What is Research and Development (R&D)?
Research is an activity designed to produce new, generalisable information and/or test a hypothesis. Development is concerned with getting new ideas into use.
All research carried out in the NHS Forth Valley and involving NHS staff, patients, patient identifiable information, tissues or data must be registered with the R&D Office and be given NHS Forth Valley management approval. Any unregistered research is not covered by our insurance. It will also need a favourable opinion from an appropriate Research Ethics Committee. Contact the R&D Office for more information.
How do I know whether my project is research or evaluation?
There can be confusion as to when it will be research, clinical audit or service evaluation and often there can be overlap between these categories. The following table will outline the criteria for the different categories:
|Research||Clinical Audit||Service Evaluation|
|The attempt to derive generalisable new knowledge including studies that aim to generate hypotheses as well as studies that aim to test them.||Designed and conducted to produce information delivery of best care.||Designed and conducted solely to define or judge current care.|
|Quantitative research – designed to test a hypothesis.Qualitative research – identifies/explores themes following established methodology.||Designed to answer the question “does this service reach a predetermined standard?”||Designed to answer the question “what standard does this service achieve?”|
|Addresses clearly defined questions, aims and objectives.||Measures against a standard.||Measures current service without reference to a standard.|
|Quantitative research – may involve evaluating or comparing interventions, particularly new ones.Qualitative research – usually involves studying how interventions and relationships are experienced.||Involves an intervention in use ONLY. (The choice of treatment is that of the clinician and patient according to guidance, professional standards and/or patient preference.)||Involves an intervention in use ONLY. (The choice of treatment is that of the clinician and patient according to guidance, professional standards and/or patient preference.)|
|Usually involves collecting data that are additional to those for routine care but may include data collected routinely. May involve treatments, samples or investigations additional to routine care.||Usually involves analysis of existing data but may include administration of simple interview or questionnaire.||Usually involves analysis of existing data but may include administration of simple interview or questionnaire.|
|Quantitative research – study designed may involve allocating patients to intervention groups.||No allocation to intervention groups; the health care professional and patient have chosen intervention.||No allocation to intervention groups; the health care professional and patient have chosen intervention.|
|Qualitative research uses a clearly defined sampling framework underpinned by conceptual or theoretical justifications.||Before clinical audit.||Before service evaluation.|
|May involved randomisation.||No randomisation.||No randomisation.|
What does the R&D Office do?
Review, approve and monitor research proposals
Support and advise clinicians and all research staff
Develop processes and procedures
Provide information, advice and training
Link with other organisations
Can the public become involved in research?
The quick answer to this is “YES”. More information on how members of the public can become involved in research in Forth Valley can be found in public interest.
Get in touch
Details on how to contact the R&D Office for NHS Forth Valley are available on our contact details page