Public health


Our research conducted within the College of Health, Psychology and Social Care around the issue of public health is leading to changes in the way services are managed and delivered. Our research areas include:


Therapy non-attendance

Non-attendance at Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT). This evaluation study explores the factors leading to non-attendance at IAPT services to see whether there are particular people that could be targeted in the referral/treatment process to increase the likelihood of completing treatment.

The study specifically investigates the reasons why non-attenders choose not to engage with IAPT services following referral. The project is funded by Derbyshire County Council and is being delivered by Dr Reza Safari and Dr Michael Townend.

Diabetes service

Erewash Diabetes Integrated Service Evaluation. The aim of this evaluation study is to gain an understanding of the perceived successes and limitations of the existing integrated service to enable learning from this to be captured. A case study methodology is being adopted.

The outcome element of the evaluation will focus on examining data (where available) relating to reductions in myocardial infarctions, strokes/transient ischemic attacks (TIAs) and microvascular and peripheral vascular disease – particularly amputations. Measures of increased patient empowerment will be devised in collaboration with the clinical commissioning group (CCG), service providers and the health coaching experts and data will be collected as part of the health coaching programme. The project is funded by the Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and being delivered by Professor Annmarie Ruston.

Osteoarthritis self-management

Digital intervention to promote self-management in people with osteoarthritis – Systematic review and meta-analysis. The aim of the research is evaluation of available randomised controlled trials of digital self-management programmes for people with osteoarthritis.

The effects of self-management programmes on patient outcomes such as pain, disability, function and quality of life will be analysed in meta-analysis. The health service outcomes and cost-effectiveness data will also be extracted if reported in the papers and will be synthesised narratively. The project is funded by the Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care - East Midlands (CLAHRC-EM) and is being delivered by Dr Reza Safari and Jessica Jackson

Geriatric assessment

Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment (CGA) in Primary Care: A Feasibility RCT (randomised controlled trial). The aim of the project is to explore the feasibility of implementing a tailored CGA for frail older people delivered in patient’s homes by Advanced Clinical Practitioners.

The study will measure staff and patients' perception of the intervention, assess health care resource usage and cost and measure key participants' health-related outcomes such as health-related quality of life, function, mobility and loneliness as well as the cost and resource use. The project is funded by Derbyshire CCGs and being delivered by Dr Reza Safari, Jessica Jackson, and Louise Boole.

Care home provision

Care home provision and the NHS. The study explored the issue of how to effectively harness the contribution of care/nursing homes to the health-care system and to reduce the perceived demands made by homes on primary care services. The study addressed ways in which care/nursing homes could be supported to be more effective providers of care within the overall health system. It focused on North Derbyshire’s Care Home Alignment Scheme. Derbyshire CCGs funded the project and it was delivered by Dr Annmarie Ruston and Dr Amelia Woodward.

NHS community audit

Accessing appropriate NHS services– a community audit. The aim of this study was to examine factors that influenced the decisions made by local people when choosing which service to access for their symptoms and to identify why people may choose A&E (accident and emergency) rather than other service options.

It focused on two geographical areas of Erewash – Long Eaton and Ilkeston. Respondents identified a range of issues that they faced in accessing and using urgent care services and provided reasons for their choices. Derbyshire CCGs funded the project and it was delivered by Dr Annmarie Ruston and Dr Amelia Woodward.

Managing medicines

The Role and Value of Medicines Management. The two-part evaluation project explored:

  1. The use of the ‘work log’ SharePoint data-set used by medicines management pharmacists for the recording of interventions. Recommendations were made around the simplification of the recordings of interventions and other changes to improve the consistency of the data collected
  2. Clinical pharmacists in patient-facing roles within the ‘Belper Five’ group of GP practices

The project was commissioned by Southern Derbyshire CCG medicines management team and Dr Dave Giles led and Rachel Lewis worked on this project.

Nutritional supplements

Oral Nutritional Supplements in Care Homes and the Community. An evaluation commissioned by Southern Derbyshire CCG and Derby Hospitals Community Dietetic Team, exploring the effectiveness of a programme of nutritional review and staff education in care homes and the community. The project was delivered by Dr Dave Giles and Rachel Lewis.

Fatigue interventions

Fatigue interventions in long term, physical health conditions. This study was a scoping review of systematic reviews to map the fatigue intervention literature, to ascertain if certain interventions may be effective across conditions, and if novel interventions tested in specific long-term conditions may be promising for other conditions. This was a collaborative project between the University of Derby, Kings College London and Queen Margaret University. Dr Reza Safari worked on this project.

Prosthetic alignment

New anatomically based prosthetic alignment method for below-knee prosthesis. The objectives of this study was to develop and evaluate a new anatomically based prosthetic alignment method based on the relationships between anatomical landmark-based angles and distances of lower limbs in unilateral transtibial amputees. This project was a collaborative project between the University of Derby and the University of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation Sciences which resulted in IP generation. Dr Reza Safari worked on this project.

Our team

Public Health is researched by: