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Research participants needed for study exploring older people’s experiences of returning home from hospital to receive further support


The project is being led by Researcher Toby Connell, who is also a qualified Social Worker working at Norfolk County Council. The research project is funded by the NIHR (National Institute for Health Research), and Toby is leading a research team comprising of four other social care practitioners and three ‘Experts by Experience’ (all Shaping our Lives members).

The project aims to understand more about older people’s experiences of returning home to receive ongoing support and ‘assessment’ from adult social services. The research team would like to produce valid research which will hopefully influence and inform future practice and service developments.

They are looking for:

They are looking for older participants (aged 65 or above) who have recently returned home from hospital, to receive follow-up support and ‘assessment’ from social services, and/ or their informal carer. They do not have to have received their formal assessment to take part, as the researchers are interested in their overall experience of returning home. However, if participants have received their assessment, the researchers will ask specific questions about this.

Participants will need to be able to give informed consent and be able to participate in a one-to-one interview, lasting up to 90 minutes. If they wish, participants can have a friend or family member present at the interview for support.

Expected commitment:

The activity will be a one-to-one interview lasting between 60 and 90 minutes. The interviews will take place in person, in the participant’s home. Alternatively, participants can choose to be interviewed using digital technology (Zoom or Microsoft Teams). Interviews will be audio recorded with the participant’s permission. Once the interview has been transcribed, the audio recording will be deleted. Transcripts and published findings will be made anonymous. The interviews will take place as soon as possible, to be arranged with each participant.

Commitment to inclusion:

Participants are invited to contact the Research Lead if they are interested in taking part. If you are an informal carer and would like to take part, they would welcome your involvement, even if the person you care for does not wish to participate. Their access needs will be discussed to ensure that barriers to participation are removed. For example, documents about the study can be sent in an accessible format. There is also flexibility as to where the interview takes place; if participants would prefer to meet at a different venue, there is budget available to refund their transport costs. However, a private venue is preferred for confidentiality reasons and to ensure that background noise is minimised. Unfortunately, there is no funding available for translation services, therefore participants will need to be able to speak English to participant in the interview. Any other accommodations or adjustments can be discussed on an individual basis.

If you apply for this opportunity please let the organisers know you saw it advertised by Shaping Our Lives. Thank you!


How to Apply

If you would like to take part, or want to know more about what this study, please contact Toby Connell (Research Lead) either by email ( or phone (07762 000340). A Participant Information Sheet will be sent to you, and you will be asked to read and sign a Consent Form before the interview takes place.

Involvement Payment Details

If you take part, you will receive a gift voucher worth £20 as thanks for your involvement. This will be sent electronically to your email address, or that of your informal carer / family member if preferred.