Research to Inform Policy Responses to COVID-19 in the Health and Social Care Systems

Research to Inform Policy Responses to COVID-19 in the Health and Social Care Systems

The National Institute for Health Research’s (NIHR) Policy Research Programme (PRP) Recovery, Renewal, Reset: Research to Inform Policy Responses to COVID-19 in the Health and Social Care Systems initiative invites applications for research to inform the policy response to challenges posed by COVID-19 and to capture learning arising from the pandemic. The aim is to inform medium to longer term policy decisions for health and social care resulting from COVID-19 through research projects in specific topic areas.

The proposal must address a national policy question, inform recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic or help to learn from responses to the pandemic to inform recovery. Proposals are expected to be multidisciplinary and use a range of methodologies. Proposals should consider how to address inequalities, potentially exacerbated by the pandemic, particularly for deprived communities and minority groups. Research may use international evidence where this can inform domestic policy.

The eligible research topics are:

The challenge of COVID-19 and associated mortality and morbidity – focused on policy solutions.

Consequences of COVID-19 for health and care services for other conditions: related harms; evidence to support resumption of services; and positive and negative lessons from innovations introduced through the crisis, including for integration of health and care.

Social care including domestic and residential settings.

Groups in society.

Proposals on other topics may be considered if it can be clearly demonstrated that a national policy question related to recovery and learning from COVID-19 will be informed by the research.

Expected outputs might include (but are not limited to): policy briefing papers and (virtual) presentations on topics of current high interest; dissemination events tailored for the policy audience; networking with other research teams working on aligned topics within this initiative; updates on new lines of enquiry for the research community, and for policy audiences; and timely publication of peer-reviewed journal articles.

The scheme is open to institutions in England. Applications will be considered from other UK countries (Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) provided they address the priority areas in a way that is relevant to the needs of the Department of Health and Social Care (England) and meet all other selection criteria.

Between £50,000 and £500,000 is available per project. Grants are expected to start within four weeks of award notification.

NIHR is particularly seeking projects that will complete or produce early outputs in 2020, in time to inform policy and funding decisions related to recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. For projects to inform policy decisions in the short and immediate term, they should be 3-6 months in duration. Projects seeking to evidence medium to longer term decisions should be around 18 months in duration and no longer than 24 months.

The application form is now available and there are three proposal deadlines: 16 July 2020, 10 September 2020 and 22 October 2020.

​More information about this research funding opportunity and the application process is available on the RESEARCHconnect funding information platform. RESEARCHconnect provides up-to-the minute content, insight and analysis on research funding news and policy. To find out more about how RESEARCHconnect can keep you in the know, and subscription fees, contact us today.