Health And Social Care

Reasearch Works (RWL) considers health topics an area of considerable expertise. RWL has recently conducted the qualitative arm of the Healthy Foundations Segmentation for the COI and Department of Health (DH).  This gives us an excellent understanding of the motivational, life-stage and environmental variables that drive public attitudes towards health and health services, especially amongst disadvantaged sectors of the population.  RWL delivered a paper on Healthy Foundations at the World Social Marketing Conference in Dublin in 2011.

RWL has very extensive experience of research around choice and how the public chooses to use NHS services.

Most recently, we have looked at:

  • The NHS Services campaign: looking at communications approaches intended to persuade the public to use NHS service appropriately – initially amongst the general public, exploring a number of positionings for the NHS and in a later study, amongst NHS Managers: examining how service use issues are being tackled at PCT level in particular (including the Choose Well campaign)

Since 2004, amongst many other DH initiatives we have evaluated:

  • Role of the state and behaviour change: looking at the state and relationship to its citizens around health choices.

  • The ‘Get the Right Treatment’ campaign amongst public, patients and NHS staff

  • The ‘Caring in Many Ways’ campaign amongst public, patients and staff

  • An NHS Access campaign, which intended to signpost proper use of emergency treatment options

  • Choice and the Patient Pathway: exploring scenarios in which patients and the public do and do not value choice

  • Choose and Book: examining all aspects of this mechanism, from initial concept development through to naming and brand identity

RWL has very extensive experience of behaviour change communications research. Most recently, we have looked at:

  • perceptions of the NHS, its brand identity and potential re-positioning of the NHS in the light of likely budgetary changes

  • staff and public communications around the QIPP agenda

  • work around a campaign to explain how HCAIs have been tackled by the NHS

  • a campaign by the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence to increase public awareness of regulatory mechanisms in the healthcare sector

  • the branding and promotion of a national Social Care helpline and online resource

  • development and implementation of the ‘Catch it, Bin it, Kill it’ pandemic flu campaign

  • evaluation of a potential Alcohol Minimum Unit Pricing communications campaign for the public

  • public communications around the Summary Care Record service

  • communications around the issue of making some NHS Constitution pledges in legally binding rights.

RWL considers business and finance a specialism. We have consulted the business audience on behalf of a very wide range of clients, as described below:

  • Our current and recent project work for The Pension Regulator, amongst stakeholders, trustees, accountants, HR professionals and IFAs, has given us a strong appreciation of the key factors driving likely compliance to automatic enrolment amongst employers, and of changes shaping the pensions landscape.

  • Evaluation of a new range of pensions literature encouraging greater take-up of occupational pensions schemes on behalf of AEGON.

  • Our experience of researching compliance in a business context has been on behalf of HM Revenue & Customs on various topics – VAT; National Insurance, Employing Migrant Workers and business support. Our most recent project was inspired by the introduction of Failure to take Reasonable Care legislation. The research examined current understanding of record-keeping requirements for employers and explored the ways in which different types of employer approach record-keeping and factors driving non-compliance. We worked with HMRC to develop and test guidance with employers to assess its likely impact on practice.

  • Assessment of the UKOnline website amongst business owners and their intermediaries in a variety of sectors.

  • Examining levels of interest and use of Health and Safety Executive communications and website amongst business owners, directors, financial directors, company accountants and auditors.

  • A recent project for Allianz Insurance focused on a new line of commercial insurance solutions for small to medium sized businesses.

  • Consulting EBCs, IFAS, HR managers, Company Accountants, Actuaries and Auditors amongst medium sized enterprises about employee benefits solutions on behalf of AEGON Scottish Equitable.

  • Developing business support communications on behalf of BusinessLink (BIS) via letter and email.

  • Encouraging business owners to allow staff to become volunteer fire-fighters on behalf of The Fire Service (Department of Communities and Local Government).

  • Exploring entrepreneurial businesses on behalf of BIS (working in collaboration with Peter Jones from TV’s Dragon’s Den).

