During the COVID-19 pandemic, our members have taken on new clinical roles and brought our teaching and training activities online.
See this post for a summary of new research at the Unit.
New roles taken on by PCU staff during the pandemic
Many Unit staff have taken on new or extended clinical roles and are volunteering in different ways.
Fiona Walter has become an Emergency Registered Practitioner (ERP) to contribute as a GP, back in her previous surgery, or in any other required clinical role (such as co-ordination or training).
Rakesh Modi offered more GP shifts in the day and doing more evening shifts helping out with 111 calls.
Juliet Usher-Smith has increased the number of clinical sessions she does at her clinical practice and has volunteered to work additional sessions for the national NHS COVID-19 Response Service. Juliet is also a member of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Advice Cell for Covid-19.
Alison Wood has registered online as an NHS Volunteer and she awaits further news from the Royal Voluntary Service as they deal with the 750,000+ registrations!
Peter Hartley (PhD Student) has returned to clinical work for the next few months.
Christi Deaton is engaged with Cambridge University Hospitals on work related to COVID-19, including a research review coming to the Research Advisory Committee, and a review of policy and practice for the Nursing, Midwifery, and AHP Advisory Committee.
Kate Williams is a member of an NHS ethics committee and has volunteered to provide ethics review of fast-tracked COVID-19 research studies. She has also volunteered to support the University (and wider) COVID-19 research / testing activities by completing the form that was circulated recently. She says: ‘Our local research labs are in need of basic lab support (glass washing, receiving deliveries etc) as well as more specialist support. No call to arms yet though!’
She has also signed up for Cochrane Crowd. Every week they have a COVID challenge. http://crowd.cochrane.org/
Anna Spathis is working more clinically now within the hospital palliative care team (CUH, seeing ward patients at the end of life), as well as increasing her usual clinical work in the Breathlessness Intervention Service.
Ben Bowers is going to take on some clinical shifts with Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust’s community nursing / specialist palliative care team during the COVID-19 crisis.
Stephen Barclay is leading the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG guidance on the COVID-19 clinical management of end-of-life care in the community
Mila Petrova and the EOLC group have created an online ‘digest’ on palliative and end of life in the context of the Coronavirus: https://www.phpc.cam.ac.uk/pcu/palchase/coronavirus-and-palliative-care/
Many of our staff are helping in neighbourhoods with collecting prescriptions and delivering food and several are awaiting news on being NHS community support people.
Information collated on 8 April 2020.
The General Practice Education Group (GPEG), which delivers around a fifth of the clinical teaching for the University’s medical students, has taken all clinical teaching online.
All our year 6 medical students have just graduated and we congratulate them very warmly and wish them all the best in their future careers, especially at they start in this current period. See the University news story here.
Dr Richard Darnton, Director of GPEG, provides a video update on GPEG’s teaching on YouTube here.
The Department’s MPhil team (Jean Adams, Antonis Antoniou, Paul Pharaoh, Rosemarie Bell, Juliet Usher-Smith and module leaders) have converted all the face-to-face teaching to online, developed online learning resources for all the students, and are working to support the students who are now across the world (we have students in time zones from -7 to +11).
Our ACFs not already in full time clinical practice are returning to clinical practice.
Meetings and seminars
We are running weekly online meetings (T@3) for all staff and bringing Unit research seminars and the Qualitative Research Forum online.
Much of our research is usually conducted in primary care or other clinical settings. Gathering data in clinical settings during the lockdown period of this pandemic is not possible, both because health system resources are needed to respond to the pandemic and because usual clinical business is disrupted and any data gathered now would give a distorted picture. We are in contact with all our partners during this period and our research groups are progressing work that does not depend on direct contact with patients or clinicians. We’ll continue to announce ongoing research news on this website and share our outputs with our partners, stakeholders and with external media when appropriate.
If you have any questions about research you may be contributing to, please contact your link person in the relevant research group in the first instance and our Communications Manager if you need further information
University information pages
University of Cambridge Coronavirus support pages for staff
See news about latest COVID-19 related research on the University’s research news pages
Lucy Lloyd, Communications, Primary Care Unit