Well don’t worry because help is at hand. Some colleagues who have boldly gone before you have kindly shared the wisdom of what they learnt.

As the PPI Co-ordinator for the CLAHRC I am guilty of telling you how to do it but never having to do it myself! So, I asked some researchers to share how they have done PPI, including what worked and what they would do differently in future.

You are all aware that you “should” be doing PPI but often there is a feeling that it is an extra burden on an already busy work programme. Some of these case studies could help you understand that it could actually be helpful to you, rather than just another task to get through.

These case studies are all examples of doing PPI well, but they are also insights to encourage you to think how you might do PPI differently. There are more examples of this at our Inventive Involvement section of the website.

So, for example, James describes how he went out to get his PPI input, rather than expecting people to come to him. By going to them he learnt something that meant he changed his protocol in a way which helped improve his chances of recruiting participants and was something he would definitely not have thought of himself.

Louise wrote a blog post and got some interesting feedback that way. It was a particularly useful method as it was free and she had not got funding for her project at that point.

Phil runs a PPI group that meets regularly and outlines some of the things to think about if you are considering this for a longer-term project or if your research group is considering this for the team as a whole.

Susan tells us more about how she did some PPI with under 25 year olds and what was different about it.

Even if you are running an ordinary PPI advisory group, Pip’s case study might inspire you to think how you could make yours more fun!

You will find that it is so good to hear some real stories from our colleagues about what worked and what did not, what they learnt, what difference the PPI made and what they would do differently with hindsight.

Don’t forget we also have a helpful checklist which can help you make our PPI strategy real in your research.

If you have a story to share about your experiences of doing PPI in the real world of research I would love to hear from you – ppi@phc.ox.ac.uk

Blog main Image: Adapted from original design by Freepik.com

Opinions expressed are those of the authors and not of the NIHR CLAHRC Oxford, the NIHR, the NHS or the Department of Health.

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