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We evaluate how patient care may be improved, either by more effective treatments, or by more efficient models for delivery of care. This is the major focus of our research programme in mental health, but also extends to other areas.


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Optimising the management of allergic reactions

We are undertaking a randomised trial to improve the management of allergic reactions by parents in the community. This includes using a novel intervention intended to enhance the retention of anaphylaxis management skills.

Retinal imaging in diabetic eye screening

We are collaborating externally, with Kingston University and the Institute of Ophthalmology, to study whether retinal images can be processed automatically to improve the cost-effectiveness of the National Diabetic Eye Screening Programme.

Sexually transmitted infections
Working with the Institute of Infection and Immunity, and clinical colleagues at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, we are evaluating the use of new technologies for screening for sexually transmitted infections. 
Treatments for respiratory disease
The Cochrane Airways Group, which is co-ordinated from our institute, works with a global network of authors and editors to systematically review the effectiveness of treatments for respiratory diseases, including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, bronchiectasis, sleep apnoea as well as interstitial lung diseases. The group publishes systematic reviews on the Cochrane Library – this involves drafting and editing reviews and coordinating peer review. The group contributes to the global effort to identify reports of randomised controlled trials, which are published in Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL). The group also contributes to the development or modification of guidelines both nationally and internationally, provides training in systematic review methods and advocates for evidence informed practice.
Utilisation of routine health databases
We have developed expertise over many years analysing routine electronic primary and secondary databases to carry our epidemiological research. Recent projects have included investigating the health impacts of partner bereavement and health checks for adults with learning disability. We are currently collaborating with clinical pharmacologists from St George’s, University of London and St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and community pharmacists within the local Health Improvement Network, using a large primary care database to examine polypharmacy in patients with complex multi-morbidities. We are aiming to develop and test an intervention using onward referral to clinical pharmacology to optimise the use of medicines in this complex patient group.

 

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