You must get our opinion because it’s very easy to assume”:  Older care-home residents and the impact of research activity

A blog from the RReACH Seminar, 10 February 2016

In February, the CLAHRC-funded study, Residents Research-Active in Care Homes (RReACH), presented its experiences of collaborating with older care-home residents in research at the School of Health Sciences Seminar Series at the University of East Anglia.  These lively seminars connect public, staff, students and clinicians with current research debates on research and evidence.  

You can view a video of the seminar by clicking here

“Nothing about us without us” is a widely-agreed concept supporting patient and public (PPI) involvement in research, to make people’s voices count, helping improve research and widen its positive impact.  The relationships built up during this process enable learning and influence on all sides.  However, we argue that the capacity of some groups such as older care-home residents to engage in research might not be recognised.  Older care-home residents are typically overlooked as active collaborators within research.

Our seminar discusses our experiences of collaborating with older care-home residents and older people from the community in our RReACH study to explore ways in which older care-home residents can engage successfully in research.  These needed to take into account the distinct living circumstances and perspectives of residents in care homes.  We were also able to highlight to academic and service-provider communities how research activity impacted on our collaborators and helped demonstrate how widespread assumptions about care-home residents’ views and abilities can be challenged.  Our seminar draws on findings from the RReACH systematic review, interviews with care-home residents and staff, and a stakeholder workshop.  It also identifies lessons which could be transferred both to other homes and to other sectors and groups involved in residential care.

Dr Kathleen Lane presented the seminar on behalf of the RReACH Team. You can view more information about the RReACH study here

Related blogs: A step forward: reflections on a workshop on PPI with older care home residents, by Anne Killet


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