Community Pharmacy and Fuse:  a perfect prescription for pharmacists working in public health?

Blogs, research summaries, networking, research opportunities and research meetings; these are some of the ways in which Fuse, the Centre for Translational Research in Public Health can support and promote a role for community pharmacy research in public health.  Fuse is based in the North East of England and aims to deliver world-class public health research, build and sustain research capacity, and develop effective and lasting research partnerships. 

 

So how can Fuse help you? 

 

If you are interested in exploring the synergies between community pharmacy and public health, then joining Fuse’s network of multi-disciplinary researchers across the five North East universities (Durham, Newcastle, Northumbria, Sunderland and Teesside) is a great way to start.  Fuse has six research programmes which link together policy and practice partners and academics to generate new research in health inequalities, knowledge translation, behaviour change, complex systems, healthy ageing and early life and adolescence.  These are a great way to meet community pharmacy colleagues and to forge new collaborations with other practitioners and researchers from different disciplines.

 

Sometimes developing a public health research idea into a feasible research project is difficult.  Who do you turn to for advice?  If your idea has a public health perspective, then Fuse’s responsive research and evaluation service AskFuse could be for you.  AskFuse brokers access to Fuse researchers across the five universities to get the best expertise and value to match your research or evaluation needs.  More information is available on the AskFuse webpages at www.fuse.ac.uk/askfuse.

 

If you are interested in networking with colleagues in public health, then Fuse’s Quarterly Research Meetings (or QRMs) will be really useful.  The most recent QRM with a joint community pharmacy and public health theme was in 2017, and brought practioners and policy makers, academics and commissioners together to explore the role of community pharmacy in public health.  This highly productive event facilitated ongoing dialogue between health practitioners and researchers to inform the design, commissioning and evaluation of community-based public health interventions in North East England. 

 

If you want to develop your research skills, then Fuse also supports a range of funded opportunities at PhD level, in a range of public health interventions.  Although Fuse is not a funding body for research, sometimes there are opportunities for PhD and other research roles as part of projects where Fuse has managed to gain funding.  Fuse is a founding member of the national NIHR School for Public Health Research, collaborating with seven other leading centres of academic public health research excellence across England.  These opportunities are open to anyone with the relevant experience and are publicised via the Fuse website and newsletter. 

 

If there is an aspect of public health research that you want to debate or galvanise opinion on, then you can write for the award winning Fuse Open Science blog (http://fuseopenscienceblog.blogspot.com).  Previous contributors have explored topics such as being a clinical pharmacist in an academic world1, and how community pharmacies could be effective settings for promoting health around risky alcohol consumption2.  Blogging reaches out to audiences beyond the traditional academic network, and can promote the value of community pharmacy professionals to public health policy makers and key decision makers beyond the pharmacy profession.

 

If you are interested in finding out about cutting edge research and how it can be translated into practice, then Fuse briefs are for you.  Fuse research briefs cover a huge range of public health topics which neatly distil current research into accessible and practical research summaries for practitioners.  For example, the Fuse brief “A Perfect Match: Fuse and Community Pharmacies in Public Health?”3 highlights how community pharmacies have a role in contributing to public health.  Dr Adam Todd, who collated the brief, combines both research and practice in his roles as a community pharmacist and Reader in Pharmaceutical Public Health at Newcastle University.

So would you like to join Fuse? 

It takes two minutes to join, and is free at www.fuse.ac.uk/joinfuse  You will receive emails regarding all the Fuse events, and can sign up to our research programmes to meet colleagues in the North East with the same research interests as you.   Joining Fuse’s network of public health colleagues may just turn out to be the perfect prescription to develop your clinical and academic research in community pharmacy.

 

This article was written by Lesley Hayley

References

 

Berry, R (2017) ‘How I overcame my scholionophobia….a clinical pharmacist in an academic world’ Fuse Open Science Blog 10th Jan 2017. Available at: http://fuseopenscienceblog.blogspot.com/2017/03/how-i-overcame-my-scholionophobia.html  (Accessed: 30/01/2019)
 

Mooney, J (2017) ‘A prescription for tackling riskier drinking?’ Fuse Open Science Blog, 13th January 2017. Available at: http://fuseopenscienceblog.blogspot.com/2017/01/a-prescription-for-tackling-riskier.html (Accessed: 30/01/2019)
 

Todd, A (2017) ‘Community Pharmacy and Public Health – the perfect match?’ Available at http://www.fuse.ac.uk/research/briefs/Community%20pharmacy%20and%20public%20health%20-%20the%20perfect%20match.pdf  (Accessed:  13/02/2019)

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