EXPLORING THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON THE DEVELOPMENT AND DELIVERY OF WORK AND HEALTH RESEARCH DURING THE PANDEMIC PERIOD
V. Parsons1, E. Wainwright2, M. Karanika-Murray3, G. Muiry1, E. Demou4,
1Guy's and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust / King's College London, UK
2Epidemiology Group, School of Medicine, Medical Sciences and Nutrition, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK
3Nottingham Trent University, UK
4University of Glasgow, UK
The unfolding global Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 created a sudden and prolonged disruption to the planned delivery of scientific research across many specialties, including work and health research.
To explore the practical challenges and impact the Covid-19 pandemic had on the continued development and delivery of work and health research, and to consider lessons learned and future research priorities.
A cross-sectional study
Thirty-three questionnaires were completed. Sixty-one percent of respondents were female, the majority (78%) had over 11 years of research experience, and 76% worked mainly in academia. The majority of respondents (88%) were able to progress with research development activities (grant development and strategic research work), with approximately 10 studies needing to be paused or suspended during this period. A larger proportion of research staff were redeployed to assist with other studies or were furloughed. A range of practical and logistical factors were found to impact work and health research activity during the pandemic, with some participants benefiting from increased opportunities to collaborate on new multidisciplinary studies, and increased flexibility and more inclusive work practices. Other researchers experienced challenges that had an adverse impact on research delivery and intervention delivery coupled with inadequate working environments, poor team cohesion, and isolation. A range of future priorities for research was highlighted.
We identified a range of lessons learned and opportunities that can be used to support, help prioritise or further research activities in the field of work and health research in the future.