Research Funding

Research Funding

The BRS first introduced grant rounds to enhance multi-professional research in 2001, sponsored initially by industry funding. Since 2010 the BRS formed an alliance with Kidney Care UK which has flourished now into a robust sustainable joint research grant programme – The Kidney Patient Research Partnership.

Over the last 16 years, 66 high quality research grants have been awarded totalling an excess of £1.6 million allocated funds. All BRS/Kidney Care UK grants qualify for NIHR portfolio registration.

Research grant funding has made significant IMPACT on:

  • Patient care
  • Service provision
  • Multi-disciplinary staff development
  • Evidence based practice

Patient care has been enhanced, through improved information resources, education, self-management and care packages, greater understanding of depression, exercise programs and the use of social media. Funded research has influenced the introduction of new services, clinics, screening and treatment regimes.

The value of high level research expertise is being recognised with different members of the multi-disciplinary team (counsellors, dieticians, psychologists and nurses) securing dedicated research time to contribute to programmes of research.

“Now half my time is dedicated to research…the original research grant had a huge impact on me professionally. It has raised the profile and increased encouragement for non-medical led research in our department.” (Renal Counsellor)

“The initial research grant in 2006 led to further grants, gave me a history of grant capture and publications which facilitated my professorial research career” (Nurse)

“Increased the research experience of the research team and brought new collaborators together” (Nurse)

“Every £1 of funding has roughly enabled me to raise around four times as much to sustain a research programme” (Nephrologist)

Examples of key publications:

  • First study to assess the potential for self-affirmation as a behavioural intervention (Wileman et al 2014)
  • Experiences of family members caring for conservatively managed kidney patients (Low et al 2014)
  • First literature review addressing the role of nutritional intervention and the effect of sarcopenia in kidney transplant outcomes (Chan et al 2014)
  • Identifying fathers and mother’s skills in managing long-term medical conditions (Swallow et al 2011)
  • First publication on Seeking normality: Life on the kidney transplant list (Sque et al 2011)
  • Evidence based CKD patient preferences and priorities for information (Ormandy and Hulme 2013)
  • Increased understanding of depressive symptoms and survival in CKD patients (Chilcot et al 2011)

Applications involve research collaboration between disciplines including: nurses, physicians, surgeons, dietitians, social workers, counsellors, psychologists, and clinical scientists. Grants are particularly important as a means of researching best practice and practical solutions for kidney patients. Each year projects are selected from many applications, each one subjected to rigorous process of peer review and feedback.

We are constantly seeking research funding partners if you are interested in supporting BRS research programme Contact BRS Secretariat.


Research Grant Applications

Examples of impact on Patient Care

  • Improved conservative management
  • Improved patient information resources
  • Proactive involvement of fathers in their child’s CKD management
  • Fibre supplements used routinely in place of laxatives
  • Care packages to reduce salt intake
  • Monitor/intervene on serum vitamin D
  • Intradialytic exercise programs
  • Increased Asian organ donors
  • Social media network to share patient experiences
  • Novel behaviour change interventions
  • Increased understanding patient experience
  • Self-management packages
  • Improved understanding of depression

Examples of impact on Service provision

  • Combined Renal Genetic clinic beneficial to families and referring physicians
  • Vitamin D screening routine in all our chronic kidney disease clinics
  • Changed 3 monthly dietetic counselling to monthly bone medication/phosphate dietary advice for all HD patients
  • Body composition monitoring now part of standard care for dialysis patients
  • Review conservative management option at 6-12 months for patients on HD
  • Staff training packages to support intradialytic exercise, for national roll out
  • Importance of Asian community worker to educate and increase organ donation
  • New clinical and laboratory techniques

Examples of impact on MDT staff development

  • Provided a grant history to secure larger funded bids from national funding streams
  • Supported early career researchers to get established, become principal investigators and research leaders
  • Supported MDT staff (nurses, registrars, medical students, physiotherapists, psychologists, counsellors, exercise physiologists, dietitians) collecting data for Masters, MD or PhD level study
  • Enabled international collaborative networks to be established
  • Raised the profile and increased non-medical research
  • Increased research profiles of individuals and teams through publications and national and international presentations
  • BRS start up grant enabled the expansion to a comprehensive programme of research

Examples of impact on Evidence based practice

  • The effect of vitamin D on endothelial function in CKD vitamin D deficiency
  • Use of BCM measurements in children
  • Development of a CKD-specific exercise behaviour change intervention
  • First review of the role of nutritional intervention and the effect of sarcopenia in kidney transplant outcomes
  • First study to address role of body composition and inflammation on causation of fatigue
  • Experiences of family members caring for conservatively managed CKD patients
  • First publication on seeking normality, experiences of life on transplant waiting list
  • First study to assess the potential for self-affirmation as a behavioural intervention
  • Evidence base for NICE guidelines