Getting started: becoming involved

Do you want to get involved in research but aren’t sure where to start? Learn about public involvement and how to get involved

People at the event (see info in notes)

Why is public involvement important?

At some point in our lives, we will all depend on health and social care services. Research is trying to improve these services by investigating new ways to detect and treat conditions, and better ways to provide care.

However, to make sure research is answering the right questions in the right way, it is important to include the insights and views of people who use these services, like you.

Involving patients, carers and the public in research can help make it better quality, more relevant and more likely to have an impact. Public involvement is an intrinsic part of research in the UK.

Why should I get involved in research?

There are lots of different reasons people get involved in research. For some people it’s an opportunity to give something back. For others, they might have had a difficult experience they want to share. For many people, they have a really positive experience partnering with researchers and they enjoy being involved.

Being involved in research is open to everyone – you don’t need any qualifications and you don’t always need to have a specific experience or condition – all you need is enthusiasm!

Not sure where to start?

This page contains information that can help get you started, including NIHR public involvement guidance and guidance from other organisations.  If you’re looking for an opportunity to get involved in research, you might want to check out People in Research, or some opportunities offered by the NIHR.

Ready to learn about public involvement? Take a look at some of the resources below!

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