Involving patients in research is about far more than just simply asking them to participate in trials for new treatments or interventions.
Asthma UK involves people affected by asthma at all stages of our research programme; from telling us what the priorities for research should be to help shape our research strategy, to selecting which research applications to us should be funded, to guiding researchers in external projects.
It's important to ensure that all of the research funded in asthma is going to have the biggest possible impact and benefit for people with asthma. Involving people with asthma, and parents of children with asthma, in making the decisions about how money is spent and in supporting researchers with their perspectives is an incredibly important part of that. Studies have shown that involving people in this way increases the likelihood of the success of some research projects, too, making them better value for money.
Working to involve people affected by asthma allows us to be a part of projects that are funded by others, too this means that the expertise that people with asthma have from living with the condition can be used to influence much more research than we are able to fund ourselves.
We have a range of different activities that people affected by asthma can be involved in and we welcome your input and perspectives for our research programme, and projects that we're partners on.
We do also publicise trials that are seeking participants but that's just the tip of the iceberg of how you can shape asthma research for the benefit of the 1 in 11 people in the UK with asthma, and globally.
How to get involved - become a Research and Policy volunteer
All of the people that help us to shape, fund and guide research have joined us as Research and Policy volunteers. As part of this role, among other things, we ask them to:
- shape our research strategy by deciding which questions are most important to people with asthma, and what research will have the biggest impact on their quality of life
- review applications for funding that we receive from researchers
- work with politicians, healthcare professionals and NHS decision-makers to improve the quality of asthma care
- work with researchers to design research projects
- share your perspective as someone living with asthma
We ask people to contribute as much or as little time as they're able to. If the above sounds like something that you'd like to participate in, you can find more information in the following downloads: information about being a Research and Policy volunteer; and an application form to become a Research and Policy volunteer.
Participating in clinical trials and other studies
Clinical trials can be used to test whether a new treatment or intervention works and to gather the evidence needed to get new treatments out to patients. Anyone can participate in trials of treatments or interventions, you don't need to be a Research and Policy volunteer. The trials listed below are run by other organisations, and each will have their own criteria for people that they will ask to participate for example, they might be recruiting only people with severe asthma. For more information about each, follow the links below and the contact details on the trial websites.
Join the RASP-UK Patient Input Platform
The UK Refractory Asthma Stratification Programme (RASP-UK) is an exciting collaboration between academic researchers, pharmaceutical and industry partners and patients to develop new treatments for severe asthma.
Researchers wanting to involve people with asthma in their research
If you're a researcher and would like to find out how you can involve people affected by asthma in your research, you can find guidance in our pages for researchers.
You can involve people affected by asthma in the development of projects, providing guidance during projects and as participants. Find out how you could involve people, as there may be opportunities for people affected by asthma to shape your research that you hadn't considered.