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The SPCR has demonstrated clearly its impact through quality publications, citations in journals and government documents, as well as shaping clinical guidelines and policy statements.”

Early 2018 was the mid-point of the School’s third tranche of funding from the NIHR, totalling just over £30 million. At this point a self-assessment document was completed by the School and reviewed by the NIHR.

The mid-term review is a test of how well the School is achieving the objectives laid out in the 2015 business plan and an opportunity to revisit the School's goals and ambitions to lead primary care research nationally. Assessment criteria for the review encompassed areas such as collaboration and leveraging, impact on policy and practice, patient and public involvement, building research capacity, and challenges and plans for future direction.

The School was commended by the Department of Health and Social Care for performing very well against objectives and for leading the way in primary care research.

Positive comments from Reviewers

“The SPCR has demonstrated clearly its impact through quality publications, citations in journals and government documents, as well as shaping clinical guidelines and policy statements.”

“The SPCR has many areas of impact. They include: atrial fibrillation, hypertension, dementia care, cancer diagnosis, depression, infections and clinical workload.”

“Overall, the SPCR is a shining beacon among the family of NIHR organisations. The SPCR has achieved a significant amount of quality, impactful and relevant work despite modest funding within the overall NIHR funding envelope.”

“I would like to commend the SPCR for their role in the growth of the next generation of primary care academics.”

The following is a synopsis of strategic developments made since renewal in 2015

Our capacity programme has expanded in response to the Health Education England’s recommendation to encourage medical students to consider a career in academic primary care, and we now offer medical  internships. The interns get hands-on research experience and develop skills in primary care focussed research with short placements in established research teams. The School is also reaching beyond our nine partners with the George Lewith Prize, a research competition open to all UK undergraduate medical students.

In addition, we have established working groups across all areas of research who meet regularly to discuss collaboration across partners. Innovations include the initiation of the cross-School collaborations with the NIHR School for Social Care and the NIHR School for Public Health Research– with emerging areas of research across the following themes:

  • Multiple needs
  • Community and individual capability
  • Diversity, equity, access and wellbeing

Our future plans include continuing to develop strategies for highlighting outcomes which demonstrate the reach of impacts beyond the School such as the leveraging of further funding, collaborations and international networks, and the supervision of non-School funded trainees.

Although projects have provided evidence of effective integration of PPIE implementation at each feasible stage of study design, increased efforts to share practise more widely across the NIHR will be prioritised.