SPCR Launch Event – Sandy Park, June 2022

On 22nd June, the Exeter Academic Collaboration for Primary Care (APEx), along with representation from the University of Exeter, key stakeholders from NIHR's School for Primary Care Research (SPCR), NHS Devon, and the public, were invited to an event at Sandy Park Conference Centre in Exeter, Devon.

The event formally launched APEx's membership of the SPCR, a prestigious membership awarded to nine higher education Primary Care departments across the UK, demonstrated research already undertaken as a result of joining the school, and future ambitions for primary care research in the South West.


Keynote speakers included a range of talks from members of the APEx community and beyond:

Prof Lisa Roberts, Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive, University of Exeter 

Prof Richard Smith, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Strategy & Resources), Professor of Health Economics, University of Exeter 

Prof Christian Mallen, Director, SPCR, Keele University, (pre-record) 

Georgina Fletcher, Assistant Director, SPCR

Mr Nigel Acheson, Chief Medical Officer, Integrated Care System for Devon (ICSD) 

Prof Willie Hamilton, Professor of Primary Care Diagnostics 

Prof Stuart Logan, Director of the NIHR Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care South West Peninsula (PenARC

Prof G.J. Melendez Torres, Professor of Clinical and Social Epidemiology 

Talks were also delivered on the 5 major themes of APEx's research:

Ageing, Frailty, Multimorbidity - introduced by Sallie Lamb  

Primary Care focused HSR - Introduced by John Campbell 

Mental Health - Introduced by Barney Dunn  

Primary Care Diagnostics - Introduced by Willie Hamilton

Public and Patient Involvement - Introduced by Annette Gillett and Phil Ruthen (Primary Care PPIE Working Group members)

Dr Emma Pitchforth introduced Dr Sinead Mcdonagh and Dr Sarah Moore who have been awarded NIHR SPCR Fellowships.


We thank everyone who attended and made this an inspiring and unforgettable event.

We're looking forward to the inevitable expansion of Primary Care research in the South West as a result of SPCR membership.