Centre for Health and Social Evaluation


The Centre for Health and Social Evaluation (CHASE) is a high quality facility, providing evaluation and research expertise for agencies delivering health, education and social care, both locally and nationally.

Our team of researchers come from a variety of professional backgrounds and have extensive experience of working with health and local authorities, community groups, voluntary and charity organisations and others. As part of the Health and Social Care Institute (HSCI), we are also able to draw on a wider pool of research expertise, as well as working in collaboration with research staff at other universities regionally and nationally. We are an integral part of Fuse, the Centre for Translational Research in Public Health and the NIHR School of Public Health Research.


CHASE was originally set up in 2005 and has gradually expanded its role to undertake a wide portfolio of research and evaluation projects. Our projects have included evaluations of:

  • health promotion programmes and campaigns
  • community health initiatives
  • service delivery in health and social care
  • behaviour change
  • professional and workforce development
  • role change programmes
  • organisational change impacts
  • cost-effectiveness and social return on investment
  • impact of new technologies

Browse our current and completed projects below for examples.

CHASE is also able to undertake rapid and systematic reviews. The recent establishment of HSCI as an affiliate Centre of the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) for systematic review has greatly enhanced our capability and capacity in this field. CHASE also provides consultancy and advice, training in evaluation expertise and a range of networking activities to promote good practice in evaluation research.

CHASE is directed by Professor Sharon Hamilton and Professor Rosemary Rushmer.

Professor Sharon Hamilton

Sharon Hamilton is a Professor in Nursing at Teesside University, and has substantial experience in clinical nursing and public health, and has undertaken senior leadership roles in the NHS. She also has extensive experience in nursing research. She has been instrumental in bringing JBI Affiliate Centre status to the Institute, and is a Co-Director of the Centre.
More about Professor Sharon Hamilton

Professor Rosemary Rushmer

Rosemary Rushmer is a Professor in Knowledge Exchange and Public Health at Teesside University and also a Senior Investigator within Fuse. She is published in the areas of: using research evidence; patient safety and quality improvement; team working; learning organisations and communities of practice. Rosemary has worked in a practice and policy context as well as academe.
More about Professor Rosemary Rushmer


Health and Social Care Institute
Constantine Building
Teesside University
Tees Valley

T: 01642 342967
Fax: 01642 342983


CHASE researchers

Professor Sharon Hamilton

Director of CHASE
T: 01642 342936 | E:
More about Professor Sharon Hamilton

Professor Rosemary Rushmer

Director of CHASE
T: 01642 342756 | E:
More about Professor Rosemary Rushmer

Sarit Carlebach

Research fellow
T: 01642 342968 | E:
More about Sarit Carlebach

Susan Jones

Research associate
T: 01642 342984 | E:
More about Susan Jones

Dora Machaira

Research associate
T: 01642 384126 | E:

Rebekah McNaughton

Research associate
T: 01642 342755 | E:
More about Rebekah McNaughton

Sarah Dinsdale

Research associate
T: 01642 342770 | E:
More about Sarah Dinsdale

Pat Watson

Research fellow
T: 01642 384167 | E:
More about Pat Watson


Current projects

An evaluation of the MA programme - Advancing Quality, Safety and Governance in Health and Social Care

An evaluation of the masters programme at Teesside University - Advancing Quality, Safety and Governance in Health and Social Care.

Funded by: internally

Timescale: November 2016 - June 2017

Risky Behaviours: Sexual Health and Alcohol Misuse - Phase 2

Working in collaboration with researchers from Bristol, a scoping activity is being undertaken prior to the development of a Sex and Relationships Curriculum which is to be trialled across the UK. This has involved working with teaching staff and young people to find out what works well for SRE in secondary schools.

Funded by: School of Public Health Research

Timescale: 2016 - May 2017

Smoke-Free Mental Health Services - North of England

Scoping exercise to prepare a bid to look at smoke free policies in mental health trusts across the North of England. This exercise is being undertaking collaboratively with Yorkshire and the North West.