Over the past year RWL has quantitatively evaluated a number of campaigns including:

  • Cancer Research UK (CRUK) evaluation of Cancer Awareness campaign in Warrington involving pre & post quantitative complemented by ethnographic observation days at events plus qualitative depths with target audience.

  • Cancer Research UK (CRUK) evaluation of ‘T4 on the Beach’ during the event itself interviewing a quota controlled sample of the target audience

  • CRUK evaluation of Community Pharmacist campaign in partnership with Morrissons.

  • Anglian Water evaluation of ‘Love Every Drop’ campaign pre and post evaluation of the impact amongst households and businesses.

Our qualitative evaluation work is extensive and has covered most topics and major disease/chronic conditions. Most recently experience includes:

  • research into cancer, cancer prevention and early diagnosis of cancer, including strategic NAEDI

  • research in Liverpool PCT area amongst the target audience in relation to access to NHS services and maintaining good health through winter period. RWL evaluated a range of communication approaches, messages and formats with the target audience (over 50’s C2DE)

  • strategic development and evaluation for Department of Health’s ‘Be Clear on Cancer’ campaign. To date we have evaluated radio, press, poster and leaflet executions urging the general public to present early with symptoms of:

    • Bowel Cancer

    • Lung Cancer

    • Breast Cancer

    • Oesophageal Cancer

    • Bladder Cancer

More generally, Research Works Limited has a long history of supporting the creative development of national, regional and local public facing campaigns.

  • our recent research on behalf of North Merseyside PCT, developing a campaign designed to drive appropriate use of a wide range of NHS services. We enjoyed our experience of researching local communities across Liverpool.

  • Other examples of our involvement in campaigns developed at a national level, but implemented locally include the development of NHS Direct’s campaign to encourage non-users to consider using the NHS Direct telephone and web service and the development of Department of Health’s campaign to promote public, patient and health professional action to prevent Healthcare Associated Infections.

  • High profile examples of our national campaign development work include development of HM Revenue & Custom’s Self Assessment campaign (‘Tax doesn’t have to be taxing’ with Adam Hart-Davis and Moira Stuart) and The Electoral Commission’s ‘Don’t do politics’ campaign.

More broadly, we are specialists in policy development and audience testing research and has experience of working in the following sectors:

  • Transport: Department of Transport, European Commission, Scottish Enterprise and Department of the Environment (Northern Ireland)

  • Travel: Which?, Isle of Man Tourism and the Irish Tourist Board

  • Financial: AEGON Scottish Equitable, Allianz Insurance, and Barclays Bank

  • FMCG: Tesco, Boots the Chemist, Moy Park, Pork Farms/Bowyers

  • Media: BBC, Redwood, Emap and IPC

  • Retail: Tesco, Comet and Boots the Chemist

  • Consumers: for clients such as Diageo and Wyeth

  • Regulators: OFT: scams and doorstep selling; Ofcom: Community Radio licensing; NICE: Doctors’ use of prescribing guidance and resources; MHRA: early access to trial medicines; CHRE: experiences of fitness to practice hearings; Ofwat: disadvantaged consumers of water metering; Electoral Commission: evaluation of local election question wording; The Pensions Regulator: employers responses to auto-enrolment; GMC: developing a diversity policy.

Specifically, our experience in relation to data access and privacy is as follows:

  • Department of Health created a steering committee to examine the extent to which the NHS makes records available to patients and their representatives (e.g. solicitors). The research explored the processes involved in making patient records safely and securely available.

  • NHS Connecting For Health have produced a suite of materials for the general public and health professionals explaining how electronic Summary Care Records work and who can access the information.

  • RWL also explored the extent to which public information collected by the NHS can be used by third parties through a project on behalf of the Medical Research Information Service (part of the NHS Information Service).

  • Which? commissioned RWL to explore public attitudes towards government handling of sensitive household information

  • HMRC asked RWL to evaluate the reputational impacts of a major data loss incident.

RWL has carried out research looking at Equality and Diversity policies on behalf of clients such as:

  • The General Medical Council

  • HM Revenue & Customs

  • DWP

  • British Medical Journal

In addition, we have conducted research on behalf of both Which? and BUPA in relation to sources for health advice and information.