Scotland’s first national Brain Health & Dementia Research Strategy launches
8th July 2021
Today (8 July 2021) sees the launch of the first Scottish Brain Health and Dementia Research Strategy, prepared by Alzheimer Scotland, The Scottish Dementia Research Consortium and Brain Health Scotland, and endorsed by a broad range of national organisations including NHS Research Scotland
The strategy aims to create an environment in Scotland that promotes the conditions for the highest quality of brain health and dementia research, and the rapid implementation of research into practice – setting the direction of travel for research in Scotland by defining key areas with strategic actions. The recommendations made in the strategy also lay the groundwork to engage more people in research activity across Scotland.
This first-ever strategy – Scotland is among the first countries in the world to develop a government-sponsored, standalone research strategy for brain health and dementia – serves as a framework from which organisations will be able to build their own action plans for delivery, through the creation of brain health and dementia research boards, locally and nationally.
Developed with people, rather than for people, the foundation of the strategy comes from an appreciation that if meaningful research is driven by people’s needs, then it is vital that conversations take place between people and researchers. To facilitate this, the strategy recommends four key actions:
- Brain Health and Dementia Research Boards should be developed locally within NHS Boards to pursue the local research agenda in relation to dementia and brain health – representatives from these local boards should come together to form a national forum, to provide strategic oversight
- the national forum will provide a rapid research-review service to create a process that facilitates rapid translation of research into practice
- a national scoping review should be undertaken to investigate the current situation regarding research careers in brain health and dementia in Scotland, identifying bottlenecks and barriers that obstruct research careers in brain health and dementia at all levels
- a national strategy oversight board to be established to take responsibility for monitoring and supporting implementation of the strategy across Scotland
Commenting on the strategy launch Dr Terry Quinn, NRS Ageing Clinical Lead and Scottish Brain Health and Dementia Strategy committee member, said: “The primary purpose of this strategy is to facilitate relevant high-quality research that translates rapidly into health and social care practice as effectively as possible.
“The strategy, particularly with the creation of the local and national brain health and dementia research boards, will help to generate enthusiasm, martial resources, extend equality, diversity and inclusion, and pool talent in an endeavour that ultimately will improve the lives of everyone participating in, and affected by, research into brain health and dementia in Scotland.”
- Download the Scottish Brain Health & Dementia Research Strategy
- Find out more about the Scottish Dementia Research Consortium