Funded by: Public Health England

Timescale: 2017

Evaluation of the introduction of fully smoke free policies in two North East Foundation NHS Trusts (Northumbria, Tyne & Wear and Tees, Esk & Wear Valleys)

Process evaluation of the introduction of fully smoke free policies in two NHS Foundation Trusts in the North East that focus on mental health and learning disability. The evaluation is looking at the development of the smoke free strategy for staff and in-patients, and its implementation across the Trusts, including staff training, infrastructure, development of support networks for quitters, and communication and engagement activities

Funded by: Public Health England and both NHS Foundation Trusts

Timescale: June2016 - August 2017

Workplace Health Needs Assessment - continuing programme

Timescale: August 2016 - 2017

  • A Health Needs Assessment exercise of the staff at Tees, Esk and Wear Valley NHS Trust
  • A Reassessment exercise of the staff and students at Teesside University

A Fairer Start

Funded by: North Tees and Hartlepool Clinical Commissioning Group and Stockton Borough Council.
Timescale: May 2015 - May 2018

Evaluation of an early years' intervention that aims to improve cognitive, social and emotional development, speech, language and nutrition of children from conception to 3 years old.

Helping patients with chronic lower back pain to better understand their pain

Funded by: Physiotherapy Research Foundation
Timescale: January 2016 - March 2018

This joint clinical project between James Cook University Hospital and Teesside University is examining ways to help patients with chronic lower back pain better understand their pain and issues around its causes.

Developing an SROI model to assess the social value for independent living

Funded by: Coast and Country
Timescale: October 2015 - February 2016

Developing and SROI model for the company to use to assess social value of their range of interventions to their clients.

Deaf-blindness: Social Return on Investment Study (SROI)

Funded by: SCENE
Timescale: August 2015 - March 2017

Using SROI to assess the social value of a specialist training intervention developed by SCENE to be available to those having contact with individuals with deaf-blindness.

JBI Umbrella review of effective interventions in pregnancy

Funded: Teesside University
Timescale: July 2015 - August 2016

A JBI umbrella review considering the effectiveness of interventions to change behaviour in pregnancy using weight management, smoking cessation, and alcohol reduction interventions as examples.

Ur Choice

Funded by: City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council
Timescale: 2014 to Sept 2017

Description: Ur Choice is a relationships and sex education programme that is delivered in participating secondary schools in Bradford and Airedale. Researchers from Teesside University are providing independent evaluation of the programme.

Fluoride Varnishing - Phase Two

Funded by: Public Health England
Timescale: May 2015 - February 2016

Following on from a previous project, to explore the parents' perspective of implementing the fluoride varnishing programme within schools.

Completed projects

For further information about completed projects and reports email

Mental health issues of children and young people

Funded by: North East Local Authorities
Timescale: November 2015 - October 2016

This is a scoping exercise looking at (i) trends in the mental health and wellbeing of young people aged 14-19 years, with reference to underreporting, data analysis and to the NE region (ii) patterns of service provision including third sector provision seeking to identify areas of effective practice and (iii) identification of 'best bet' interventions.

An evaluation of how public health practitioners view and engage with research

Funded by: School of Public Health Research
Timescale: 2014 - 2015

A review of requests for research support, qualitative interview study and a survey of public health practitioners.

SOLID: supporting looked after children in decreasing drugs and alcohol

Funded by: National Institute of Health Research
Timescale: July 2015 - 2018

A multi-centre external pilot randomised controlled trial to decrease risky substance use (drugs and alcohol) and improve mental health and well-being of Looked After Children aged 12 -20 years.

Weight Management

Funded by: North Yorkshire County Council
Completed: March 2016

An evaluation of the different models of delivery of tier 2 lifestyle and weight management services in use across North Yorkshire.

Workplace Health Needs Assessment

Funded by: Middlesbrough Borough Council
Completed: April 2016

  • A Health Needs Assessment of staff and students at Teesside University and Middlesbrough College and staff at South Tees NHS Foundation Trust.
  • A review of the literature relating to healthy settings approaches.
  • A process evaluation of the early implementation and potential of 'Extra Life', a Healthy Settings approach in Middlesbrough. Qualitative interviews have explored the views and experiences of key people involved in the early implementation of 'Extra Life' across three large settings in Middlesbrough.

Smoking Cessation in Pregnancy (babyClear)

Funded by NIHR: School for Public Health Research
Completed: December 2015

An evaluation of a programme to assist pregnant women in the North East in stopping smoking.

Vital Health Volunteers

Funded by: Redcar and Cleveland Voluntary Development Agency
Completed: August 2015

To evaluate a project that aims to increase the number of volunteers available to provide social support to elderly and vulnerable clients.

