What is consumer partnership?
The medical research landscape is becoming increasingly reliant on the voices of the community to guide the direction of research. OPUS has developed a Consumer Engagement Program to facilitate the partnership of consumers and researchers. OPUS projects engage with consumers to ensure that medical research is of public interest and addresses the most critical issues in the community.
OPUS welcomes interested members of the public with little-to-no scientific background, of any age and gender, to participate in various activities related to the critique of research design, grant applications and feedback on research findings.
As an invaluable community voice, consumer participation will be tiered according to their chosen level of engagement and training support will be provided to guide participants.
Benefits of consumer parnership
Participants benefit our research by representing all consumers. They act as a ‘fresh pair of eyes’ for the department, as they may see the bigger picture often overlooked by researchers. Participants become advocates of osteoarthritic research and acquire a better understanding of the research landscape.
Consumers can contribute to various aspects of medical research. Contributions may include:
- Strategic planning, priority setting and redesigning research delivery
- Raising important issues
- Providing community perspectives on research deliverables such as new tools
- Providing insight on factors that directly relate to patients
Consumer purpose within OPUS
OPUS is looking to work with consumers within orthopaedic research to shape health care policies and practices. Our work is focused on improving patient outcomes by examining the entire osteoarthritis management journey. This is a large undertaking that can only succeed in producing practical outcomes by engaging with consumers to ensure that the research matches community expectations.
Consumer roles and responsibilities
The role of the consumer will be to:
- Challenge the teams with a different perspective
- Represent the community sentiment
- Provide constructive feedback:
- Improve transparency
- Remove jargon
- Improve patient information, communication methods with patients/community, patient interactions with research
- Improve awareness and understanding of osteoarthritis research
These roles depend on the tier in which consumers are recruited. Learn more about how the program works and roles within tiers on the Engagement Program page.