SRMRC Patient, Carer and Public Involvement Day

07 March 2014

More than 25 patients and relatives attended the recent patient, carer and public involvement (PCPI) trauma research event, organised by the SRMRC, the UK’s largest trauma research centre.

The event was held under the theme of Pre-Hospital and Emergency Care. Sister Melanie Brown, Emergency Department Clinical Lead and Sister Aisling Clarkson, Lead Trauma Research Nurse explained what preparations the trauma team makes in the resuscitation room before the patient arrives, how the patient is managed once in the emergency department and how the team balances managing friends and family whilst trying to give immediate care for the patient.

P C Steve Jubb from the Regional Collision Investigation Unit outlined the role of forensics in determining the cause of the collision and the event was closed by Carole Rawlings, the Associate Director of Patient Affairs who proposed setting up a Patient Support Group for trauma patients.  This would enable patients who had successfully recovered from trauma to support patients and families undergoing the same type of experience.

Clinical researchers updated the group on two project areas currently being undertaken by the SRMRC.

The first was introduced by Mr Iain Smith, a surgical registrar and clinical research fellow of the SRMRC who has experience of working in battlefield trauma surgery in Afghanistan.  Mr Smith is researching the use of magnetic and electrical muscle stimulation as a form of artificial exercise to reduce muscle wasting in the thigh muscles of patients in critical care after trauma.

He consulted with the PPI group about whether he could improve the way the study was explained to relatives of potential research patients in order to increase participation. In this type of study, it is normally necessary to ask relatives for their opinion about a patient’s willingness to participate in research as the patient tends to be unconscious while in critical care.  The group provided highly constructive feedback that will be incorporated into the new trial programme.

The second relates to traumatic brain injury and how research involving a pupillometer is helping to significantly impact the way that this is identified, assessed and treated in civilian and military patients.

The SRMC holds a series of themed events throughout the year.  The team invites past, current and future patients, relatives and members of the public to discuss their views on services and potential improvements.  It also provides a great opportunity to provide an update on current and potential SRMRC research projects.