Evaluation of the Community Agents project in Redcar and Cleveland

Funded by: Tees Valley Rural Community Council
Completed: March 2016

Evaluation of a project to meet the social needs of the elderly and vulnerable population in Redcar and Cleveland in order to reduce the need for hospital admissions or residential care.

Infographics: Hartlepool

Funded by: Institute of Local Government
Completed: August 2016

Evaluation of the awareness and use of a new weight management visualisation in Hartlepool.

Scarborough: Neighbourhood Care Teams

Funded by: Scarborough and Ryedale CCG
Completed: July 2015

Description: an evaluation of the neighbourhood care team service in Scarborough, Ryedale and Whitby areas.

Making Every Contact Count in Stockton (MECC)

Funded by Stockton Borough Council
Completed: June 2015

To evaluate a pilot scheme to introduce MECC within the Stockton Borough.

Risky sexual behaviour and alcohol misuse in young people: developing a multi-component universal education intervention

Funded by NIHR School of Public Health Research
Completed: April 2015

Part of a platform of studies undertaken in collaboration with a number of other research centres linked through membership of the School of Public Health Research. Teesside undertook case studies in schools to ascertain whether the approach was acceptable to students and to service delivery staff. The feasibility of a new intervention was then to be explored by another of the research centres.

Safeguarding in Stockton

Funded by: Stockton Borough Council
Completed: March 2015

An evaluation of the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) in Stockton Children's Services


Funded by: Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland Borough Councils
Timescale: August 2014

An evaluation of infant feeding and breastfeeding peer support services in Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland

Financial incentives for childhood immunisation

Funded by NIHR Health Technology Assessment
Timescale: September 2012 - July 2014

Investigation of the feasibility of offering financial incentives to parents for childhood immunisation. CHASE will be collaborating with Fuse (The Centre for Translational Research in Public Health) on this study.

Fluoride Varnishing Evaluation

Funded by Dental Public Health, Middlesbrough
Timescale: April - December 2013

An evaluation of a flouride varnishing intervention in Middlesbrough.

'Living well, dying well'

Funded by Macmillan Cancer Care
Timescale: January 2013 - December 2013

An evaluation of the contribution of the key roles and champions towards the objectives of the Macmillan (Cheshire) Living Well, Dying Well Public Health approach.

North Tees - Family Voice

Funded by North Tees and Hartlepool Foundation Trust
Timescale: August 2012 - December 2013

Evaluation of the carer diaries introduced to support carers and staff at their patients' end of life.

Maternal Obesity

Funded by: Middlesbrough Borough Council
Completed: November 2013

A qualitative evaluation of the maternal obesity care pathways implemented at South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Fuse: Evaluation of the Fuse Sandpit Event

Funded by Fuse, the Centre for Translational Research in Public Health
Timescale: March 2013 - October 2013

An evaluation of a residential training event for post-graduate students and early career researchers working in the field of public health.

Fuse: Research across policy and practice boundaries

Funded by Fuse, the Centre for Translational Research in Public Health
Timescale: January - October 2013

An evaluation of a number of collaborative research projects undertaken by Fuse with policy and practice partners, to identify effective methods for collaborative working.

Tees Valley: Review of initiatives to address poverty

Funded by NHS Tees
Timescale: January - October 2013

To identify projects locally that address poverty.

Healthy Lifestyles in Pregnancy and Beyond

Funded by NHS Tees
Timescale: December 2012 - November 2013

A qualitative evaluation of the experiences of women who had been placed on the raised BMI pathways at James Cook University Hospital during the period when they were pregnant.

Hearty Lives

Funded by NHS Tees
Timescale: September 2011 - October 2013

An evaluation of an initiative in Hartlepool schools funded by the British Heart Foundation. The purpose of the initiative is to raise understanding and awareness amongst school aged children and their families about health promotion issues affecting heart health.

Evaluation of the NHS Health Check in Tees: a cost effectiveness and patient compliance study

Funded by NHS Middlesbrough
Timescale: May 2011 - December 2013

An economic assessment of the programme and evaluation qualitative aspects of long-term follow up and outcomes.

Middlesbrough Healthy Living Pharmacy

Funded by NHS Tees
Timescale: November 2012 - September 2013

An evaluation of the Healthy Living Pharmacy scheme across Tees. This scheme is a training programme that allows individual pharmacy organisations to become Kitemark Level 1 accredited in delivering enhanced services.

