kinds of issues that affect editors in their application of the peer review process and their decisions on acceptance or rejection of papers.

Roger Jones, BJGP Editor

Seeing things differently: growing and shaping your research ideas with public involvement

Julie Clayton and Victoria Wilson


The following workshops are part of the South West regional meeting of the Society for Academic Primary Care (SAPC) programme. Workshop places are limited, so please book early using the links below to avoid disappointment.

All workshops will take place on Thursday 5th March 2020 from 9.15 to 10.45
at The Bristol Hotel, Prince Street, Bristol, BS1 4QF

Please note: Information about additional workshops will be made available shortly.

Please book early to secure a place.

Thursday 9.00 - 10.30

Telling Stories About Breathlessness: using arts health approaches to help your GP listen!

Breathlessness is a clinical problem as important as pain. Breathlessness is a sensation affecting those living with chronic respiratory disease, obesity, heart disease and anxiety disorders. Patients describe the sensation of breathlessness as evoking the fear and dread of nearly drowning or having a plastic bag held over your face. A repetitive experience, (often invisible to others, who can’t help you anyway) of staring death in the face. Breathlessness disrupts the narratives of normal life. It slows you down. Isolates you. It shrinks your world. Yet most patients find breathlessness hard to describe and GPs often avoid asking about a symptom they can do nothing about. 

Over the last two years Penny and Malpass have collected over 80 letters written to the breath. The letters have helped patients explore their relationship to their breath and express their experience of breathlessness to themselves more easily. In this workshop, informed by ideas of narrative medicine, we now move forward to explore how this work can support patients to start talking to their GPs about breathlessness and support GP’s to keep asking about a symptom for which medicine can do little about.

This workshop is exploratory and intended to provoke lively discussion and potentially help inform the development of a future research bid. We will suggest how the use of arts health approaches could potentially support patient-GP conversations about breathlessness and will ask participants to consider the value of including ‘letters to the breath’ in patient electronic records.


To deliver an inter-disciplinary workshop that informs practice, ignites the clinical imagination and supports the development of a future grant.


  1. Explore with the audience how GPs can engage with the findings from an arts health project. exploring patient accounts/stories of living with breathlessness.
  2. Explore the barriers to communicating about breathlessness in primary care.
  3. Using role-play techniques, explore workshop participants views on embedding arts health project outcomes within the GP consultation.

Expected outcomes:

Clinical participants will leave the workshop more aware of the therapeutic value in asking their patients about breathlessness.  All participants will see an exemplar of arts health methods and how this approach can be used for public engagement activity as well as a research method. All participants will understand the symptom of breathlessness from a narrative medicine perspective and have had fun (we hope) along the way. 

Alice Malpass, Elspeth Penny, Gene Feder - Centre for Academic Primary Care, University of Bristol

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Exploring the challenges associated with promoting and encouraging real world use of a new digital health intervention

As academics we often develop novel interventions with the intention that they will be used within the health and social care system, either locally or more widely.  In order for these interventions to have an effect, the target users must engage with them.  Gaining this engagement with digital interventions is more complex than simply writing a prescription or referring a patient for a particular treatment.  This workshop will give members of the academic primary care community the opportunity to explore the multi-faceted approach required to ensure maximum uptake and develop the tools needed to ensure their own interventions engage as many users as possible.

For the workshop the Care Companion which will be used as a case study. The Care Companion is a free online resource which provides information, advice and guidance to help people with caring responsibilities care more effectively.  It is designed to support the carer’s well-being as well as that of the person they care for.  The Care Companion has been co-created over a period of five years by a panel of carers, with teams from the NHS, local authorities, charities and academics.  It has been available for use by carers across our local region for just over a year


To develop an understanding of the practical considerations and challenges associated with engaging users with a newly developed digital health intervention.


  1. To identify the target population for a new intervention
  2. To identify ways to engage with the target population and how to maximise them
  3. To develop an awareness of potential barriers to engagement and how to address them

Expected outcomes:

Workshop participants will leave with an understanding of real life challenges of engaging users with a new digital intervention.  They will also be equipped with a range of strategies to address these issues and maximise uptake. 

Emma Scott, Ronni Nanton, Celia Bernstein - Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick.

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How to Win at Twitter

Twitter is an increasingly important platform for building your reputation, finding collaborators and discovering what other people are doing. It has become the social media platform of choice for the academic community, and this is no less true for primary care academics.


This workshop is aimed at people who have a Twitter account but who feel they aren’t making the most of it. While it does cover the basics, like what a hashtag is, it’s designed to help people take more confident steps in developing their Twitter presence and get the most value out of their use of the platform.


This course will teach you:

  1. The basics of managing and enhancing your Twitter account
  2. How to find people tweeting on things that interest you
  3. How to build your follower base
  4. How to reach more ‘influencers’ in your field when you tweet
  5. How to improve the reach of and engagement with your tweets

Expected outcomes:

Workshop participants will have more confidence using twitter to build their reputation, find collaborators and discovering what other people are doing.

Participants need to have a Twitter account to participate, and to bring along a phone, tablet or laptop to do the hands-on exercises.

Zoe Trinder-Widdess – NIHR Applied Research Collaboration West (NIHR ARC West)

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Should education be fun? Exploring the use of educational games to stimulate learning in medical education

Children experience much of their early learning through play and social interaction. As they grow up learning becomes more structured and adult learning is traditionally more formal. The use of games for adult education can be seen as childish and, by this association, be unsuitable for adult learners. Is there any evidence that we should still use games as part of adult education and specifically in medical education?

Over the last six years Gloucestershire Academy (as part of University of Bristol) have developed a growing number of games to help undergraduate medical students learn, ranging from simple card and board games to more complex technological games. We have also been collecting our own data and collating the literature on the effectiveness of educational games.


This workshop will present an overview of this work and the evidence supporting the use of games in medical education. There will be an opportunity to play the games we have developed. From our experience, we will give ideas on how to structure games and avoid pitfalls in design to maximise learning. There will also be an opportunity to discuss your own potential education games that you may wish to develop.  


  1. To establish an understanding of what an educational game is.
  2. To exhibit the various formats that education games can take.
  3. To explore the evidence for educational games as a teaching tool.
  4. To demonstrate our approach for developing educational games.
  5. To generate as a group, ideas for educational games that participants could use in their own workplaces.

Expected outcomes:

Workshop participants will feel knowledgeable not only in the evidence for educational games but also how to construct a game of their own.

Adam McDermott (Academic Clinical Fellow in Primary Care) and Gloucestershire Academy (University of Bristol)

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