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The NIHR Programme Development Grants (PDG) social care call seeks research proposals that address the challenges and aim to improve the evidence base for adult social care (including the transition from children’s to adult services). PDGs are available to carry out preparatory work to develop a future Programme Grants for Applied Research (PGfAR) research application on adult social care. They can also be obtained to further develop an existing or ongoing programme of research to explore social care perspectives arising from the programme.

Applications to the PDG social care call should be made with the support of an NHS body or other provider of NHS services in England. If an application is successful, a contract will be placed with that organisation for delivery of the research. All funds for the research will be paid to the NHS organisation or other provider of NHS services to administer and distribute to the collaborating organisations.

Deadline for proposals: 24 November 2021

Find out more here.

“We are seeking expressions of interest for care home participation and we have prepared a study outline for interested care homes (see below), which includes a link to our expression of interest form and a dedicated FluCare email address.  We are seeking care homes (residential and/or nursing, registered for people over the age of 65), from London, Leicestershire/Rutland (LLR) and Norfolk. The feasibility study is taking place this flu season with the main study next year, so our priority at the moment is to get care homes interested and signed up as soon as possible. details below:

FluCare is a research study being run by the University of East Anglia and NHS Norfolk & Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group.

What is FluCare?

FluCare is a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)-funded project exploring whether offering staff flu vaccination clinics in the care home can improve flu vaccination rates.  The project will take place this flu season and the 2022 flu season.

What is involved?

  • The researchers want to see if offering flu vaccination clinics specifically for staff in the care home, along with financial incentives for homes, can increase uptake.
  • They are looking for care homes to take part in a small-scale study this Autumn and a large trial next year, again in the flu season.
  • Some care homes will receive the flu vaccination clinics and others will not, but all homes will receive £500 for taking part in the study and providing monitoring information.
  • The researchers will also want to interview some staff– staff who give up their time for interviews will also be paid.
  • Within each care home, staff who complete a short online survey will be entered into a £100 voucher prize draw.

What types of care homes can get involved? 

  • The project is looking for residential or nursing care homes for people over the age of 65
  • The care homes need to employ more than 10 staff
  • The care homes need to be located in London, Norfolk or LLR (Leicester/Leicestershire/Rutland).

When will the project start? 

  • This October – see below on how to sign up

Why should your care home get involved?

  • Your care home will receive £500 for participating
  • It will help you to think about your flu vaccination strategy, as you will have sight of early findings
  • It will help to build the evidence base for government on what works to improve flu vaccination, beyond the rather blunt instrument of mandatory vaccination and set out the case for more collaboration/ support for care home staff vaccination

What do I do to take part?

  • Complete a FluCare expression of interest form by following this link

If you have any questions please contact:

NIHR RfSC research is expected to have a high degree of involvement from relevant users of social care and social care practitioners throughout the research.

RfSC welcomes high quality proposals from researchers and practitioners which are focused on:

  • Social care needs and relevant outcomes (which could be quality of life, social or health care related, as appropriate to the study, population etc.)
  • Developing a more robust evidence base for current ways of working
  • Developing and evaluating new ways of delivering social care
  • Secondary data analysis, record linkage and reviews
  • Research methods development
  • Care users’ and carers’ circumstances and needs
  • Those who deliver social care including unpaid carers and the staff and professionals involved in the delivery of social care e.g. social workers.

Applicants considering submitting a Stage 1 application should consider submitting an outline of their proposal for guidance before official submission. This can be done using the pre-submission form. This is non-mandatory and purely aimed at helping potential applicants to engage with the requirements of the call (e.g. eligibility and remit). For other questions, contact

Submission deadline for application is 1pm on 19 January 2022.

For more details please click here 

This session will provide information on:

  • details of the Research for Patient Benefit programme
  • views from a successful RfPB applicant
  • the application process and what funders are looking for in a submission
  • the support the NIHR Research Design Service (RDS) can provide in the preparation of your application
  • advice about Patient and Public Involvement (PPI).

Who should attend

This event is aimed at researchers in the NHS, public health and social care, as well as academics from universities across England.

Informal drop-in sessions

If you would like an initial informal chat with an RDS adviser, who will provide initial guidance and information on how the Research Design Service can help with your proposal development to RfPB, we are offering drop-in sessions after the event from 1.00 pm to 3.30 pm. Please indicate on the registration form whether you would like to book a slot.


10.00 am          Welcome and introduction

Prof Fiona Lobban, Associate Director, RDS NW

10.10 am          An introduction to the RfPB programme and top tips for applying

Dr Christina Jones, RfPB panel member

10.30 am          The experience of a successful applicant to RfPB

Dr Peter Taylor, University of Manchester

10.50 am          Questions and answer session with the presenters

11.10 am          Break

11.20 am          How RDS can help you with your mental health research RfPB application

Dr Kenny Finlayson, Adviser, RDS NW

11.40 am          Importance of patient and public involvement in mental health research, including the RDS NW Public Involvement Fund and Public Involvement

Dr Hazel Morbey, Specialist Public Involvement Adviser, RDS NW

Chris Lodge, Service User Researcher, Lancaster University

12.00 noon     Questions and answer session with the presenters

12.20 pm          Summary and final questions

12.30 pm          End of session

Download a PDF of the programme here.


To attend this event, please register here.

This session will be a great opportunity for you to hear about carrying out research in social care, and more specifically about the NIHR RfSC Mental Health Call and what makes a successful application.
You will also hear from:
  • The School for Social Care Research on the Mental Health Research landscape
  • The Research Design Service (RDS) about how we can support you.
Date and time
Wednesday, 8 September 2021


To register for this session click here

The NIHR’s Network is looking for someone who can demonstrate a thorough understanding of the research landscape across a range of settings, including care homes, schools and hospices. They will also have a good understanding of the research process, be an effective facilitator and have highly developed communication and interpersonal skills.”