Management of school placements

Funded by by Teesside University
Timescale: October 2012 - June 2013

An evaluation of the computer software systems at Teesside University managing the placements of students undertaking degree courses for nursing and allied health professions.

Access to dental services for people with learning difficulties

Funded by NHS Middlesbrough
Timescale: January 2012 - November 2012

An exploration of dental health issues for people with learning difficulties in Middlesbrough, identifying its importance as a major clinical issue, current data collection, and looking at the experiences of service users and those caring for them in accessing dental services in Middlesbrough.

Making every contact count

Funded by the North East Strategic Health Authority
Timescale: September 2012 - January 2013

Evaluation of the Royal Society of Public Health (RSPH) level 2 training module 'Understanding health improvement' which was commissioned by North East Strategic Health Authority as part of their commitment to the 'Making every contact count' agenda.

Community equipment - part 2

Funded by NHS Middlesbrough
Timescale: May 2012 - November 2012

Qualitative research looking at the views of service providers about the provision of community equipment to people with health needs to enable them to maintain independence in their own homes.

Diamond model project

Funded by the Institute of Local Government
Timescale: June 2012 - December 2012

Provision of consultancy advice on the logic modelling process for the Diamond model project about engaging young people in decision making in communities.

Impact assessment of the end of life workforce development project

Funded by the North East Strategic Health Authority
Timescale: June 2012 - November 2012

An assessment of the impact of the end of life workforce development project to provide end of life care training to the independent sector across the various PCT areas in the North East.

End of life carers' diaries pilot at North Tees and Hartlepool Foundation Trust

Funded by North Tees and Hartlepool Foundation Trust
Timescale: August 2012 - July 2013

Evaluation of the carer diaries introduced to support carers and staff at their patients' end of life.

Social prescribing

Funded by Middlesbrough PCT
Timescale: March - December 2011

Literature review of social prescribing practice in the UK.

Access to health services for people with learning difficulties

Funded by NHS Middlesbrough
Timescale: January - November 2011

An exploration of how people with learning difficulties access health promotion and preventative services, including the perspectives of carers regarding their role in facilitating access.

Role of the palliative care discharge nurse

Funded by South Tees Hospitals Foundation Trust
Timescale: May 2010 - July 2012

Evaluation of this new role set up as a pilot project at James Cook University Hospital to facilitate the discharge of patients on the end of life pathway to their preferred place of care.

Compassionate communities

Funded by North East SHA (NESHA) Innovation Fund
Timescale: March 2010 - August 2011

Funded by NESHA, the innovation fund developed a compassionate community approach, and embedded the Good Death Charter locally.

Evaluation of the County Durham Winter Maintenance Programme

Funded by the North East Public Health Observatory
Timescale: March - July 2011

An evaluation of the impact of a winter maintenance and falls programme undertaken during the winters 2009-11 in County Durham funded by the NHS County Durham. The aim of the programme was to reduce the number of fall-related injuries.

Evaluation of end of life care GP training module

Funded by the North of England Cancer Network
Timescale: January - July 2011

An evaluation of the practical palliative care training module for GPs, looking at the impact of the training on their practice.

Families talking: service evaluation

Funded by Families Talking
Timescale: September 2009 - May 2011

This was an evaluation of a Teesside-based counselling service for families affected by parental separation and divorce.

Learning in the workplace

Funded by County Durham and Darlington PCT
Timescale: July 2008 - March 2011

An ongoing evaluation of a major organisational initiative regarding the commissioning and delivery of health care to the local population. An action research approach is being undertaken.

Stop smoking service at James Cook University Hospital

Funded by Middlesbrough PCT
Timescale January 2009 - February 2011

This was an evaluation of a new initiative to broaden the stop smoking policy within the hospital.


Funded by NHS Middlesbrough
Timescale: February - December 2010

An evaluation of referral process for Safeguarding in Middlesbrough Borough Council.

Teesside vascular assessment programme

Funded by Middlesbrough PCT
Timescale: September 2009 - August 2010

The aims of the evaluation of TVAP were to identify barriers and levers to successful implementation, highlight best practice, inform service improvements and shape future commissioning strategies to inform full rollout.

Community equipment

Funded by NHS Middlesbrough
Timescale: March - June 2010

A literature review of the impact and value of providing community equipment to enable people with long term health needs to continue to live in their own homes.

Spirituality module

Funded by North East Strategic Health Authority
Timescale: January - June 2010

An evaluation of the spirituality module in the School of Health & Social Care at Teesside University.

