Purpose and Scope of the research

The ten studies in the LTNC RI were commissioned to update and extend the available evidence on the nature, quality and outcomes of care for people with long-term neurological conditions in England. They set out to provide a robust evidence-base to inform all those working to improve the quality of services and care.

Within this broad research agenda, the more specific objectives of the LTNC RI were to:

The research studies focus on working-age adults and their carers, including at significant life-stage transition points. They are of two broad types. Some set out to span the field, providing a generic overview of the shape (nature/ delivery/coverage/cost) of current services, (Bernard et al, 2010; Playford, 2011; Hoppitt et al, 2011) and the experiences and needs of those using them, and their carers (Fitzpatrick et al 2010; Jackson et al., 2011a) at a particular point in time.

Others focus on selected aspects of the field in greater depth, casting stronger light on particular issues and experiences. These include:

The two types of studies provide us with different, but complementary, perspectives.

The ‘overview studies’ map out the broad features of service provision and use identifying common features or tendencies. Involving large, representative samples, their findings are likely to be generalisable across the field.

The 'spotlight studies’, in contrast, aim to increase our understanding of the particular experience of specific conditions or aspects of service provision, using smaller samples, in--depth case studies and naturalistic research methods.

Together, the LTNC RI studies provide a 'snapshot' of the nature and impact of existing services some five years on from the launch of the NSF for Long-term Neurological Conditions, so providing a comprehensive baseline against which to assess future progress.

Final reports from each study are available to download from our web-site, where links are provided to the research teams’ own academic web-sites.


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