Aug 03

HEEKSS/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme – Bridging Scheme 2020-21

Health Education England Kent, Surrey and Sussex (HEEKSS)/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme – Bridging Scheme 2020-21

CHSS will continue as a provider for the Health Education England Kent Surrey Sussex (HEEKSS)/National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Integrated Clinical Academic Programme (ICAP) Bridging Scheme 2020-2021.

Funding has been awarded to the Centre to enable up to two successful pre or post-doctoral awardees to receive a bespoke learning and research development programme. HEEKSS will award funding to support backfill cost, academic supervision, and reasonable expenses.

Available to Nurses, Midwives, and Non-Medical Applied Health Professionals, the ICAP Bridging schemes are a way of providing support to clinical academics to build on their previous academic training and develop proposals for a pre or post-doctoral award, and take the next step on their clinical academic pathway.

Aims of the Bridging Scheme are to:

  • Enable awardees to develop skills in higher-level reflection in relation to research based upon their discipline.
  • Provide academic supervision and facilitate clinical mentorship to awardees to undertake research that builds upon a culture of critical evaluation and enquiry in relation to their services setting.
  • Develop opportunity for self-directed research and reflection.
  • Immerse pre-doctoral awardees into a research environment and enable them to develop an independent piece of research in preparation for a PhD application
  • Consolidate post-doctoral awardees academic training and development whilst supporting them in balancing their clinical service, and assisting them with developing an application for the Clinical Lectureship or Senior Clinical Lectureship

More information:
To discuss the programme email Dr. Julie MacInnes:

Closing date for applications: 

Email Application forms and supporting documents to Programme Lead Dr. Julie MacInnes by 5pm, Friday 21 August 2020

UoK_Application form ICAP Pre-Doc Bridging Programme 2020
UoK_Application form ICAP Post-Doc Bridging Programme 2020

More info on ICAP programme pathway on  Health Education England website
More info on ICAP Bridging Programme on Health Education England website

Jul 31

CHSS welcomes applications for (HEEKSS)/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme 2020/21

Health Education England Kent, Surrey and Sussex (HEEKSS)/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme Internships 2020-2021

CHSS will continue as a provider for the Health Education England Kent Surrey Sussex (HEEKSS)/National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Integrated Clinical Academic Programme (ICAP) 2020-21

Funding has been awarded to the Centre to enable up to eleven successful interns to receive a bespoke learning and development programme. HEEKSS will award funding to support backfill cost, tuition fees and reasonable expenses. 

Available to Nurses, Midwives, and Non-Medical Applied Health Professionals, the ICAP is intended to develop practitioners confidence to apply their newly learned skills within their employing Trusts, become research champions and prepare applicants to apply for a NIHR Pre-doctoral Clinical Academic Fellowship, and in the long-term apply for Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowship, Clinical Lectureship or Senior Clinical Lectureship.

The internship scheme will:

  • Develop research and research capabilities throughout all levels of the NHS and Social Care in order to enhance and diffuse evidence based practice
  • Provide the opportunity to develop a network of clinical academics so that learning, best practice and innovation can be shared and disseminated
  • Support the development of clinical skills as well as research skills
  • Encourage research into areas related to HEE’s Mandate or to education and training as a whole
  • Offer an insight into a career in clinical academia and provide experience which would support applications for further formal research training.

More information:
To discuss the programme and request the University of Kent Application Form 2020-21
email Dr Julie MacInnes:

Closing date for applications:
apply online and upload all supporting documentation to University of Kent by:
5pm, Friday 21st  August 2020

Guidance for applicants: UoK FAQ ICAP 2020-21

UoK Application form ICAP 2020021


More information on the ICA programme on Health Education England website:

More information on internships on Health Education England website:

Jul 20

COVID-19 and Social Care – CHSS expert comments

CHSS Research Associate Dr Rasa Mikelyte has recently featured on KMTV commenting on Coronavirus and UK Social Care.

COVID-19: Why have UK care home residents been so badly affected?  29/6/20

Rasa talks about the ‘devastating but not surprising’ statistics around Coronavirus in UK care homes. She gives her views on why they compare so badly to other European countries, and what might have been done differently to avoid such a high death toll.

