People are being asked to complete an online survey to help identify the top ten global burns research priorities and improve burns care around the world. The survey is part of an international partnership set up to give a louder voice to burns patients, carers and clinicians.
The Priorities in Global Burns Research Partnership is a collaboration between the University of Bristol and James Lind Alliance, and funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR). The partnership is run by a Steering Group made up of clinicians, representatives from different international organisations involved in burns care and research, including patients and members of the public.
Burn injuries affect 11 million people worldwide and 140,000 patients in England each year, with around 70% of burns in lower income countries such as in Africa and South-East Asia.
Many patients with burns have difficulties which affect their daily lives in lots of different ways, such as walking, dressing, mental health and the challenges of living with scars. Despite the importance of these issues, there is limited research evidence available to inform healthcare professionals how to make treatment decisions. This limits progress, results in care that varies between hospitals, and means patients may not get the best results.
This project was part of the late Professor Amber Young’s NIHR Advanced Fellowship. Professor Young, Senior Lecturer at the Bristol Centre for Surgical Research, and NIHR Bristol Biomedical Research Centre (NIHR Bristol BRC) and Consultant Paediatric Anaesthetist at University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust (UHBW), was dedicated to improving burns care for patients all over the world. Amber very sadly passed away in September 2022, after living with Stage 4 cancer for a number of years.
Jane Blazeby, Amber’s friend, colleague and Professor of Surgery at Bristol Medical School: Population Health Sciences (PHS), who will help continue the project, said:
“Amber saw this project to find the top ten most important unanswered questions in global burns care as her legacy. In Amber’s memory, the team is determined to complete her work to improve burns care for patients and survivors all over the world.”
In the first stage of the project, over 1,600 people from 79 countries completed the initial online survey. These responses have been analysed to produce a list of unanswered questions to improve global burns care.
The second survey will ask burns survivors, their families and carers, and health care professionals to pick ten questions from this list which are most important to them. A final workshop of survivors, carers and health care professionals will meet early next year to select the final top ten from the 18 questions selected by the majority of people who completed the survey.
These top ten research questions will be used as information for research funders and researchers so that studies can focus on the issues that are most important to patients and clinicians. This will enable the project to find answers to the most important research questions in burn care across the world so people can make the best decisions about care based on evidence.
The second survey should take less than ten minutes to complete and is available in seven languages – English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese and Vietnamese.
To complete the online survey go to: www.burnsresearch.bristol.ac.uk/survey1/
For more information about the project, visit: www.burnsresearch.bristol.ac.uk/