By Dr Nirav Parikh, Old Age Psychiatrist, Fleetwood Health & Wellbeing Centre

Parkinson’s Advanced MasterClass 36A, November 2019

Dr Thomas, a fellow delegate at the Advanced Masterclass, at a casual tea break, suggested to talk to Dr Dunne regards the project. At the Dinner, I discussed with Dr Dunne, regards idea for the project.

We identified that Dementia associated with Parkinson’s disease will be a good area for me to do the project for obvious reasons, due to my background of working in Memory assessment services as an Old Age Psychiatrist. Dr Dunne informed me of a research he is involved in related to patients with Lewy Body Dementias.

I have been involved in many research projects before but none from the outset. I have either been involved as inherited a project or involved in research process where Trust is involved and it landed on my table.

As most of the modern health organisations the Trust I work for is also quite keen in research involvement- in fact that was one of the reasons for delay in getting me the authorisation to work with Dr Dunne’s research team. My small Memory Assessment team has achieved a difficult feat of being the highest research recruiter in Dementia Research recently.

I am trying to establish that there is an environment where I could get involved in a research project. I telephoned the Research and Development team of the Trust. The person was very helpful, suggested to write an e- mail outlining the project and my role. The e- mail I wrote was forwarded to an enthusiastic and efficient member of the Trust research team, who knew exactly about the project and the next steps.

She contacted Dr Dunne’s research team and the organiser of the research project to understand what will be my role and in that way Trust’s involvement in the project. The Trust tried to convince the organiser to grant it a status of Research site which caused a little delay in granting me an authorisation to get involved with the rsearch.

As the organisers declined the request, the Trust confirmed the status, as PIC- participant identification centre for my team. Once I got the authorisation from my Trust, Dr Dunne got me in touch with two members of the research team already working on the project. I have contacted them and shared my mobile and nhs.net email to communicate through the entire process.

I have been made aware of the research protocol and process, including exclusion and inclusion criteria. Also made aware of few subsidiary research project. I am trying to get my Trust to agree to involvement in the subsidiary project if participant not eligible for the main research project.

I have now got the list of participants, need to contact the identified individuals and their carer, to gain the consent. After that I will get the consenting potential participants in touch with the Research team members allocated to me. I have requested the Research team to keep me involved at every stage of the research process especially to update me of the conclusions, as it will be a good outcome to be aware of for management of patients with Lewy Body dementia.