Managing Chronic Illness Research Centre
Conducting rigorous research into holistic care, responsive to the needs of those living with a chronic condition.
Our new research centre aims to conduct rigorous research into holistic care, responsive to the needs of those living with a chronic condition.
The main focus of our research interests and practice development is supporting self-management of long-term conditions as a key component of high quality patient care. Chronic conditions, sometimes referred to as long-term conditions, are a major global health care problem. Such conditions are responsible for a significant burden of ill health among patients, their families and society overall. A sound evidence base is vital to guide care from diagnosis through to end of life. Condition management is a broad topic.
Compared to the investment in the broad topic of condition management that includes for example the provision and resources of the health services, use of medications and devices, relatively little research is undertaken in the area of self-management. Good self-management skills enable the optimal use of drugs, devices and screening programmes and also foster knowledge, self-esteem, empowerment and confidence. However, many factors impinge on condition self-management including: individual patient attributes, families, social and physical environments, patient/clinician relationships and clinical expertise. Complex interactions involving health care systems, clinical interventions, patients' efforts and abilities all play a part when striving to achieve optimal self-management. Furthermore, the trajectory of chronic conditions fluctuates as individuals move from diagnosis through acute and stable phases that may eventually lead to palliative or end of life care.
Ulster University Project funded by Marie Curie exploring the role of Health Care Assistants within out-of-hours community based palliative care in the UK.