Watch the KMTV video 

Inadequate Government support ‘from the start’ for UK Care Homes:  7/7/20

Rasa asserts that inadequate support from Government and espeically a policy of Care Homes having to take in COVID positive patients from hospital, led to the dire situation witnessed in social care.

Watch the KMTV video



Jun 30

CHSS Newsletter Summer 2020

The Summer 2020 CHSS Newsletter is out now. This issue, written over the lockdown period, features latest CHSS research and news, including a look at the many varied media stories that the Centre team have been involved in shaping. Senior Clinical Research Fellow Lindsay Forbes who has been a frequent expert commentator on Coronavirus; is spotlighted in our regular ‘CHSS People‘ slot on page 6.

New project topics include community volunteering and evaluating virtual consultations for patients accessing NHS mental health interventions. Both are exploring what works best to deliver optimum outcomes.

Our cover is given over to COVID-19, and how CHSS has been adapting to our ‘new normal’.

You can subscribe to future issues by email. Our online archive is also available.

We always welcome feedback, suggestions or comments. Contact


Jun 16

Dr Lindsay Forbes on Kent’s COVID distribution

CHSS Senior Clinical Research Fellow (Public Health) Specialist Dr Lindsay Forbes offers expert comment on why there is a concentration of COVID-19 cases around Ashford, named as one of the country’s virus ‘hotspots’.

in a recent feature in Kent Online, Lindsay offers insight on underlying factors behind the data which may help to explain differences in rates across particular areas of Kent. As of 12 June, there were 858 recorded cases of COVID-19 in the area, with an infection rate of 663.7 per 100,000 people.

Lindsay is researching this very relevant and interesting picture. She said: ‘we’re working with Kent County Council to try to understand this better. The key thing is I don’t think there’s any evidence to support the idea that it’s about hospitals having different testing behaviours. What is more likely to explain it, we think, is something different about the populations of these places, the work they do, how they travel, where they live.

‘Ashford, for example, has more people in key worker occupations, who have had to carry on going out to work, than Tunbridge Wells. It is much easier to keep your distance from others if you are working at home or are furloughed. Or it may be that a higher proportion of the population commutes to London. The good news for Ashford is that it does not have strikingly high death rates. In Kent, Dartford has been hit worst in terms of deaths, which may be to do with population density. Also more people in Dartford belong to Black and Asian ethnic groups, who are at higher risk of dying of COVID-19 than White people.’

Read the full article 

May 22

Welcome Dr Natalia Gusak

CHSS welcomes Dr Natalia Gusak to the Centre until August from the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Ukraine, funded by the Global Challenges Doctoral Centre. Natalia is Head of the School of Social Work Department. Her postdoctoral appointment will see her work with Professor Sally Kendall and Dr Olena Nizalova on the collaborative study exploring factors affecting mental health and wellbeing of mothers and infants in Ukraine, and evaluating the potential of Primary Health Care to play a role in its improvement.

The project will produce evidence on mental health among pregnant women and mothers in the 1001 days from conception to two years – a critical time in child brain development and physical, social and emotional well-being. Evidence shows that adverse childhood experiences like deprivation, neglect, substance misuse, maternal mental health problems and abuse – can negatively affect this period.

The project focuses on three main areas; antenatal care, pre- and post-partum maternal mental health, and breastfeeding. Some data exists on antenatal care and breastfeeding in Ukraine, but the maternal mental health picture is less clear. However, indirect evidence suggests a dire situation with a combination of existing factors which are likely to lead to high burden of maternal mental health problems.

The scoping study will explore existing mental health service provision for mothers: awareness, experience, use and satisfaction with quality, and test online research instruments around maternal mental health in the Ukraine setting.

The team will use the data to develop a Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) research agenda on maternal and infant health in post-Soviet countries, and to prepare for a wider future study.


Apr 27

CHSS Health and Social Care PhD Opportunities

These five 3-year full-time (5 years part-time) PhD scholarships are supported by the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration Kent, Surrey and Sussex. ARC KSS aims to develop applied health and social care research across the region for the benefit of patients and the public.

