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Findings from University of Oxford research discussed with GPs to support better health care delivery.

Primary care researchers update local gps
Professor Richard Hobbs opens the first session of Oxford Primary Care 2015.
“There was an energy and dynamism in the air that showed how willing many GPs are to work in partnership with academics to gather evidence for how best to look after patients and the NHS.”
- Dr Christine A'Court, GP at Broadshires Health Centre, Carterton.

More than 100 general practitioners from across Oxfordshire and the Thames Valley met University of Oxford researchers last week to hear how their latest cutting-edge clinical research can be applied in consulting rooms across the region.

The one-day event, Oxford Primary Care 2015, was led by Oxford University’s Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences to help fast-track improved ways of delivering healthcare so that patients can benefit from new and better treatments when they visit their GP.

13 researchers from the department, many of whom also work as part-time GPs, covered topics such as infectious disease, obesity, smoking, blood pressure management, diagnostic testing, and how communications technologies can transform a patient’s interaction with their doctor.

Dr Kay Wang, academic clinical lecturer and part-time GP at Windrush Medical Practice in Witney, discussed her work on the diagnosis and treatment of postinfectious cough, which can affect as many as 40% of patients who have an acute viral respiratory tract infection. Paul Aveyard, Professor of Behavioural Medicine and part-time GP discussed his latest research into how GPs can best help patients who wish to give up smoking.

Oxford University’s Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences carries out research and clinical trials in many areas of healthcare and health service delivery to improve the way GPs and other primary care practitioners across the NHS deliver care to their patients. Much of this work is done collaboratively with surgeries who help recruit patients into clinical trials, with many of the research findings being used as evidence to transform health policy locally, nationally and internationally.

Professor Richard Hobbs, Head of the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, said:

“Working with GPs to recruit patients into our trials is vital to ensure our research is relevant and reliable. As well as feeding back some of our latest research findings directly to GPs, we also wanted to show our gratitude to those practices who work with us on a regular basis to develop robust evidence that can transform health and care policy.”

Dr Christine A’Court, GP at Broadshires Health Centre in Carterton, said:

“GPs at the coalface encounter questions about best practice regularly during the working day and were delighted to hear about efforts to resolve some areas of uncertainty. Academic staff were glad of the chance to thank GPs from practices participating in research, and obtain their feedback on previous and planned studies.

“There was an energy and dynamism in the air that showed how willing many GPs are to work in partnership with academics to gather evidence for how best to look after patients and the NHS.”

The research day was delivered in partnership with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Clinical Research Network (CRN): Thames Valley and South Midlands, who provide infrastructure to allow high-quality clinical research to take place in the NHS.

 > See the Storify for this event

About the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford:

The Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences undertakes internationally acclaimed teaching and research that improves the primary care that GP practices deliver. It has been one of the world’s most important primary care centres for the past 15 years. The department was ranked the top centre for primary care research in the UK in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework exercise and was similarly judged a top centre in assessments from 1996 to 2008. The department teaches elements of the University of Oxford undergraduate programme in Medicine including arranging placements for medical students in GP practices. Research is led by internationally renowned scientists, many of whom are practicing GP’s, and covers a  broad range of primary care issues including health behaviours, cardiovascular disease, infection, health technology, global health and patient experience. www.phc.ox.ac.uk www.twitter.com/oxprimarycare

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