The post is two years (fixed-term or secondment)

Applications close on Monday 30 August.

For more details or to apply please click here 

Call summary

  • This RfSC call is an important part of the Department of Health and Social Care and NIHR’s ongoing interest in strengthening dementia research in less well-supported areas, better understanding the needs of underserved populations and social care needs, as well as identifying best practice in relation to critical points, including diagnosis, hospitalisation, residential care and end-of-life care.
  • The Research for Social Care (RfSC) call, is inviting proposals from eligible research teams to improve the evidence base around social care and dementia
  • This call offers researchers considerable flexibility to focus on any subject area or topic providing that it falls within RfSC’s dementia remit.
  • This call is open to researchers at all career stages, and standard RfSC eligibility rules and criteria will apply. In particular we are looking for researchers from a wide selection of backgrounds, and early career researchers are especially welcomed.
  • The call is for proposals up to £350,000 for a period of up to 36 months with projects needing to commence between 1 September 2022 and 1 March 2023. 
  • Applications are expected to have strong involvement and collaboration with organisations that are responsible for delivering social care and related social care services, for example local authorities and third sector, where appropriate. Applicants may wish to consult the NIHR guidance on co-producing research.

Closes: 13:00 on 19 October 2021

For further information visit website

The NIHR coordinating centre NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre (NETSCC) is looking for members of the public to join one of the following national and regional committees.

Click on the link above to find out more information about each research programme.

What is the role of a public committee member?

Public committee members bring a different but equally important viewpoint to the NIHR committees. They bring the viewpoint of those who research aims to help most (patients, service users, carers, anyone affected by the research topics).

The key responsibilities are:

  • Prepare for committee meetings by reading and assessing meeting papers that are routinely lengthy and complex.
  • Attending committee meetings and taking part in discussions to make recommendations on which research should be funded and/or prioritised
  • Providing feedback on documents between meetings

Format of Meetings

During Covid-19 restrictions all committee meetings have been held online. Once restrictions are lifted we intend to hold two out of three committees virtually and the third face to face (or a similar proportion if meetings are a different frequency). This will be reviewed at some time in the future and the balance of virtual and face to face meetings could change. We understand the importance of relationship building and networking at committees and will ensure that annual face to face meetings provide plenty of opportunity for this. We do not want to hold meetings with a mixture of online and face to face attendance and therefore, other than in very exceptional circumstances, members will be required to attend the face to face meeting and plenty of notice for this will be given.

Who are we looking for?

We are looking for people who have a broad range of interests, current knowledge around health and social care and research, and those who are able to build on their own experience as patients, service users and/or carers.

NIHR is committed to a supportive, inclusive, caring, and positive community. We warmly welcome those of different cultures, ages, ethnicities, and beliefs. Diversity and inclusion are fundamental to our values and vital to our success. We are currently looking to diversify and enrich our committees. We particularly welcome applications from disabled candidates and candidates from an ethnic minority background as they are currently under-represented.

How to apply?

If you are interested in applying, please read the Information Pack and complete the Application Form for more details about the role, eligibility criteria and how to apply.

We strive to host inclusive and accessible events that enable all individuals to engage fully. We will do everything we can to meet individual committee member’s needs. To make a request or for inquiries about accessibility, please contact Caroline.Hillier, email:

The deadline for for applications is 9am Friday 20 August 2021.

If you have any questions about these opportunities please contact us by email:”

Professor Shareen Hussein is leading a study to develop a measurement scale focussed on work-related quality of life for people working in social care – ‘Developing a scale of work-related quality of life for adult social care staff: Phase One’. The work is funded by the NIHR Research for Patient Benefit programme.

The research team would like to invite you to participate in the final stage of this work, by completing a consensus survey on domains of work-related quality of life for social care workers. The survey should take around 15 to 20 minutes to complete and there is an option to enter a prize draw, with three prizes of £50 in high street vouchers.

The survey has been designed through earlier stages of work; specifically, reviewing current evidence, and carrying out interviews/focus group discussions with social care and policy experts, care workers and care providers.

The information that will be collected is not about your own experiences, instead the aim is to seek your views on key areas that might affect care workers’ wellbeing. The results will inform the development of a measure of work-related quality of life for care workers, and will open up debate about working conditions and strategies for improving wellbeing at work in the adult social care sector in England.

If you would like to take part in the survey, please click here.

“This cross NIHR ARC event brings together practitioners from health and social care and all those interested in learning from the pandemic to support older people and staff living and working in care homes.

The webinar starts with a presentation of a completed study looking at visiting in care homes and how these findings can inform future practice. It then showcases three studies. One recently completed that compared the evidence on what needs to be in place for effective online consultations with the experience of health and social care staff during the pandemic, one with emerging findings and one, just starting.

The final session is a discussion between participants and speakers to share learning, support cross organisation working and enable researchers and practitioners to discuss what works for residents and staff.”

Research projects being discussed are:

  • Care home visits during the pandemic: The impact of testing and vaccination and the effects on all involved – Clarissa Giebel, University of Liverpool. NIHR ARC North West Coast
  • Videoconferencing and online technology for communication between care homes and health and social care practitioners – Krystal Warmoth, University of Hertfordshire. NIHR ARC East of England 
  • Identifying approaches, barriers and facilitators to visiting in care homes during the COVID-19 pandemic – Claire Surr, Leeds Beckett University. NIHR ARC Yorkshire and Humber
  • Visit-id: a study of care home visiting arrangements during Covid-19 – Josie Dixon- London School of Economics and Political Science. NIHR ARC North Thames

To register click on Eventbrite