GP end of life review analysis

Funded by NHS Middlesbrough
Timescale: March - May 2010

An analysis of questionnaires sent to GP practices regarding their involvement in end of life care pathways.

Sex and relationships education programme in Middlesbrough schools

Funded by Middlesbrough PCT
Timescale: September 2009 - March 2010

Service evaluation of the programme and comparison with other areas to produce recommendations for future development.

Personalised budgets for health improvement

Funded by Middlesbrough PCT
Timescale: September 2009 - March 2010

Literature review and scoping study to identify good or best practice nationally and internationally in order to inform the design and implementation of this innovative scheme by Middlesbrough PCT.

Junior one life project

Timescale: May-September 2009

An evaluation of a physical activity and nutrition intervention with children and parents in the Darlington area.

An evaluation of the public health practitioner role

Funded by NHS Stockton
Timescale: October 2009 - March 2010

An evaluation of the new role of public health practitioner. This role was set up to support the development of public health working in primary care services.

Exercise on referral

Funded by Teeesside PCTs
Timescale: January 2009- February 2010

An evaluation and comparison of the exercise on referral schemes operating in each of the four local authority areas on Teesside.

Health inequalities in former coalmining and industrial communities in England

Funded by IdeA
Timescale: March 2009 - March 2010

CHASE in collaboration with colleagues at Durham University looked at how health inequalities in England have been affected by the demise of coalmining and heavy industry, focussing on specific industries in different parts of the country.

The publication from this research is aimed at Local Government agencies. A copy of this report can be downloaded.
Download the report

Wansbeck community alcohol project - service evaluation

Funded by the Northumberland Drug and Alcohol Team
Timescale: January 2008 - April 2009

We are undertook an evaluation of this innovative community based service, looking at partnership working and the views and opinions of service users and their families.

Primary alcohol and drugs service at James Cook University Hospital

Funded by the Safer Middlesbrough Partnership
Timescale: January-May 2009

A service evaluation of the PADS service to inform future funding and decision making.

Middlesbrough Deaf Centre

Funded by Middlesbrough PCT
Timescale: January-May 2009

A service evaluation of the role of the centre and the views of service users.

Evaluation of a dance programme on the health and well-being of North East pre-school children

Funded by Dance City
Timescale: October 2008 - May 2009

An evaluation in collaboration with colleagues at University of Durham.

Children and young people's views of factors which influence their mental health

Funded by NHS Health Scotland
Timescale: November 2008 - May 2009

A critical literature review, working in conjunction with the Rowan Group at the University of Aberdeen.

Dental - smoking cessation

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: January 2008 - June 2009

Dental services together with the stop smoking service are piloting a scheme which will enable dental practice nurses to support smokers who want to quit. An evaluation is being undertaken to assess the views and experiences of smokers who have participated in the pilot scheme.

A review of sexual health and relationships education activities and resources in Scotland's primary schools.

Funded by NHS Health Scotland
Timescale: January 2008 - June 2009

This project looks at the existing range of sexual health and relationships education provision in a sample of Scottish primary schools. A number of case studies will investigate innovative practice in a small number of schools. The research is being undertaken in collaboration with the University of Aberdeen.

Emergency care services

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: March 2008 - March 2009

An evaluation of a pilot scheme of a mobile accident and emergency triage for night revellers. The pilot, in collaboration between Middlesbrough PCT and Cleveland Police, was to reduce the number of non-critical hospital admissions at peak social times on Fridays and Saturdays between the hours of 10.00pm and 4.00am.

Cardio-vascular disease

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: March 2008 - March 2009

An evaluation of the PCT's Healthy Heart project, set up to explore whether people will use a mobile clinic in the workplace to receive a heart check.

Hepatitis B universal vaccination programme

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: November 2007 - September 2008

This investigation aimed to improve the quality and effectiveness of the vaccination programme through a mixed methods study of the experiences, attitudes and beliefs of pupils, parents/carers and professionals involved.

National child measurement programme

Funded by the Department of Health
Timescale: March - May 2008

This research explored different approaches to informing parents and children about the outcome of height and weight measurements which are now undertaken as part of the National Child Measurement Programme.

Stop smoking service

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: March 2008

We undertook a critical review of the literature to determine the implications for practice.

Life store

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: June 2007 - February 2008

CHASE undertook a consultancy role to explore how this facility could be developed for future use.

