Increasing Join Dementia Research recruits through GP engagement

Project Description
A new initiative piloted in the West of England with local GP surgeries, has revealed a successful approach to recruiting volunteers to Join Dementia Research. A joint project between the NIHR Local Clinical Research Network (LCRN) and the Office of the NIHR National Director for Dementia Research, aimed to work alongside GPs in the region to identify and engage with patients via mailings to recruit for dementia research studies.

Adam Smith, Programme Manager for the Office of the NIHR National Director for Dementia Research, was keen to partner with this channel: “There are over 450,000 people living with dementia being cared for by their local doctor. Despite this however, they currently have one of the lowest number of referrals of all the channels that recruit to Join Dementia Research”.

  • Start by approaching GPs who are part of the NIHR RSI scheme or those interested in dementia
  • As GPs are very time-limited, send out a letter in advance telling them exactly what you require from them
  • Make it simple for the surgeries, keep the work you are asking them to do to a minimum
  • Remember to evaluate uptake and feedback success to GP Practices
  • The letter you send out to patients needs to be engaging and informative – tell them about why Join Dementia Research is so important and why we need their help
  • Consider who you are mailing – everyone over 55? Just people with a dementia diagnosis?
  • Before any mailings are sent out, ensure the charity helplines have been informed so they can prepare for phone calls and application forms
Hear About the Project
Testing GP direct marketing to patients
Testing GP direct marketing to patients