The Project Group is made up of the people who developed the research proposal and the funding application. Members have practitioner, researcher and patient and public involvement (PPI) experience and expertise. It meets monthly. Its purpose is to ensure that MEMORABLE is carried out as agreed and that the results are shared and publicised.

The chair for this group is the Chief Investigator, Ian Maidment, supported by Research Associate, Sally Lawson.

Ian Maidment

Dr Ian Maidment (Chief Investigator)

The strength of the project lies within the team approach, and we’ve got a small team but a strong team-working project - experts in their own particular areas.

My role in MEMORABLE:

I am the Chief Investigator. I developed the proposal and now lead the research. Before moving to Aston University in 2012, I spent 25 years in a variety of roles, mainly as a clinical pharmacist. I started working on medicines management and dementia about 10 years ago, and I've been working on this project for 4 years. I realised we often don’t handle medicines well in people who have chronic problems and we need to work out ways to improve things.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

Medicines can have great benefit and great harm, they need to be used appropriately in everyone. Older people are the main users and we need to work out how to use medicines best in them.

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

By having a very in-depth approach, by understanding the literature and interviewing key stakeholders, we aim to understand the problem and how to improve things. This is the first time that realism has been used for this area.

 

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

Support, empowerment, teamwork

Find out more about Dr Maidment and his research.

Sylvia

Sylvia Bailey (Patient and Public Involvement Lead)

MEMORABLE will give patients, carers and the public a voice to be heard.

My role in MEMORABLE:

I am the Patient and Public Involvement lead. My background is in primary care management, although I am currently retired. I have experience in setting up patient groups and focus groups. They are something I am passionate about because the comments tell us what patient experience is like and healthcare delivery is like. My role in MEMORABLE is to bring the patient and public voice to the research steering group and focus groups. I recruit participants and arrange suitable patient and public focus groups for the team.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

All health research is important to me. MEMORABLE is particularly important because it’s something that my patient groups are currently looking at – how our surgery delivers and supports patients to manage their complex regimes of medication.

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

Unless we know what services are operating well and what is failing patients – researchers are working blindly. It is crucial that the patients, carers and public voice is heard and everyone works collaboratively. MEMORABLE will be one of the first studies to give evidence based research from the literature and patients. Ultimately this research will help patients.

Words I associate with MEMORABLE:

Quality of life, collaboration, poly-pharmacy

Judy

A/Prof Judy Mullan (Co-applicant & Project Group Member)

My role in MEMORABLE:

I am a project group member and an international advisor having been involved in similar research here in Australia for several years, as well as my lived experience as a pharmacist. I am a pharmacist by background and am currently the Director for the Centre for Health Research Illawarra Shoalhaven Population (CHRISP) at the University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

This project is important to me because very little research is being done in this important area, and yet more and more informal carers worldwide are managing medications for older people living with dementia in the community setting.  

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

This study will help us to better educate informal carers about how to safely and effectively manage medications for their loved ones. 

Words I associate with MEMORABLE:

Safe and effective medication management is important

Find out more about Associate Prof Mullan and her research.

Geoff

Dr Geoff Wong (Realist Expert and Clinical Experience)

If you don't know understand what's going on, then you stand little chance of changing it.

My role in MEMORABLE:

Two things - as a seasoned realist reviewer, I bring along my experience in realist reviews. As a NHS GP, I have clinical experience of seeing many patients of all ages who are on a lot of medication. I work half time as a NHS GP and the half of the time as a Clinical Research Fellow at the University of Oxford.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

For patients, being on lots of medication and having to manage it all is not easy, especially if you are older. As a NHS GP, I would like to know what the best ways are to help people optimise (make the best use) of any medications they are on.

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

The real strength of this project is that we are deliberately unpacking and problematising the practice of medicines management that goes on in the community for older people on lots of medicines. By doing so we are trying to understand what happens and why in the real world of the NHS. Only if we understand why can we find the solutions.

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

Relevant, Important and Useful.

Find out more about Dr Wong and his research.

Sally Lawson

Sally Lawson (Research Associate)

Working together on what matters and in ways that matter to everyone involved.

My role in MEMORABLE:

I am the Research Associate. I carry out the day-to-day work on the research. I make sure it happens in the way it was planned and approved, with the Chief Investigator. I am a member of the Project Group and support the Stakeholder Group. Before moving into research, I worked as a State Registered Occupational Therapist for many years then service and project management.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

I believe it will make a difference for and with older people living at home who have to take lots of medications. I like the way the research is designed - bringing together the evidence about the way medication management should or could be done better, with people’s real experiences of how they make it work for them. 

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

I hope the framework that we develop will make sense and be useful, adding to what already works so that medication management can be improved. The framework, with its evidence and experience base, needs to make a difference for and with older people, carers and practitioners.

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

Collaborative. Real world. Better outcomes.

