Prevention and Early Detection in Health and Social Care

The Prevention and Early Detection in Health and Social Care is a cross-cutting theme.

This theme aims to:

  • Identify and address ways to support different populations and potentially vulnerable groups to sustain their health and wellbeing.
  • Better understand how to help key groups to recognise, at the earliest opportunity, signs of illness or disease in themselves and others and to take action.
  • Work with local communities and health and social care staff to develop and evaluate strategies for early detection and referral to services, based on research evidence.
  • Clarify the currently under-determined distinction, which is crucial for effective policy and care, between population screening, targeted screening, proactive and reactive early detection strategies.

We will frame our work around conditions of practical concern to our partner organisations, local policy makers and local communities.

The overarching theme priorities are:

  1. Addressing inequalities
  2. Systems and determinants of health, care and wellbeing

Current priority areas for research:

  • Diet, obesity and malnutrition
  • Infection control
  • Cancer
  • Carers’ health and wellbeing 

Current projects

  • PEDHSC01: NIHR CRN-Eastern, social care research readiness mapping project 
  • PEDHSC02: Older Peoples use of Meals on Wheels Service
  • PEDHSC03: Young people and obesity in the populations in focus
  • PEDHSC04: Removal of barriers to social inclusion and social participation for children and young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (SIIDD)
  • PEDHSC05: Evaluating the use of electronic simulation dolls to assess parenting capacity (DAP)
  • PEDHSC06: Health Behaviour in School-aged Children Survey (HBSC Part 3)
  • PEDHSC07: Changing conceptions: revisiting lesbian parents and their children
  • PEDHSC08: Literature Review of Signs and Symptoms of Acute Kidney Injury
  • PEDHSC10: Supporting the Evaluation of Stevenage Borough Council Public Health Interventions
  • PEDHSC11: The impact of COVID-19 on food systems and practices in the East of England
  • PEDHSC13: Evaluating interventions to increase the uptake of bowel screening among BAME communities in Luton 
  • PEDHSC14: Beyond Words: Co-creation And Evaluation of a Visual REsource to support COVID-19 Vaccine uptake in people with Intellectual Disabilities
  • PEDHSC15: Muscle Help Foundation Impact study: Evaluation of the impact of Muscle Dream experiences
  • PEDHSC16: SLOW Impact study: where did SLOW and I meet, where are SLOW and I now and what are the journeys with SLOW through grief of those we re-engage with life, following the death of a child
  • PEDHSC17: Public Health Intervention Responsive Studies Team (PHIRST)
  • PEDHSC18: Insight into families and adults in relation to the prevention and management of weight gain
  • PEDHSC19: Dietary Inequalities and Families with No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) in the UK
  • PEDHSC20: The Food Foundation Qualitative Research Proposal: Gaining insight into food, diet practices and nutrition during the early year’s lifespan
  • PEDHSC21: Exploring neonatal nurses’ and parents’ understanding of the factors that enhance and hinder communication and early interaction between preterm infants and their parents 
  • PEDHSC22: Developing a co-designed intervention to increase COVID-19 vaccination confidence among young people and their parents in the Black African and Caribbean communities in Watford 
  • PEDHSC23: Engaging South Asian women in breast cancer care

Policy Briefings:

Since May 2020, we have interviewed East of England residents, community stakeholders and professionals involved in food provision about how people across the region are managing with their food and how they are being supported locally.

Each policy briefing is tailored to one of four population groups and includes policy recommendations for their specific needs in relation to food and health inequalities:

Access a PDF document with all four briefings here

Read an interim report of our findings here and more information of the study here


Our BITEsize case studies for theme research highlight how we are Brokering Innovation Through Evidence (BITE) and summarise the impact of projects across the region. Download the BITES for this theme below:


2020 Highlights  

You can download a PEDHSC theme flyer below.