A New YouTube Patient and Public Engagement Channel from Researchers at Institute of Neurology
20 June 2016
The core mission of the Institute of Neurology is to
translate discovery science into new diagnostics and ultimately treatments for
patients with neurological diseases. Bidirectional patient and public
engagement is a central part of this strategy.
Recent work from Rickie Patani lab and colleagues working in motor neuron and neuromuscular diseases have launched innovative new ways to engage effectively with public audiences. They have used a variety of digital media platforms.
New YouTube channel
Dr Helen Devine (MRC Clinical Research Fellow) and Mr Peter Barker
“We set out to create a series of engaging and accessible
videos to highlight the research being carried out on stem cells in the
Patani laboratory at UCL. The videos cover the role of stem cells in
understanding motor neuron diseases. However, we wanted to create more than
just information videos; the videos are being created in a video blog (vlog)
We aim to create a personal connection with our audience by introducing
the scientists in our laboratory along with the science projects. By putting a
face to the research we aim to remove barriers between researchers and the
wider publics including patients, carers and students.
We want to engage the
public in a genuine dialogue about our research, which will in turn promote
candid and informed feedback. In turn, our research and engagement priorities /
strategies may be enhanced by this interaction with the public.
As a result of
the videos and the patients getting to ‘know’ the scientists, patients may feel
empowered to get involved and make their voices heard. This in turn could allow
us to develop more clinically relevant outcomes for our studies or to develop
approaches that are more beneficial to patients as a result of actively
listening to their needs through this project.
In particular, we hope that by
understanding our research in a jargon-free manner, our audience will respond
with comments and questions that open a genuine dialogue. This debate will
challenge our preconceived thoughts about our research and potentially guide
new avenues for us to pursue”.
Science engagement through short videos
Dr Helen Devine (MRC Clinical Research Fellow) and Mr Peter Barker (Orinoko Media):
“Looking at different scientific papers can be quite
daunting at various points of a scientific career, let alone as a member of the
wider public. Here we used a jargon-free and engaging video-based approach to
address this issue through an existing collaboration with Peter Barker of Orinoco
Below is a link to our first such engagement, using this approach to explain the paper ‘Targeting protein homeostasis in sporadic inclusion body myositis’ published in Science Translational Medicine from the laboratories of Professors Michael Hanna and Linda Greensmith”.