Anne

Anne Watson (Stakeholder Group Lead)

My role in MEMORABLE:

I am a member of the MEMORABLE Project Group and I also lead on the MEMORABLE Stakeholder Group. I am a pharmacist and work for Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS foundation trust as Medicines Management Research Lead.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

This project is important to me for a number of reasons:

  • The central focus of the project is an area of great need and no approach as yet has been fully successful. A successful outcome would be of value to patients and the NHS.
  • The realistic approach taken in this project, has not been used in this setting before and therefore has the potential to reap innovative solutions.
  • The project increases the opportunities for our patients and staff to engage with research

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

My hope is that a novel approach will be found to ease the complexities of dealing with all aspects of medication for elderly people such that their care becomes simpler, more effective and safer.

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

Novel, great team, needed.

Medha

Medha Kothari (Administrative Support)

Whilst providing administrative support to MEMORABLE, I have first-hand witnessed the passion each Project Group member has in seeing this research through and it is what continuously drives the project forward.

I am a pharmacist currently undertaking a joint PhD with Aston Business School and Life & Health Sciences, supervised with Dr. Ian Maidment and Professor Prasanta Dey. 

My research involves applying business strategies to medicines management for care home residents, with a specific interest in people with dementia. The aim of my research is to determine ways to make medicines management within care homes more efficient without compromising resident quality of life.

If you are a healthcare practitioner, care home manager or staff member, please email me at kotharim@aston.ac.uk if you are interested in participating in the study (it’s only a short interview that fits your schedule)!

Additionally, if you would like more information on my PhD, please email me at kotharim@aston.ac.uk and I would be happy to have a chat and answer any questions. 

My role in MEMORABLE:

I provide administrative support to MEMORABLE and the project group. I do a lot of the legwork in designing and pulling together information for the website and newsletters. I help organise project group and stakeholder group meetings and do my best to take a bit of the work load off the team. 

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

As a pharmacist and researcher in medicines management, I understand the challenges associated with managing older people’s medications. Medicines will only help a person if they are taken correctly, otherwise there is often no use in taking the medicine at all. MEMORABLE is important to me because it will help older people and carers think twice to understand the medicines they are taking and the best way in which to take them. 

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

Managing medicines is a challenge that can often be overlooked and has not been investigated thoroughly as of yet. I believe MEMORABLE could provide a deeper understanding of what older people and carers struggle with and would like to see change in the real world.

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

Passion, collaboration, significant 

Find out more about Medha Kothari here and here.

Hadar Zaman1

Hadar Zaman

My role in MEMORABLE:

I am Senior Lecturer in Pharmacy Practice at the University of Bradford and currently work as a Chief Pharmacist for a Mental Health organisation based in the North West. In addition to these roles I work for the CQC as a Medicines Inspector and sit on NICE guideline development group panel.

 

I am interested in looking at medicines management issues and challenges patients specifically from the Black and Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups face dealing with medicines. I will look at undertaking a systematic review firstly into this area which will hopefully inform any complex interventions that will be developed.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

I am really interested in exploring medication management issues from a BAME perspective. Coming from this background I am fully aware of the issues communities face. There is lack of research undertaken regarding BAME patients and medication management especially in the older adult population so this particular strand will be very useful in increasing our understanding and subsequently developing interventions to meet the needs of patients from BAME backgrounds.

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

This study through innovative research methodology will look at medication management challenges from multiple user perspectives and accurately capture challenges in medication management or conversely what actually works in overcoming issues associated with medication management. Study of this nature has not been done before despite many researchers attempting to come up with solutions to address medication management issues; thus far they have been unsuccessful.    

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

Innovative, translational, impactful 

Andrew Booth
Andrew Booth


“Complexity happens - so let's stop blaming the patient, the doctor, the pharmacist or the medicines!”

 

My role in MEMORABLE:

 

I am a systematic review methodologist with a background as an information specialist/medical librarian. At any one time I am providing specialist methods advice to between 6-12 literature review projects, typically funded by the National Institute for Health Research.

 

 

 

I am helping the project team to identify the most relevant studies for inclusion within our literature review so that we have the best possible chance of identifying ways of managing medication that work. 

 

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

 

Professionally, because the project faces interesting methodological challenges and involves collaboration with a diverse and interesting team. Personally, because my mother takes multiple medications for chronic disease and our long-distance phone calls frequently discuss this topic!

 

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

 

 Most immediately, it holds the prospect of designing an intervention that works. More generally, it could help us to gain a better understanding of how people respond to having multiple medications.

 

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

 

Drug Cocktail Shakers!

 

Dr. Jane McKeown

Dr. Jane McKeown (Nursing Advisor)

“Research that can really improve an area of life that causes anxiety in many older people.”

My role in MEMORABLE:

I’m a mental health nurse and a lecturer.  I work in a clinical/academic role with a focus on older people living with dementia. My role is as a nursing advisor and I also bring to the team my experience and networks in working and researching with older people living with dementia and their carers.

Why MEMORABLE is important to me:

I have seen both professionally and personally the challenges that some older people and their families face in managing complex medication regimes. This challenge increases when families are living with complex health problems and dementia.  

The difference MEMORABLE could make:

I think the study will truly illuminate and seek to understand the complexity for older people living in the community with complex medication regimes. I am especially pleased that people with dementia are included in the study as sometimes their experiences are not explored in research.  

Words I associate with MEMORABLE: 

innovation, improvement, inclusivity.