Current research priorities for UK occupational physicians and occupational health researchers: a modified Delphi study

Lalloo, D., Demou, E. , Smedley, J., Madan, I., Asanati, K. and Macdonald, E. B. (2018) Current research priorities for UK occupational physicians and occupational health researchers: a modified Delphi study. Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 75(11), pp. 830-836. (doi:10.1136/oemed-2018-105114) (PMID:30121583)

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Abstract

Objectives: Studies identifying national occupational health (OH) research priorities have been conducted in several countries to establish where OH research should be focused and where funding should be targeted. However, the UK findings are now over 20 years old, and OH practice is continuously evolving. The aim of this study was to identify current research priorities for UK occupational physicians (OPs) and occupational health researchers (OHRs). Methods: Current research priorities in OH were identified using a modified Delphi technique. This was conducted in two rounds to achieve consensus. Research priorities were rated, and then ranked using questionnaires developed from expert panel discussions, key research topics identified from the medical literature and participant feedback. Overall and intergroup comparisons were completed for the ranking scores. Results Consensus among OPs and OHRs was high with almost all (9/10) primary domains rated as ‘very important’ or ‘absolutely necessary’ by more than 54% of respondents. The research priority areas ranked highest were jointly economic evaluation/cost effectiveness studies and disability management followed by occupational disease/injury/illness. Occupational health policy was ranked lowest after sickness absence management and health promotion. The secondary domain analysis identified priority emphasis on mental health and psychosocial hazards within the workplace and the need to further develop evidence-based guidance for clinical OH practice. Conclusions: We identified the current research priorities for UK OPs and OHRs. The findings will inform future national OH research strategy and support research that addresses important knowledge gaps within OH and other interdisciplinary specialties.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:MacDonald, Professor Ewan and Asanati, Dr Kaveh and Demou, Dr Evangelia and Lalloo, Dr Drushca
Authors: Lalloo, D., Demou, E., Smedley, J., Madan, I., Asanati, K., and Macdonald, E. B.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO Unit
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Public Health
Journal Name:Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Publisher:BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN:1351-0711
ISSN (Online):1470-7926
Published Online:18 August 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 The Authors
First Published:First published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine 75: 830-836
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
620221MRC SPHSU/GU Transfer FellowshipsLaurence MooreMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_PC_13027IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU