Laura was appointed as a Senior Research Fellow in 2012, and became a Principal Research Fellow in 2018. By background, Laura is a sociologist and a health services researcher. She undertook her doctoral research at the University of Leeds and was awarded her PhD (Sociology) in 2010. Laura’s skills are mainly around qualitative methodology and analysis, process evaluations and trial management. Laura is currently study manager for several research projects about patient safety, patient experience and positive deviance.
Laura’s most discussed and talked about paper was published in February 2017 in Social Science & Medicine (available here). It currently has an Altmetric score of over 180. The paper proposes a conceptual framework to understand why ward staff struggle to make improvements based on patient feedback. Laura is the author of over 35 peer reviewed publications and co-applicant on four NIHR grant applications totalling £2.8m of research income. Laura is a panel member of the Yorkshire and North East Research for Patient Benefit Advisory Board and an Associate Editor for the journal Trials.
Laura spent the first six years of her career conducting research for the NHS, with injecting drug users and prisoners. This entailed both in depth qualitative research and several randomised controlled trials comparing opiate detoxification agents. For three years she worked on two qualitative health research projects at the University of York.
Applied health services research, medical sociology, innovative qualitative analysis, conceptual framework generation, patient experience, patient safety, implementation science, improvement science.
- Lawton R, Sheard L, Marsh C, Dexter M, O’Hara J, Slater B, Riley A, Walsh P, Chamberlain P. (2015) “Understanding and enhancing how hospital staff learn from and act on patient experience data” £385, 324, NIHR Health Services and Delivery Programme
Hardicre N, Birks Y, Murray J, Sheard L, Hughes L, Heyhoe J, Cracknell A, Lawton R. (2017) Partners at Care Transitions (PACT): exploring older peoples’ experiences of transitioning from hospital to home in the UK: protocol for an observation and interview study of older people and their families to understand patient experience and involvement in care at transitions. BMJ Open, 7:e018054. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2017-018054
McCaughan D, Sheard L, Cullum N, Dumville J, Chetter I. (2017). Patients perceptions and experiences of living with a surgical wound healing by secondary intention: A qualitative study. International Journal of Nursing Studies 77, 29-38
Sheard L, Jackson C, Lawton R. (2017). How is success achieved by individuals innovating for patient safety and quality in the NHS? BMC Health Services Research, 17:640
Sheard L, Marsh C, O’Hara J, Armitage G, Wright J, Lawton R. (2017). Exploring how ward staff engage with the implementation of a patient safety intervention: a UK-based qualitative process evaluation. BMJ Open 7(7):e014558.
Scantlebury A, Watt I, Sheard L, Wright J, Adamson J. (2017). Implementing electronic records in NHS secondary care organisations in England. British Medical Bulletin. 1/9.
Scantlebury A, Sheard L, Watt I, Cairns P, Wright J, Adamson J. (2017) Exploring the implementation of an electronic record into a maternity unit: a qualitative study using Normalisation Process Theory. BMC Med Inform Decis Mak. 17(1):4.
Sheard L, Marsh C, O’Hara J, Armitage G, Wright J, Lawton R. (2017). The Patient Feedback Response Framework – Understanding why UK hospital staff find it difficult to make improvements based on patient feedback: A qualitative study. Social Science & Medicine, 178, 19-27
Lawton R, O’Hara J, Sheard L, Armitage G, Cocks K, Buckley H, Corbacho B, Reynolds R, Marsh C, Moore S, Watt I, Wright J. (2017) Can patient involvement improve patient safety? A cluster randomized control trial of the Patient Reporting and Action for a Safe Environment (PRASE) Intervention. BMJ Quality & Safety, DOI: 1136/bmjqs-2016-005570
O’Hara J, Lawton R, Armitage G, Sheard L, Marsh C, Cocks K, McEachan R, Reynolds C, Watt I, Wright J. (2016). The Patient Reporting and Action of a Safe Environment (PRASE) intervention: a feasibility study. BMC Health Services Research DOI: 10.1186/s12913-016-1919-
Clarke A, Adamson J, Watt I, Sheard L, Cairns P, Wright J. (2016). “The impact of electronic records on patient safety: a qualitative study” BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making 16:62
Clarke A, Adamson J, Sheard L, Cairns P, Watt I, Wright J. (2015). “Implementing electronic patient record systems (EPRs) into England’s acute, mental health and community care Trusts: a mixed methods study” BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making 15:85
Lawton R, O’Hara J, Sheard L, Reynolds C, Cocks K, Armitage G, Wright J. (2015). “Can staff and patient perspectives on hospital safety predict harm-free care? An analysis of staff and patient survey data and routinely collected outcomes” BMJ Quality & Safety 0, 1-8
Sheard L, O’Hara J, Armitage G, Wright J, Cocks K, McEachan R, Watt I, Lawton R. (2014). “Evaluating the PRASE patient safety intervention – a multi-centre, cluster trial with a qualitative process evaluation: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial” BMC Trials 15: 420
[Edited book]. Wright N, Gerada C & Sheard L. (eds) (2013) RCGP Guide to the Management of Substance Misuse in Primary Care. London, RCGP.