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BACKGROUND: Formal research priority setting is a recognized way of identifying important clinical research questions and promoting these as topics for commissioned research. This paper describes a research priority setting exercise conducted by the National Institute of Academic Anaesthesia (NIAA). METHODS: Possible research questions were identified from a questionnaire sent to holders of the Final Fellowship in Anaesthesia in Great Britain and Ireland and to lay representatives. The responses to the first questionnaire were collated to produce a list of potential research questions which were then sent to the same constituency for scoring. The results of this scoring process were considered by an expert panel and statements of research need generated for selected questions. The questions from the first round were also reviewed with the help of representatives of NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre (NETSCC). RESULTS: For the first questionnaire, 308 responses with 447 suggestions for research were received. A total of 15 questions were included in the second questionnaire, for which 2226 responses were received. The expert panel identified five questions for prioritization. A further nine were identified from discussions with representatives of NETSCC. CONCLUSIONS: A total of 14 research priorities were identified by the exercise, two of which have been submitted to the NIHR Health Technology Assessment (HTA) programme as statements of research need. Potential funding streams for the remaining questions are being sought. We discuss some implications of this exercise for research strategy in the speciality.

Original publication




Journal article


Br J Anaesth

Publication Date





42 - 52


Academies and Institutes, Anesthesiology, Critical Care, Data Collection, Humans, Perioperative Care, Research, Research Support as Topic, Surveys and Questionnaires, United Kingdom