UCL Institute of Health Informatics


'Nothing about us, with us'. Involvement of Experts by Experience in Homeless and Inclusion Health Research

The Problem

Inclusion Health aims to prevent and tackle health and social inequalities among the most vulnerable groups in society, such as people who have had experiences of homelessness, imprisonment, drug addiction, and sex work.  Research has consistently shown that these groups have very high rates of death and disease, even when they have access to free, high quality health care.  Making services merely available, however, is not sufficient for populations who have been marginalised and have difficulty engaging with services.  Involvement of Inclusion Health ‘target populations’ in research is essential to understanding how to improve services and policy and to reduce inequalities.  

Our Research

We reviewed the evidence for health problems faced by Inclusion health target populations and ‘what works’ to improve them.   To help interpret our findings and to make recommendations for research and practice, we involved a group of people with experiences of homelessness and social exclusion through an engagement workshop.  We used an array of participatory methods to stimulate the conversation and to ensure that participants felt that they were respected co-producers of the project.  This research will be published and will also inform other projects on Inclusion Health.  We received unanimously positive feedback from participants:

“The buzz generated throughout the day was invigorating.  Enforces that we are on the right track.  Really enjoyed the 'Inclusion Health' exercise.” 

 “The day was extremely informative and interesting.  Enjoyed it all.” 

 “Very friendly.  Very informative.  A sense of being 'part of'.  Complete respect.  Care and support.” 


Citizen driven health

Public health

Learning health systems

Patient and public involvement


Serena Luchenski

Rob Aldridge

Andrew Hayward


Dr Nigel Hewett, OBE, Medical Director of Pathway

Dr Nick Maguire, Psychiatry, University of Southampton

Dr Alistair Story, TB Find and Treat Service, University College London Hospitals

Groundswell, a London-based registered charity which exists to enable homeless and vulnerable people to take more control of their lives, have a greater influence on services and to play a full role in our community (www.groundswell.org.uk)

UCL Public Engagement Unit