Knowledge of HPV and acceptability of the HPV vaccination among young people, parents and health professionals

Funded by NHS Health Protection Scotland
Timescale: May - December 2007

This research assessed the current knowledge levels of HPV and the acceptability of HPV vaccination amongst young people, parents, health professionals and key co-ordinating school staff.

Evaluation of the palliative care course for specialist registrars

Funded by Cancer Care Alliance
Timescale: March - August 2007

This course was aimed at increasing the knowledge and understanding of specialist registrars working in various hospitals across England. The evaluation assessed the knowledge gained and the benefits to staff who attended the course.

Pilot coronary heart disease risk assessment

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: February - July 2007

There is a high incidence of heart disease in the Middlesbrough area. Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust piloted a risk assessment service aimed at finding people over the age of 40 who are potentially at high risk of developing coronary heart disease. This evaluation reviewed the pilot's effectiveness, talking to users and non-users of the service, and highlighted areas of best practice to be included when the service is rolled out to other venues. It also highlighted areas for improvement.

Easy access fund

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: June 2007

The Easy Access Fund is a community-based fund offering small grants of up to £1,000 to community groups throughout Middlesbrough. Awards are given to projects which promote improvements in the health of individuals and communities. Originally set up using Health Action Zone money, it has been mainstreamed by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust and is managed by the Tees Valley Community Foundation. Our evaluation assessed the fund's achievements and satisfaction levels with the way it operates.

Out of hours service evaluation for Butterwick Hospice

Funded by North Tees Primary Care Trust
Timescale: April 2007

The Out of Hours service is provided to palliative care patients outside the normal working hours. North Tees Primary Care Trust commissioned CHASE to evaluate the effectiveness of the service, provided by the Butterwick Hospice, by talking to service users, carers and staff.

Health Bytes: an evaluation of computer based health promotion

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: March 2007

Health Bytes are computer-based health messages which are intended to encourage students at Teesside University to click through to a health-related website for further information. Topics include smoking, alcohol and sexual health. The evaluation included discussions with students and analysis of 'click' statistics.

Evaluating the role of community parent advisors and school nurse assistants

Funded by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust
Timescale: March 2007

This evaluation looked at the present role of the school nurse assistant posts, which evolved from the community parent advisors project run by Middlesbrough Primary Care Trust. School nurse assistants currently help the school nurses in their health promotion work, basic screening and other specific projects. The evaluation aimed to gain the views and opinions of the school nursing teams as well as parents in the community.

Innovation and improvement learning module evaluation

Funded by the NHS Institute
Timescale: August 2006 - February 2007

Teesside University was awarded pilot status to design and deliver the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement Learning Module within the School of Health & Social Care to a wide range of pre-registration students on their final placement. Target groups of students include nurses, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, medical students, operating department practitioners and public health students.

The module offers a three-day programme focused on developing skills in innovation and service improvement amongst students moving into integrated service settings. It aims to contribute to the health and social care modernisation agenda.

A critical appraisal of the evidence related to communicating with parents about MMR immunisation risks and benefits

Funded by NHS Health Scotland
Timescale: September- December 2006

An appraisal of the relationship between health professionals and parents which enhances or hinders the uptake of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccination amongst parents with small children. This project contributed to the NHS Health Scotland 'Section 10' of the MMR discussion pack which is available at every general practitioner's practice in Scotland.

A survey of disease-specific programmes for the education and support of patients and their carers in the primary care trusts of County Durham and Tees Valley in 2006

Funded by The Primary Care College
Timescale: February - May 2006

Disease-specific programmes are bridging primary, acute and community-based care for a large number of people. A large part of caring for people with chronic diseases involves monitoring systems, controlling pain and using strategies to prevent the illness from getting worse. Disease-specific programmes have emerged designed to empower and help individuals manage their own chronic conditions.

This scoping exercise identified the extent of programmes on specified themes in the County Durham and Tees Valley area, examined their characteristics and explored the potential for accreditation for patients 'graduating' from such programmes.


Commissioning an evaluation

If you think that you or your organisation would like to commission an evaluation, we are happy to discuss your requirements to tailor and design an evaluation to best suit the questions you want answers to.

The main purpose of evaluation is to examine particular programmes, interventions or innovations and to determine the extent to which they have met their goals or objectives.

