What is research?
Research is essentially finding out new knowledge. It is a way of gathering new information about a topic or adding to existing knowledge. Research can also be used to challenge previously gathered information.
Why do research?
Health research is fundamentally important as it enables people (staff, patients, public) to generate knowledge and make informed decisions about health services, systems and care. For example, is one treatment more beneficial to patients than others, is it cost effective? Are systems and services running effectively? Could they be improved? How could they be improved? Research can help to answer these questions.
The research cycle
The cycle below shows the many stages in the research process. Patients/the public can be involved in any, some or all of the stages.