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The James Lind Alliance process

The direction of research is often set by researchers or by the drug industry. We want to enable patients, carers, family members, and the health and social care professionals who look after those with bipolar to have their say, so that future research is aligned with what matters to everyone whose life is affected by bipolar disorder.

The James Lind Alliance (JLA) process brings patient, carer, family member and clinician groups together on an equal footing in a Priority Setting Partnership to:

  • identify unanswered questions about a health problem which is important to them
  • work as partners to prioritise the questions
  • produce a 'top ten' list of jointly agreed priorities as research questions to be presented to researchers and funders.

Our Project Protocol document set out the aims, objectives and commitments of the Bipolar PSP. It set out how the project meets the principles established by the JLA. Our JLA Adviser played a central role in helping the Steering Group establish this protocol and worked to ensure that accountability and transparency were maintained throughout the project. 

Stage 1 - Establishing the Bipolar PSP

  • Steering Committee established
  • Protocol agreed
  • Partners recruited
  • Project management and arrangements confirmed
  • Initial stakeholder meeting

Stage 2 - Survey

  • Survey opened 7 October 2014
  • Partner organisations disseminated survey to members
  • Survey advertised

Stage 3 - Data management

  • Data management group identified and protocol agreed
  • Out of scope questions removed and collated
  • Questions arranged in a research question format and grouped by theme
  • Duplicates removed
  • Existing research checked
  • Results and process reviewed by Steering Committee

Stage 4 - Interim prioritisation

  • Questions sent to survey respondents, partner organisations
  • Respondents ranked the top 71 unanswered questions
  • Ranks combined
  • Shortlist of 35 unanswered questions produced

Stage 5 - Final prioritisation

  • Final prioritisation workshop held in Oxford on 14th June 2016 - Please use the link below to view or download:
  • Workshop attended by partners and partner organisations
  • Top ten unanswered research questions agreed by consensus