New grant successes for Psychology and Health

The School of Psychological Sciences and Health are delighted to announce their three most recent grant successes for October 2019.

Further details below!

Project title: Non-adherence to hormonal therapy in breast cancer survivors: a systematic review and qualitative analysis of the role of sleep disturbance

Grantholder(s): Dr Leanne Fleming, Dr Diane Dixon, Dr Megan Crawford

Funding source: Chief Scientist Office, £29,000, 2019-2020.

Summary: Women with hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer are prescribed hormone therapy for 5-10 years after breast cancer surgery to minimise the risk of breast cancer recurrence. Research indicates that around 50% of women prescribed hormone therapy do not adhere to their prescription. In most cases, this is because of unpleasant side-effects from the medication. Sleep disturbance is one of the most common side-effects of hormone therapy, but its influence upon adherence has not yet been examined. We will explore the experience of poor sleep and its impact on adherence to hormone therapy in order to consider whether improving sleep would result in improved adherence. 

Project title: Improving older adults' vaccination uptake

Grantholder(s): Dr Lynn Williams

Funding source: Chief Scientist Office, £25,000, 2019-2020.

Summary: In Scotland, older adults (aged 65+) are offered flu, pneumococcal, and shingles vaccinations via the NHS. These vaccinations prevent illness and life-threatening complications in older adults, but uptake is low and decreasing. Our future research will identify the reasons for this, so that we can design interventions to increase vaccination coverage and improve older adults' health. However, existing measures of vaccine hesitancy, measuring barriers to vaccination, were developed with younger adults. Before future use, we therefore first need to ensure that these measures are valid and reliable in older adults and, if not, develop them for this population. 

Project title: Using behavioural science to improve the effectiveness of telephone-assisted CPR

Grantholder(s): Dr Diane Dixon

Funding source: Chief Scientist Office, £31,000, 2019-2020

Summary: The majority of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests are witnessed by a bystander but only 56% of victims receive life-saving cardiopulmonary resuscitation. When the bystander is supported over the telephone by the emergency dispatcher (T-CPR), CPR is more likely, but even then, 25% of bystanders do not intervene. Performing CPR is a behaviour, therefore, behavioural science can be used to improve CPR theory to identify; 1) modifiable (cognitive and emotional) barriers to the performance of T-CPR and 2) opportunities, within current T-CPR training/instructions to overcome those barriers.