Article 18.09.2020

ARC East of England to address national health and care research priorities


People across the country will benefit from targeted research projects to improve health and care, led and supported by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) East of England, hosted by CPFT.

Working together on successful bids in 2019, the national network of 15 Applied Research Collaborations (NIHR ARCs) has secured over £13 million to develop additional research programmes over the next three years, to tackle the most pressing challenges for the health and care system.

The NIHR ARC East of England will co-lead national work to improve mental health for adults, children and young people, driven by the Mental Health Priority Network in partnership with ARC South London, and will also be a key collaborator in projects to address health and care inequalities, prevention – including behavioural risk factors, and improve adult social care and social work.

CPFT Non-Executive Director and NIHR ARC East of England Director Professor Peter Jones (pictured) said:

“This development puts our regional expertise and resources at the heart of national research to improve health and care outcomes across the life course by identifying and putting best evidence into practice.

“Building on their core function – collaboration - in focused areas, the ARCs can accelerate discovery of new ways of working that will have the greatest impact on populations most in need. Strengthening national partnerships between ARCs will ensure these funds are used efficiently and projects are joined up, to link the skills and knowledge of health and care staff, academics and experts working on solutions in different regions.

 “Our regional and national projects continue to be driven by engaging and involving service users, local communities, health and care providers, commissioners and other partners to deliver evidence-based service change, making a difference with applied research.”

The NIHR ARC East of England launched in October 2019 to deliver a five year programme of research focused on regional areas with particular health and care challenges, including Great Yarmouth and Waveney, Peterborough and Fenland, Stevenage and Thurrock. It formed a new partnership with the Universities of Cambridge, East Anglia, Hertfordshire and Essex together with regional providers of health and social care services, supported by the Eastern Academic Health Science Network.

CPFT Chief Executive and ARC East of England Board Chair Tracy Dowling (pictured first left) and Mental Health Over the Life Course Theme Lead Professor Jesus Perez (centre back) both have key national roles in prioritising the best evidence for health and care. ARC Implementation Leads Andrée le May (third left, front) and John Gabbay (third left, behind) are driving how this evidence is put into practice, with communities including service users, carers and health and care professionals who can use it in daily life.  

Find more information on the national priority areas and ARC partnerships