Seasons Greetings

Seasons Greetings to all the staff and volunteers supporting the IMPROVE trial

As we come to the end of an exciting year for the IMPROVE trial we want to thank everyone involved for their support and to provide an update on progress.

The trial pilot is underway in 7 Pulmonary Rehabilitation (PR) services, we had hoped to have 8 pilot sites but unfortunately one was not able to continue. Four of the services are in the care as usual side of the trial. Following the training of 12 staff in the three PR services in the intervention side of the trial they have set up and are now running PR-buddy services.

Most things have gone to plan. All the sites in the intervention side of the trial have enthusiastic volunteers who have been trained as PR-buddies by PR service staff. The training has also gone extremely well. We have kept all the PR-buddies who have been recruited and trained and most are now supporting patients.

There have been a few setbacks too. We had two PR-buddies with COVID and one sadly had a bereavement but all three are still involved in the trial. Recruiting of patients has been difficult in some sites but this is mainly down to getting training right for staff and making sure we have enough people to do this. We think this will improve in 2024 with improved systems and staffing levels.

Recruitment for the main trial is going well. We have another 20 PR services already involved from all over the country. Ten of these are going to be setting up PR-buddy services. We are carrying out training sessions for PR-staff most weeks now. One PR service in the main trial has already completed recruitment of a group of 7 PR-buddies and their training. More PR-buddy recruitment and training will be taking place from January 2024 onwards. We are hoping that a few more PR services will be joining the trial in the next few weeks.

A massive thank you to everybody in the PR services and their research and development departments for supporting this trial. Even more importantly we are very grateful for the patients who have done PR and are now giving up their time to volunteer as PR-buddies to support other people to go to PR. Thank you for giving up your time to volunteer we really couldn’t do this trial without you. We are looking forward to continuing to work with you all in 2024.


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