Unit 22-researh methodology for health and social care
P1-explain the function of research in health and social care
Functions of research:
One function of research is identifying needs. Health and social care workers use research principles to identify the needs of individuals. For example, a doctor takes a medical history of a patient in an initial consultation and may and may take measurements such as pulse rate or blood pressure and require blood samples to be analysed. There are many organisations, often charities which are dedicated to improving the care of individuals with specific diseases and disorders through research. Their research may focus on better diagnosis so that needs can be identified earlier or specifically. E.g. through screening or by researching the psychological aspects of the disease so that treatment can be more carefully targeted to interact with the body’s systems and tissues to slow the progress of the disease or to cure it. E.g.2.5 million people in the UK have type 2 diabetes and Diabetes UK spent over £6 million on research in 2009. Health professionals, commercial companies and others who work in the NHS frequently contribute to this type of research.
Another function of research is highlighting gaps in provision. Health and social care needs of communities change over time with the rise and fall of local employment; young families moving in and growing up; and young adults moving on, leaving older adults in the family home. Government and local authorities continually gather data at local and national levels to monitor whether health and social care services are adequate to meet the needs of the local population. In the UK, the proportion of older people in the population is increasing steadily as people live longer and much attention is given to how best to provide services to meet their needs effectively and efficiently. Support for adolescent mental health needs, the predicted swine flu epidemic and maternity...