Here are some of the projects we’ve previously funded, as well as some which are “success stories in progress”. You can search more of our academic and clinical research grant awards and the resulting publications on Europe PubMed Central.
Change is a common and necessary part of care environments - but what sort of culture within care homes leads to them adapting well to change? Dr Al Ross and his team wanted to understand what ‘good care’ looks like, discover which aspects of care homes’ systems and culture support this, and share their findings to improve life for older people in care homes.
Music therapy can enhance people’s lives, and stimulate their minds. Dr Fabia Franco and her team are assessing the impact of music therapy on older people’s cognition through a randomised controlled trial. An important factor in this will be the use of human-like robots in addition to the face-to-face sessions, to see whether this is a viable way to deliver the therapy.
Age-related macular degeneration is one of the biggest causes of sight loss in the UK - yet the only treatment available for the condition involves injections directly into the eye. Many patients are desperate for a less invasive treatment, especially one that doesn’t require hospital visits. Dr Felicity de Cogan and her team have discovered a way to carry drugs across the eye’s protective membranes, moving towards the development of eye drops to treat the disease.
We know that people are living longer, but simply measuring life expectancy doesn’t tell us anything about the quality of life that older people are experiencing. In this research, Professor Carol Jagger and her team are using longitudinal data to assess how much of this increased life expectancy is spent with disability - and whether changes are seen across the population, or are affected by deprivation.
The techniques used to make dentures are labour-intensive, expensive, inaccurate and have remained largely unchanged for decades. Recent advances in technology now make it possible to create 3D printed dentures, so Dr Andrew Keeling is finding out if this is feasible, and whether the results are acceptable to wearers and as good or better than existing dentures.
We know that the spongy cartilage between bones changes during ageing and osteoarthritis, but it’s not clear how these processes are related. By comparing what’s happening in cartilage cells at a molecular level during ageing and osteoarthritis, Dr Simon Tew is gathering insights that will pave the way for future therapies.
Specially-designed exercise programmes have been shown to help prevent older people from falling. However, we do not know how well these exercises benefit people in the longer-term. In her PhD studentship, Dr Susanne Finnegan followed up with people after a trial of a fall-prevention exercise programme to find out if they were still exercising, and what motivated them to keep going.
Many older people use walking aids to get around, but there are questions over their effectiveness. Using technology to measure the stability of walking frame users in different environments, Dr Sibylle Thies was able to understand more about the use of these aids in daily life, and develop new advice for safer usage.
Digital innovations and ‘smart’ homes are often seen as a way to provide more efficient care for older people. However, the evidence on whether these innovations actually work, or do what commissioners need them to, is sparse. This research investigates the landscape of technology available to support older people, who is buying it, and what they want from it.
There is a large amount of healthcare data available in the UK, and new statistical techniques are allowing researchers to analyse differences in dementia care between ethnic groups in detail for the first time. Professor Claudia Cooper used this data to identify inequalities in access to dementia diagnosis and prescription of different drugs in Black, Asian and White groups.
Very little research has been done to understand the health and social care needs of older trans people, particularly those transitioning at an older age. Dr Paul Willis and his team wanted to understand the challenges faced by older trans people accessing health and social care in Wales.
As we get older, our senses change, including our sensitivity to temperature. People living in care homes don’t have control over their environment, and may not be able to determine or communicate if they’re uncomfortably warm or cold. Professor Charmaine Childs used thermal imaging to understand how people’s physical temperatures compared with how they felt, and whether this was affected by dementia.
Organisation: Mid and East Antrim Agewell Partnership (MEAAP)
Older people may need support from a variety of health and social care providers. All these separate organisations can be difficult to navigate, making it hard for people to take control of their own healthcare. The IMPACTAgewell® project brings together a range of different providers to create a holistic model of care. They support older […]
Organisation: University of Worcester, University of Lincoln, University of Exeter, Care home partners
In this innovative community programme, co-funded with the Alzheimer's Society, researchers will work in and with care homes to develop a model for research that is collaborative and effective. Three projects will be identifying new ways of achieving this, sharing information and findings with each other.
Organisation: My Home Life England and The Linking Network
Fostering relationships and links across generations can bring benefits to all. With matched funding from The National Lottery Community Fund #iwill campaign, the Dunhill Medical Trust is supporting projects that are establishing intergenerational links between young people and older people in care homes.
Organisation: Addenbrookes Charitable Trust/Helix Arts/Independent Arts/Paintings in Hospitals/Royal Philharmonic Orchestra/Timebanking UK
The Dunhill Medical Trust funds a wide range of projects within the Community Grants portfolio. This diversity means it is challenging to come up with a universal set of measures to evaluate their impact.