Week(month)note 28th May to 24th June

This is more of a month note as I haven’t written my public notes recently, but regular readers might forgive me given that I have finally published the blog post I have been promising for a while.

Some of the things that happened

I worked with colleagues in communications and product development to develop a synopsis and plan the content for a breakfast broadcast coming up next month. Tero and I also met with colleagues from the Welsh government to talk about how we can support their community of practice and talk about our work at NHS Digital at an event they are planning.

I was involved in lots and lots of recruitment related stuff including workforce models for the directorate and the more enjoyable task of interviewing candidates and hearing about all the brilliant user research work that is going on in their areas of work. I also met with Ben who has just joined to lead work in medicines and linked him to the rest of our user research community.

I attended the Digital Primary Care Evaluation Network and heard research colleagues from across the NHS talk about the patient experience of remote care, the impact of the pandemic on GP booking and consultations for people from seldom listened to communities and the impact of digital on the patient experiences of accessing primary care. The value of bringing people into cross organisational communities of practice can never be underestimated nor can the value of bringing the all the user’s experiences of a service together.

I stepped onto the other side of the researcher desk and took part in a session about study ethics as part of my role as patient participant rep for the Cangene Canvar research programme. It is a really interesting challenge to take off your researcher hat and into the role of patient and research participant, particularly when the research topic is something you are also passionate about.

I did some focussed work on the UCD team objectives for the year, conducted performance and development reviews with all my direct reports and had my own review with my line manager.

I received a certificate of outstanding service from the NHS Digital Gold Team for outstanding work over the last year .

What made me think

How one person’s research findings dissemination can be another’s trigger for shame. This can manifest in a number of ways. What made me think was when I observed someone sharing findings to an audience including health care professionals. I heard one professional talk about the shame they felt from hearing this finding and saw how this shame was exacerbated by them feeling powerless to do anything about it due to a toxic mix of budget, time and KPI constraints. Everyone is trying to do their best job and sometimes we have to be mindful as researchers about how our findings land.

Some of my plans for next week

  • Conclude some of the recruitment processes and take part in some more.
  • Work on the breakfast broadcast content
  • Host the covid UCD community meet up — looking forward to Laura talking to us about user research on ‘book a vaccination.’
  • Monthly NHS Digital pipeline assurance review meeting
  • Publishing weeknotes not month notes!

Head of User Research @NHS Digital. Views my own.