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Public Involvement



Public Involvement

Despite the ongoing situation with Coronavirus (COVID-19) we continue to provide PPI support via virtual/online PPI Consumer Panel discussion groups and meetings.  The RDS PPI lead contributed to a blog recently which outlines some of the things to consider if you are planning on conducting online PPI during this current Pandemic.

What is Public Involvement?

Public Involvement (PI) in research is when health and social care researchers work in active partnership with members of the public. Public involvement is often referred to as Patient and Public Involvement (PPI).

PPI in research is defined as research carried out ‘with’ or ‘by’ members of the public rather than ‘to’, ‘about’ or ‘for’ them.

PPI should not be confused with:

  • Public Engagement which refers to information and knowledge about research being provided and shared to the public via media reports, science festivals or discussions;


  • Public Participation whereby patients and members of the public take part in clinical trials, or qualitative research e.g. by completing questionnaires or as members of focus groups.

Why you may want to include Public Involvement support

  • identify relevant condition-specific patient support groups;
  • advice on how to include public involvement at each stage of the research cycle in meaningful and appropriate ways;
  • funding providers value the knowledge and experience of patients and members of the public.

What expertise can a Public Involvement specialist offer?

  • tailored face-to-face advice specific to your research project;
  • a toolkit of examples and resources to develop an appropriate Public Involvement strategy both to design and deliver your research project;
  • access to the RDS NENC Public Involvement Consumer Panel for constructive feedback (face to face or online) on the potential for direct patient benefit, feasibility, readability and acceptability.

 What to think about before meeting with a Public Involvement adviser

  • have you spoken to any patients about your research; what did they think of your plans;
  • would any of your patients like to be involved in helping you to plan and deliver your study;
  • do you have access to any existing groups of patients who might be able to give a helpful view on your research ideas?