The Pregnancy Research Subgroup is responsible for developing a framework for a strategy for research on pregnancy.
This includes mapping current funding for pregnancy research and analysis of evidence gaps, raising the profile of pregnancy research, engaging key stakeholders and identifying barriers and enablers to high quality pregnancy research.
As part of this project a review has been commissioned by the Department of Health, which aims to develop a comprehensive overview of the pregnancy research needs and expenditure in the UK over the last five years and look at how this compares to the current funding landscape.
The review will be conducted by independent not-for-profit research institute, RAND Europe, whose mission is to help improve policy and decision making through research and analysis.
Why is this research important?
“A woman’s life course offers multiple opportunities to prevent predictable morbidity and mortality and to empower women (and, through them, their families) with information to take positive steps towards health.”
This quote comes from the 2014 report written by the UK’s Chief Medical Officer, Dame Sally Davies, called The Health of the 51%: Women.
In it, she made a number of recommendations including that the UK Clinical Research Collaboration (UK CRC) work with research funders to review the research needs and spend in the area of pregnancy in order to improve outcomes such as pre-term birth and develop and evaluate optimum models for antenatal and postnatal care.
How is NCT involved?
Agnes Hann, NCT Research & Evaluation Manager, is a member of the Pregnancy Research Subgroup, and Rachael Leonard, NCT Member, is a parent representative on the advisory panel for the pregnancy research review.
NCT’s role on both groups is to raise issues that we know are important to parents. We advise on how to engage and involve a diverse range of parents in deciding on the research priorities and provide feedback on the tool set up for consultation with stakeholders.
The expert advisory group has also advised on the development of the search strategy and classification framework and will review the interim findings and review the final report.
What is the current status of the research project?
RAND has been commissioned to conduct a review into current and recent pregnancy research funding. Survey and funding data have been analysed and RAND are preparing for final consultation with stakeholders.
Opportunities to get involved
RAND are now preparing for the final two workshops of the study. The first will be for members of the public, to be held on 18 September 2019 - find out more and register for this workshop. There will also be a workshop for professional stakeholders on 3 October 2019.