Laura E. Fischer is the Public Involvement Coordinator and Researcher for a new programme of work in the NIHR School for Public Health Research that aims to understand and improve public mental health. Here she explains why recruiting a team of co-researchers based upon ‘expertise by experience’ is such a complex task and the guiding principles that helped her.
Public mental health is an international priority and a major challenge for public health practitioners. However, the evidence base regarding effective interventions is limited. The public mental health programme involves applied public health research in children, young people and adults. We aim to generate new knowledge which practitioners can use to deliver impact.
The public mental health programme will work with the children, young people and families programme to research mental well-being in this population. It will also work closely with the places and communities programme to develop and employ a standard set of public mental health outcomes to assess the impact on mental health of environmental, economic and welfare system changes, and help identify potential interventions to offset those effects.
Public mental health is a current NIHR SPHR research programme (2017-2022).
Public mental health (PMH) is a national priority and a challenge for public health practitioners. However the evidence base regarding effective interventions for at risk adults is limited.
This project (WP4) is part of phase one of the SPHR PMH programme. It has been designed to identify and describe promising PMH interventions in adults from literature and in practice. The purpose is to inform phase two of the PMH programme, where we will deliver larger scale, in-depth evaluations of one or two interventions for adults across SPHR.
January 2019 - July 2020
This work package will focus on the mechanisms by which educational psychosocial and physical environments impact on the mental health of children and young people (ages 45-18). Our focus is on formal, statutory education settings. It will identify interventions or changes within those settings that have the potential to improve mental health outcomes and inequalities for all young people (including, but not limited to, at-risk groups) among this age group. It sits jointly within the Public mental health (PMH) and the Children, young people and families (CYPF) programmes.
January 2019 - June 2020
Evaluations of Public mental health (PMH) initiatives have been criticised as often fragmented and poor quality, with a wide range of outcome measures used. This means that comparing between studies and larger scale ‘natural experiments’ are difficult. We have therefore identified a need for a common agreed core outcome set for PMH.
The overarching aim of the proposed project is to develop, validate and agree a suite of core outcome sets appropriate for use in evaluative public mental health research.
January 2019 - June 2021
This is the first of four Work Packages (WPs) in the first phase of the Public mental health (PMH) programme. The PMH programme focuses on promotion, prevention and population-wide approaches to influence positive and negative mental health outcomes. Extensive consultation and deliberation has established that the public mental health field has a serious and fundamental gap in knowledge at present, which inhibits systematic progress. This is the absence of overarching, evidenced conceptual frameworks with linked meaningful (in terms of lived current and future lives) outcomes.
January 2019 - June 2020
Coping Through Football is an innovative project in North East London that offers football coaching sessions to aid the recovery of young people and adults experiencing mental health problems.
May 2016 - July 2018
This research project will compare stop smoking support services offered to people with recognised mental health problems and the general population.
August 2017 - August 2018
This work aims to explore how current changes to the role of housing officers at social housing providers has affected the health and wellbeing of residents, local communities and on other local services.
April 2018 - March 2019
This research project will look at parenting interventions which may be adapted for non-substance misusing parents and caregivers within families where one parent misuses substances.
April 2018 - September 2019
This project aimed to evaluate the outcomes of the Time Credits project in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, to determine the initiative’s potential to tackle social exclusion and loneliness, and to assess the extent to which it can improve wellbeing and increase community cohesion and social capital.
August 2015 - May 2017