Examining the Nutritional, Environmental Trade-Offs Among Diets
RAND Europe, as part of a consortium with the University of Reading and ADAS, was commissioned by Dairyco and the Dairy Council to examine the trade-offs between the nutritional and environmental impacts of dairy diets. The aim is to compare the impacts of the dairy diet with various ideal type diets such as plant-based and Eatwell Plate diets.
While some who are opioid dependent are in treatment, others are not. Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals have commissioned RAND Europe to develop a framework for estimating the cost of untreated opioid dependence. This framework should enable a robust and comprehensive approach to mapping and quantifying the range of costs — economic and social, tangible and intangible.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) accounts for one death every 20 minutes in England and Wales. RAND Europe and the University of Cambridge are conducting a study on "Living with Breathlessness" to improve the end-of-life care strategy for patients with advanced COPD: one which is based on a recognition of the slow relentless progression of non-malignant disease, its effect on patients and care-givers, and their stated care preferences.
When treating patients for Hepatitis-C, physicians may be influenced by many factors: their prior experience, the health and social care systems more broadly, or clinical, social and behavioural, or demographic factors. To better understand this decision-making process, GlaxoSmithKline commissioned RAND Europe to investigate the comparative influence and importance of specific factors and combinations of factors and their trade-offs.
Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) commissioned RAND Europe to undertake a stated preference survey to investigate how changes in alcohol pricing and the presence of multi-buy promotions affect purchasing behaviour.
Because cancer patients often receive poorly organised and fragmented care, University College Hospital Trust and Macmillan Cancer Support have established a new cancer centre. RAND Europe and the University of Cambridge Health Services Research Group are evaluating the centre's improvements in the cancer care pathway, using patient experience measurement alongside other methods, and developing a sustainable quality improvement environment across the partnership.
RAND Europe is one of five partners in the Policy Innovation Research Unit (PIRU), which brings together leading health and social care expertise to improve evidence-based policy-making and its implementation across the National Health Service, social care and public health. The Department of Health has funded PIRU with the goal of strengthening early policy development by exploiting the best routine data and by subjecting initiatives to speedy, thorough evaluation.
Considerable achievements have been made in improving women's and children's health in low- and middle- income countries, but much remains to be done. RAND Europe is developing a protocol to support rapid and systematic identification of data and decision-requirements for the implementation of reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health interventions, and testing and applying the protocol in four countries in South East Asia.
Many complex issues surround the use of antiretroviral (ARV) therapy as HIV prevention, and seen in the recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration decision to consider an ARV drug not just for HIV treatment but also to prevent HIV/AIDS. RAND Europe is partnering with several organisations on Mapping Pathways, a project exploring potential treatment regimes and conducting research, community engagement, and policy work in the U.S., India, and South Africa.
The performance of health systems is a key determinant of the inclusiveness of economic growth. Exclusionary, poor quality health care worsens impoverishment, while inclusive health care redistributes the benefits of growth toward the poor and ill. With Kenya and Tanzania as case studies, RAND Europe is exploring the extent to which unexploited potential synergies between industrial development and health systems can strengthen and contribute to faster and more inclusive growth.
At a time of reduced public spending there is interest in funding public services on a 'payment by results' basis under which the government pays for services only if and when they achieve defined outcomes. The Department of Health has commissioned a consortium that includes RAND Europe to conduct an independent evaluation of eight drug and alcohol recovery payment by results pilots. The research is assessing whether and how the new funding approach encourages the development of more effective recovery programmes.
To help it develop a better drug policy, the UK Drug Policy Commission asked RAND Europe to conduct a modified Delphi exercise with an international panel of drug policy experts. The Delphi method uses ranking, scoring and feedback to arrive at a consensus on a set of issues. This project will consider the actors, principles, processes and structures that may facilitate effective drug policy.
Examining Health and Safety in the European Workplace
RAND Europe is currently undertaking an analysis of the European Enterprise Survey (ESENER) on health and safety in the European workplace, for the European Health and Safety Agency (EU-OSHA). This work aims to understand the factors associated with the effective management of general occupational health and safety, as well as the specific management of psychosocial risks in enterprises.
Can Survey Data Help to Improve Patient Experience in Primary Care?
To understand how patient experience surveys can be used to improve care, a five-year programme will investigate the extent to which practice-based results mask individual variation between doctors, and how practices respond to scores which show a need for improvement. The research, which builds on ongoing work to validate the English GP Patient Survey, will include studies to help understand low scores among ethnic minorities and focus on continuity of care and doctor-patient communication.
The Department of Health surveys 5 million patients annually through its GP Patient Surveys. RAND Europe and CCHSR are examining the validity and reliability of the survey, analysing experiences of different population groups, and exploring the need for case mix adjustment. The team is also investigating the responses of patients and practices to the survey and identifying how the survey addresses relevant experiences of young people and offenders in the prison/probation service.
Some policy interventions are better able to change individual behaviour than others. RAND Europe, as part of the University of Cambridge Behaviour and Health Research Unit, is exploring whether contextual factors and the nature of evidence influence a policy’s acceptability and success. A Rapid Evidence Assessment by RAND focuses on four key behaviours relevant for current policy challenges: smoking, diet, physical activity and alcohol consumption.
Assessing the Evidence Base for Pharmaceutical R&D Models
As research-based drug development is widely viewed as crucial to improving patient health, the pharmaceuticals sector is heavily reliant — and spends a great deal — on research and development. However, there is considerable debate about different R&D models: for example, is it more successful when conducted in a closed, in-house environment or through open networks and partnerships? To help answer this question, Pfizer has asked RAND Europe to investigate the evidence base.
Because malaria causes significant health problems and can also impair economic and social development in some parts of the world, large-scale prevention programmes have the potential to contribute considerably to sustainable economic development. RAND Europe is working to enhance computable models that take into account the many interactions throughout an economy, to include health benefits impacts and understand how economies may respond to different malaria control strategies.
Recognising that robust information on health systems in other countries can provide valuable lessons for the British National Health Service, the Department of Health has commissioned a team of researchers at RAND Europe and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine to create the "On-Call Facility" for International Healthcare Comparisons.