Trends in evidence use in public health decision-making

A new CLAHRC publication offers valuable insight into the types of evidence used by decision-makers working in public health. In 2013, responsibility for public health services and planning shifted from the “health” boundary to local authority control. These services can range from health checks to open access sexual health.

CLAHRC researchers examined English local public health decision-making in a new review of what evidence is used and how by those planning, designing and commissioning services.

The review, published in a new paper in the Journal Implementation Science identifies three clear trends in evidence use

  • the primacy of local evidence
  • the important role of local experts in providing evidence and knowledge, and
  • the high value placed on local evaluation evidence despite the varying methodological rigour.

Barriers to the use of research evidence included issues around access and availability of applicable research evidence, and indications that the use of evidence could be perceived as a bureaucratic process.

This is part of a wider project entitled Exploring decision-making processes and knowledge requirements in public health

 

Read the full paper

Kneale et al. Implementation Science (2017) 12:53
DOI 10.1186/s13012-017-0577-9
The use of evidence in English local public health decision-making: a systematic scoping review

Andrew Hutchings

Andrew studied management science (operational research) at Lancaster University. He has worked in industry and spent five years at the Audit Commission. He joined the Department of Health Services Research and Policy at LSHTM after completing a MSc in Medical Statistics. His main research interests are in the area of health care quality improvement, service delivery and organisational research. Recent research has included work examing the routine use of patient reported outcomes measures (PROMs) in elective surgery and TABUL, a NIHR HTA-funded study comparing the performance of ultrasonography and temporal artery biopsy for diagnosing giant cell arteritis.

Dr Chiara De Poli

Chiara De Poli is a Research Assistant, pursuing research on health service management. She holds an MSc in Public Management and a BSc in Public Management from Bocconi University, in Milan. Before joining LSE in 2011, Chiara worked in the field of evaluating EU co-funded programmes, both within academia and for a consulting firm in Italy.

 

Professor Gwyn Bevan

Gwyn Bevan is Professor of Policy Analysis and, from 2011 to 2013 was head of the Department of Management, at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has worked as an academic at Warwick Business School and St Thomas’ Hospital and Bristol Medical Schools. He has also worked in industry, consulting, the Treasury, and for the Commission for Health Improvement (2001 to 2003), where he was Director of the Office for Information on Healthcare Performance.

Dr Madhavi Bajekal

I lead a research team investigating the drivers of long-run improvements in longevity and, particularly, socioeconomic inequalities in morbidity and mortality trends and projections.

Since 2009, my research at UCL has been supported by Legal and General Assurance Society where I am Principal Scientist (Epidemiology) in the Longevity Science Team. Uniquely within the pensions industry, this is a successful example of an embedded industry/academia collaboration to support independent research which is both scientifically novel and of practical relevance to the industry.

Before joining UCL, I was in a senior civil servant at the Office for National Statistics (Deputy Director, Social and Healthcare Analysis); the Chair of Eurostat’s ‘Partnership in Health’ programme; and a Consultant Advisor to the Department of Health’s health survey programme. I began my career as a health analyst at the Department of Primary Care, Imperial College London after completing my PhD in SOAS (University of London).

Prof Myra Bluebond-Langner

Myra Bluebond-Langner is Professor and True Colours Chair in Palliative Care for Children and Young People at University College London, Institute of Child Health. In this capacity she also heads the Louis Dundas Centre for Children’s Palliative Care – an academic and clinical partnership involving the Institute of Child Health and Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children. She is also Board of Governors’ Professor of Anthropology and founder and former director of the Rutgers University Center for Children and Childhood Studies.