Exciting times for PenCHORD

PenCHORD (Peninsula Collaboration for Health Operational Research and Development) is both a workstream within the ESMI research group and a part of the Peninsula CLAHRC.  The PenCHORD team use advanced quantitative techniques to model healthcare services and operations to help healthcare professionals, commissioners and patients make informed decisions about change in the NHS.

Over the last couple of months, PenCHORD has been engaging in a lot of exciting activity.

1) PenCHORD have been awarded a grant of £336,000 to extend their successful regional neonatal model to analyse the national capacity and demand for neonatal care in England.  The project, Neonet (funded by the NIHR Health Services and Delivery Research Programme), will analyse the trade-off between unit throughput and parent travel distance from reconfiguration of services, and analyse the impact on the costs per infant. 

2) PenCHORD showcased their work to potential collaborators based in Cornwall.  Attendees learnt more about the type of projects that PenCHORD can offer and how the projects can directly help their organisation.  PenCHORD also ran their highly successful training programme (“Modelling in Health and Social Care”) that is free-of-charge to those working in and around the NHS in the South West and which shows people how to develop simple but effective models in Excel.  Future dates for this training programme will be offered in March 2016.

3) PenCHORD have extended the range of their training programme to include the new training day “Problem Structuring Methods”.  The pilot module, which was ran in November 2015, was incredibly well received and future dates for this training day will be offered on 28 January 2016 and 02 February 2016.

4) PenCHORD has recently delivered its 12th Seminar, Showcase and Workshop event to illustrate the ways in which Operational Research can help to inform decision making in the NHS.  The next SSW event is to be held on 04 February 2016. 

5) Board members of trusts have responded very enthusiastically to the launch of the Health Service Modelling Associates programme set up by PenCHORD.  This programme is open to current NHS trust employees who will be released for one day a week to work on a modelling project of particular relevance to their trust with the support of a PenCHORD mentor.

6) PenCHORD are in high demand for their geographical modelling work.  Their analysis on organisation of stroke and heart attack services in the South West was presented to over 100 clinicians and commissioners.  Also PenCHORD have been commissioned to help the Welsh NHS to evaluate number and locations of acute stroke services in Wales.  Mike Allen and Kerry Pearn are continuing to take this work forward.

7) Researchers at PenCHORD are passionate about their work and enjoy discussing and showcasing their research at international conferences.  Sebastian Rachuba presented the radiographer led discharge project and Martin Pitt presented the visual methods for representing patients pathways work at the ORAHS conference in Montreal, Canada.  The diagnostic pathway for chest pain patients in A&E project was presented by Andy Salmon at the YoungOR 19 conference in Birmingham and by Martin Pitt at the INFORMS HEALTHCARE Conference in Nashville, USA.  Dan Chalk presented the polypharmacy project and Sean Manzi presented the behaviour in waste management systems project at the EURO conference in Glasgow.

8) Exciting news just in.  PenCHORD is very happy to have appointed a new member to their growing team, Emma Villeneuve.  Emma will start in 2016 and PenCHORD look forward to this valuable addition to the team.

Details of all future PenCHORD events can be found on their events page.