Previous clients have found it helpful to think about the questions below, as it enabled them to have a clearer idea of the purpose of carrying out an evaluation:

  • How will an evaluation benefit our organisation?
  • Is it a requirement of our funding body? If so, what do they want to know from the evaluation?
  • How has our intervention benefited our client population? Have we any lessons to learn?
  • What have we done well or not so well?
  • Can we improve on any areas?

We need to find out enough information to understand your business or service and create a bespoke evaluation which fits your needs.

If you are a small local organisation commissioning research for the first time, the process of commissioning evaluation might be something like this:

  • Think clearly about what aspects of your work you want to evaluate
  • Clarify your budget for the evaluation
  • Contact us by phone or email to set up a meeting
  • We will have a discussion about your requirements such as what you currently do, what the project is about, what timescale is involved, who we would need to talk to to gather evidence, whether you wish to commission a participatory style of evaluation and need interim reports or presentations
  • When the details are clear, we will write a draft proposal, timescale and budget so you can see what we propose.
  • We will meet to discuss the details and make sure you are satisfied
  • If you agree, we can proceed to carry out the evaluation on your behalf
  • You will need to sign a contract detailing the contributions of both parties
  • Depending on your organisation and what we are evaluating, we will contact the appropriate ethics committees (and research management and development committees if you are an NHS organisation). Obtaining ethical approval is can sometimes take around two months to complete. However, as we are sure you will appreciate, it is vital for us to get approval on your behalf to ensure the safety and welfare of the target population
  • Once the appropriate organisations approve the evaluation we can start
  • We will prepare any interim reports or presentations, as agreed
  • We will write the final report in a suitable format, eg paper report, DVD, Braille, additional languages. Please make sure that you state your preference at the initial stages so that this can be built into the costing
  • We can also arrange a conference for disseminating the evaluation results. Again you will need to state this in the original proposal.

Case Studies

Supporting the implementation of 'Extra Life': A Healthy Settings Approach

A health needs assessment within three large employer organisations; a review of the healthy settings literature; and a process evaluation of the early implementation and potential of 'Extra Life'.

Middlesbrough Borough Council Public Health department is pursuing a Healthy Settings approach across Middlesbrough, with a specific initial focus on three large local employer organisations: Teesside University, South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Middlesbrough College. The approach across Middlesbrough has been branded 'Extra Life'. This project is unusual in the fact that it connected three major employers across the town.

Since 2013, Extra Life has been in a developmental period, whereby the Public Health team have been working in collaboration with key players in the organisations to ensure an outcome that is 'owned' by everyone. This has included: the identification of organisational leads within sites; setting up groups and structures to aid implementation; a health needs assessment; asset mapping; and developing branding for Extra Life.

CHASE was approached to carry out a range of work to support the implementation of Extra Life. This included the undertaking of a health needs assessment in each of the three settings, to identify people's health needs and their opinions of current services in their work or study place. Survey and focus group data were collected within each site, and the findings were central to shaping the next phase of Extra Life. Key issues identified in the needs assessment led to the establishment of leadership and project groups in each site reflecting each of these 'issues'. Findings also directly influenced the development of strategy, commissioning and action plans. Extra Life represented something of a journey, with multiple actions and changes ongoing. This included both 'visible' activities and events on the ground, such as a 'Festival of Wellbeing': providing sessions, information and team challenges for staff and students across sites. Alongside this, and in line with the ethos of a settings based approach more generally, some fundamental changes were evident or planned, including strategy and policy development, joined up working, and commissioning decisions more widely.

Alongside this, a literature review and a qualitative process evaluation of the initial set-up of Extra Life were carried out. Findings in relation to the roll out of Extra Life included: the importance of conceptual clarity and raising awareness; the importance of top level and 'on the ground' buy in; the importance of establishing effective Leadership groups, structures and action plans; the importance of carrying out a needs assessment to be responsive to employee need; the need for effective monitoring and evaluation, and a sustainable model, with connectivity at its core. These findings contributed to the broader settings evidence base and aided the future implementation of Extra Life both within these three organisations, and other organisations that have subsequently become involved.

Community Agents' Project: Evaluating an initiative introduced in Redcar and Cleveland to provide support to elderly and vulnerable people living in their own homes, so as to enable them to remain independent in their own home.