We are keen to invite applications from potential PhD applicants to undertake health and social care research, with interests in any of the ARC KSS research themes, commencing in October 2020:

  • Social care: person-centred, community based social care
  • Starting Well: Early detection and Intervention of Mental Health Problems in Children and Young People
  • Primary and Community Health Services: Sustainable and integrated care focusing on people with chronic conditions and marginalised groups
  • Dementia: Living Well with Dementia
  • Co-production: Involving and working with patients and the public to produce relevant research
  • Public Health: Improving health and reducing need among older patients with multiple conditions and younger people at time of transition
  • Digital Innovation: Harnessing digital technology to help create a sustainable health and social care system
  • Health and Social Care Economics: using best practice to efficiently fund health and social care services of benefit to patients.

Funding Notes

The studentship will cover tuition fees at the standard postgraduate home/EU rate (£4,407 per year) plus an annual maintenance stipend per annum £15,285 (2020-2021 rate). In addition, there is an annual Research Training Support allowance of £750 to cover conference attendance, training courses, equipment and books.

Closing date: 5 June 2020

Further information on the SSPSSR website and FindaPhD.


COVID-19: CHSS in the media

As UK Coronavirus cases have increased over the past week, CHSS Senior Clinical Research Fellow (Public Health) Specialist Dr Lindsay Forbes has given numerous tv and radio interviews.

On 12 March she talked to Fred Dinenage on ITV Meridian news on likely impacts for those of us who rely on the NHS.

She also appeared on BBC south east news and

BBC Radio Kent ‘wake up call’ [01h:14 – 1h:18]

Read Lindsay’s expert comments on the Coronavirus here

Find out more about her CHSS research on our staff webpages:





Mar 09

Coronavirus and our health and social care system

How could COVIDー19 impact the UK health and social care system? 


As confirmed cases of COVID-19 continue rising in the UK, CHSS Senior Clinical Research Fellow (Public Health) Dr Lindsay Forbes has commented on the likely impacts on the UK health and social care system.

Lindsay said: ‘The key issues with COVID-19 seem to be that it is highly infectious – more so than seasonal flu – and we have limited natural immunity with no vaccine yet. Many people could get it – if so, there may be major disruption to our health and social care system, which is already bogged down with the usual winter problems: high levels of emergency medical admissions and seasonal flu. Many health and social care workers will get COVID-19 too and will have to isolate themselves.

‘In the UK we have extensive plans for dealing with major outbreaks of infectious disease. These were found to be robust during the swine flu epidemic, which caused about 26,000 additional hospital admissions. The country is covered by a network of Local Health Resilience Partnerships – collaborations of local government and health organisations that set out emergency preparedness plans. Yet, the health and social care system is in a more vulnerable state than in 2009/10, weakened by a long-term funding deficit, difficulties in recruitment and low morale.

We need to be prepared for disruption: delays to non-urgent investigations or operations and longer waiting times for appointments with GPs and hospitals, and maybe effects on urgent care for other conditions. There are a lot of uncertainties – not least about how long the COVID-19 outbreak will last. Seasonal flu fizzles out each year as the weather gets warmer – whether COVID-19 will do the same remains to be seen.’

Lindsay is an academic public health physician with special interests in the epidemiology of long term conditions and the design and evaluation of services to meet the needs of the growing population who have these. Her main focus is currently the organisation of general practice. Dr Forbes joined CHSS in January 2016 from King’s College London and Queen Mary, University of London.


Mar 03

CHSS Newsletter Winter/Spring 2020

The new CHSS newsletter is now available to read or download on our website. We feature the latest CHSS news and events including an update from the wonderful OPEL project which is seeking to find out what works best, for whom and under what circumstances, when receiving Hospice at Home Services. We are also happy to report on great work by 2018/19 CHSS Visiting Darzi Fellows, James and Philippa.

Our cover features the wide media coverage given to our Ugandan research into the practice of men breastfeeding on their partners’ milk. Dr Rowena Merritt enlarges personally on this theme on p5. ‘CHSS People’ features Research Associate Catherine Marchand who shares her experiences and offers a personal perspective on ‘humanising’ research.

You can subscribe to future issues by email. Our online archive is also available.

We always welcome feedback, suggestions or comments. Contact






Older posts «