City awarded £5m research and development grant to tackle health inequalities

Published: 21 December 2023

Glasgow citizens will potentially benefit over the next five years from a £5million research and development grant to tackle health inequalities and to help improve the lives of people across the city

Glasgow citizens will potentially benefit over the next five years from a £5million research and development grant to tackle health inequalities and to help improve the lives of people across the city.

The grant has been awarded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) to the partnership made up of the council, Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS and the University of Glasgow.

Glasgow is the only Scottish city to secure funding this year.

Paper chain of people

The partnership’s successful application focuses on using data and research to inform and influence decision making on the wider determinants of health - such as employment, housing, education, and the physical environment - and to co-design and evaluate solutions that will help to improve the health and wellbeing of every person in the city regardless of their circumstances.

Councillor Susan Aitken, Leader of Glasgow City Council welcomed the announcement and funding that will help support the people of Glasgow.

Cllr Aitken said: “We have a long and proud history of collaboration between the council, NHSGGC and the University of Glasgow and this new iteration is bound to embed these historic links and produce innovative solutions to health inequalities in our city.

“Glasgow’s health inequalities and low healthy life expectancy are well documented.

“The recent impact of the pandemic and grip of the cost-of-living crisis has had disproportionate consequences for our most deprived communities.

“We need to do everything that we can to identify the factors behind that and ways in which we can overcome them.

“Our citizens deserve nothing less and I will champion this collaborative research and development work, which has the capacity to make a real difference.

“The initial focus will be on policies to reduce child poverty, building on the work we have been doing over the last few years.

“If we can secure early intervention in this area, it will have a positive effect on many areas of the health and wellbeing of Glasgow’s people.”

The first year of the grant funding will focus on the development and expansion of the project group, including third sector partners and stakeholders, and develop a shared vision and action plan on how to drive forward research-informed action on health inequalities in Glasgow.

Emilia Crighton, Director for Public Health at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said: “This significant research and development grant awarded from the NIHR is extremely welcomed by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

“We continue to work collaboratively with our partners at Glasgow City Council and Glasgow University to ensure the best possible outcomes for our communities and the funding from NIHR will go a long way in supporting our commitment to reducing health inequality across the city.

“By working together, we can help make a lasting impact on the health and wellbeing of the people Glasgow while fostering a healthier future for all.”

Professor Chris Pearce, Vice Principal for Research and Knowledge Exchange at the University of Glasgow said: “The University is delighted to co-lead the NIHR Health Research Determinants Collaboration in Glasgow. The School of Health and Wellbeing already has a long tradition of research on the social, economic and environmental determinants of health and health inequalities in Glasgow. In particular, the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, who are leading on our contribution to the HDRC, is an internationally recognised centre of excellence in research on the wider determinants of health.

 “We look forward to strengthening our existing links with the Council through our contribution to the delivery team and involvement in the new solutions-focussed research that the Collaboration will generate.”

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First published: 21 December 2023