In 2013 South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust undertook an initiative to create a demonstration project showing how the voluntary sector can enhance the support of vulnerable people and enable them to remain at home longer. Working with Tees Valley Rural Community Council a pilot project was developed through co production in collaboration with Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council and South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The pilot involved the appointment of three Community Agents working across the borough of Redcar and Cleveland, who would have the knowledge and skills to source fit-for-purpose and timely support to meet the social needs of elderly and vulnerable people living in the community. The primary aim was to improve the quality of care for these groups, but also to save money by reducing admissions to hospital and residential care. This initiative was innovative, both because it involved a form of intervention that was not tried and tested, but also because of the co-production model used to design and implement the project.

CHASE was commissioned by TVRCC to undertake an evaluation of this intervention. It was agreed that this would involve a range of approaches - logic modelling to assess the applicability of the original aims and objectives of the pilot, an analysis of the existing monitoring data, and a Social Return on Investment evaluation (SROI). Using the SROI we identified key stakeholders, their inputs to the project, outcomes achieved and used financial proxies to show the amount of social value for each of the stakeholder groups. It was found that for every £1 invested in the project that it achieved £7.86 in social value.

Findings of the study showed that Community Agents had a vital role to play in establishing links between statutory and voluntary services, addressing gaps in services and utilizing the voluntary sector to provide low level social support to elderly and vulnerable people. The findings also showed that the Community Agents had been successful in supporting people to live independently in their own home for longer, delayed the need for more complex care packages and reduced social isolation. It also improved the financial status of many clients by ensuring they were receiving their full entitlement to benefits.

It has been recognized that the role of the Community Agents Project fits well within both the South Tees 'Better Health' remit and with Social Prescribing. As a result the project has been funded for another year with a view to it continuing to provide services within the single point-of-access hub currently under development.


Frequently asked questions

Why evaluate?

Evaluation is not necessarily about finding out what you are doing wrong. It is often about finding out what you are doing right and seeing how best practice can be promoted throughout an organisation.

Depending on who you are, you might need to do an evaluation for a funding body.

I think we need to evaluate our programme or project. What do I need to do?

You need to decide what the purpose of the evaluation is. Is it to gain a better understanding of your project? Is it a criteria for your funding body?

I need to develop a proposal for an evaluation before taking to steering group - do you have a pro forma for an evaluation proposal?

No. Proposals vary according to their audience. Much depends on the level of detail and rigour that you need and can pay for. Consider if your steering group will need a full proposal which will include methodologies etc before commissioning an evaluation. Or do they need a broad and brief statement of the problem before they decide that this issue needs evaluating? If it is the latter then our evaluation team will work with you on deciding the methodologies.

Are you able to come to our steering group to present your findings?

We will be more than happy to come and present the findings of the evaluation to your steering group. Please make let us know at the initial briefing.

I'm not sure what type of evaluation is best for me. What should I do?

Don't worry - that is what we are here for. We will able to advise you as to the best type of evaluation or research for you and your service users or clients.

Where are you based?

We are based at Teesside University, Middlesbrough, UK. However, we work across the whole of the UK.

How much will it cost?

Each evaluation is different. Costs depend on the type of evaluation, size and timescale. We are happy to give you an approximate estimate.

The Centre operates on a commercial basis.

Can you support self evaluation or internal evaluation carried out by our own workers?

Yes, one of our consultants may be able to work with you. We are happy to see if we can accommodate your requirements.

We don't have much money. Do you have a student that can carry out a quick evaluation?

As we are part of Teesside University, we have access to many students. Depending on your area, we may be able to put you in contact with the appropriate academic teaching staff.

Can I get free advice about evaluation?

As we are part of the university we need to operate commercially but, depending on how complex your query is, we may be able to help.

Why choose CHASE?

We are a multi-disciplinary team of friendly, highly-skilled and qualified professionals with many years of experience. As we are part of Teesside University, we can call on experts from many different fields and backgrounds. We can you with a wide professional background and knowledge which will enhance your evaluation. We focus on health and social issues across a variety of policy contexts.

The team includes very experienced researchers and evaluators in health and social care with experience in both academia and practice.

We are able to create a bespoke evaluation design to suit you needs.

We have a strong commitment to working ethically and within the parameters of the Data Protection Act and comply with all child protection procedures. All our staff have been CRB checked.

We would like to raise the profile of the need for evaluation in our organisation. Can you help?

Yes. We are able to provide evaluation training and can tailor a package for your own needs.

Alternatively, you can come to one of our seminars. More details about our events

If you would like to join our mailing list for future events and seminars, email