We are a group of people with asthma, parents and carers of people with asthma, and we get involved in the Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research’s research in a variety of ways. We offer expertise based on our experience of living with asthma and also bring a range of personal and professional skills from other walks of life. Currently our group includes over 120 people, but we are always looking for new members to join us.
Many members offer help from the comfort of their home, using email or other methods of staying in touch. There are a number of different ways to get involved – you can look over leaflets, give advice about how to recruit people for a study, or offer ideas about how to share study findings. You could also help out with a Science Festival, speak to researchers at a conference, or attend face-to-face meetings if that is what interests you. It is up to you to decide how you would like to get involved.
You can take part from anywhere in the UK, and there is no requirement to travel. Much of our work with researchers can be done from home, either over the phone or email. Equally, some of our researchers are keen to meet people face-to-face so opportunities do arise where we ask people to attend meetings.
We only ask our members to speak from their own personal experiences living with asthma or caring for someone with asthma. We welcome people who have no previous experience with research or people who have contributed through other patient involvement schemes. We will help you identify projects and opportunities that best suit your interests. We also work to make sure you feel comfortable and confident in contributing to projects, and try to provide information about any relevant training opportunities.
We follow Involve’s guidelines for providing financial support for patient volunteers. If members travel face-to-face or contribute to a study or project for a longer period of time, financial support would be provided. For small tasks such as emailing comments, there is no financial reimbursement.