I have been a Senior Research Fellow for the Quality & Safety team since 2012. By background, I am a sociologist and a health services researcher. I undertook my doctoral research at the University of Leeds and was awarded my PhD (sociology) in 2010.
I have skills in qualitative methodology and analysis, process evaluations and trial management. I am currently study manager for several research projects about patient safety, patient experience and positive deviance. For a number of years I worked on the PRASE study (Patient Reporting and Action for a Safe Environment) which was a 33 ward cluster randomised controlled trial of a patient safety intervention. I devised the qualitative process evaluation surrounding the trial and subsequently developed a conceptual framework to understand why ward staff struggle to make improvements based on patient feedback, which was published in Social Science & Medicine (available to accessed here).
I spent the first six years of my 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 I worked on two qualitative health research projects at the University of York.
- Wright N, Gerada C & Sheard L. (eds) (2013) RCGP Guide to the Management of Substance Misuse in Primary Care. London, RCGP.
Peer reviewed publications in date order
- Sheard L, Marsh C, O’Hara J, Armitage G, Wright J, Lawton R. Exploring how ward staff engage with the implementation of a patient safety intervention: a UK-based qualitative process evaluation. BMJ open. 2017;7(7):e014558.
- Scantlebury A, Watt I, Sheard L, Wright J, Adamson J. Implementing electronic records in NHS secondary care organisations in England. British Medical Bulletin. 2017 1/9.
- Scantlebury A, Sheard L, Watt I, Cairns P, Wright J, Adamson J. Exploring the implementation of an electronic record into a maternity unit: a qualitative study using Normalisation Process Theory. BMC Med Inform Decis Mak. 2017 Jan 07;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-z
- 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. http://www.trialsjournal.com/content/15/1/420
- Sheard L, Prout H, Dowding D, Noble S, Watt I, Maraveyas A, Johnson M. Barriers to the diagnosis and treatment of venous thromboembolism in advanced cancer patients: a qualitative study. Palliative medicine. 2013 Apr;27(4):339-48.
- Sheard L, Prout H, Dowding D, Noble S, Watt I, Maraveyas A, Johnson M. (2012). “The ethical decisions UK doctors make regarding advanced cancer patients at the end of life – the perceived (in) appropriateness of anticoagulation for venous thromboembolism: A qualitative study” BMC Medical Ethics 13 (22) 4th Sept 2012
- Johnson, M. Sheard, L. Maraveyas, A. Noble, S. Prout, H. Watt, I. Dowding, D. (2012) “Diagnosis and management of people with venous thromboembolism and advanced cancer: how do doctors decide? A qualitative study” BMC Medical Informatics & Decision Making 12(1):75.
- Sheard, L. (2011) “’Anything could have happened’: Women, the night time economy, alcohol and drink spiking” Sociology 45 (4) 619–633
- Wright, N. Sheard, L. Adams, C. Rushforth, B. Harrison, W. Bound, N. Hart, R. Tompkins, C. (2011) “Comparison of methadone and buprenorphine for opiate detoxification (LEEDS trial): a randomised controlled trial” British Journal of General Practice 61, 772-780
- Tompkins, C. Wright, N & Sheard, L. (2010) “You, Me & Hep C – Making an Educational DVD for Prisoners” AIDS & Hepatitis Digest 137 1-3
- Sheard, L. Wright, N. Adams, C. Bound, N. Rushforth, B. Hart, R. & Tompkins, C. (2009) “The Leeds Evaluation of Efficacy of Detoxification Study (LEEDS) Prisons Project Study: Protocol for a randomised controlled trial comparing methadone and buprenorphine for opiate detoxification” Trials 10 (53) 14th July 2009
- Tompkins, C. Wright, N. Waterman, M. & Sheard, L. (2009) “Exploring prison buprenorphine misuse in the United Kingdom: A qualitative study of former prisoners” International Journal of Prisoner Health 5 (2) 71 – 87
- Sheard, L. Wright, N. El-Sayeh, H. Adams, C. Li, R & Tompkins, C. (2009) “The Leeds Evaluation of Efficacy of Detoxification Study (LEEDS) Prisons Project: A randomised controlled trial comparing dihydrocodeine and buprenorphine for opiate detoxification” Substance Abuse, Treatment, Prevention and Policy, 4 (1) 5th February 2009
- Sheard, L. & Tompkins, C. (2008) “Contradictions and misperceptions: An exploration of injecting practice, cleanliness, risk and partnership in the lives of women drug users” Qualitative Health Research 18 (11) 1524-1535
- Neale, J. Tompkins, C. & Sheard, L. (2008) “Barriers to accessing generic health and social care services: a qualitative study of injecting drug users” Health and Social Care in the Community 16 (2) 147-154
- Tompkins, C. Sheard, L. & Neale, J. (2008) “Methodological Reflections on Closing In-Depth Interviews with Drug Using Women” Methodological Innovations Online 2 (3)
- Sheard, L. Adams, C. Wright, N. El-Sayeh, H. Dalton, R. & Tompkins, C. (2007) “The Leeds Evaluation of Efficacy of Detoxification Study (LEEDS) Prisons Project Pilot Study: Protocol for a randomised controlled trial comparing dihydrocodeine and buprenorphine for opiate detoxification” Trials, 8 (1) 8th January 2007
- Neale, J. Sheard, L. & Tompkins, C. (2007) “Factors that help injecting drug users to access and benefit from services: A qualitative study” Substance Abuse, Treatment, Prevention and Policy, 2 (31) 30th October 2007
- Tompkins, C. Ghoneim, S. Wright, N. Sheard, L. & Jones, L. (2007) “Needle Fear Among Women Injecting Drug Users: A Qualitative Study” Journal of Substance Use; 12 (4) 281-291
- Wright, N. Tompkins, C. & Sheard, L. (2007) “Is peer injecting a form of intimate partner abuse? – A qualitative study of the experiences of women drug users” Health and Social Care in the Community 15 (5) 417-425
- Tompkins, C. Neale, J. Sheard, L. & Wright, N. (2007) “Experiences of prison among injecting drug users in England: A qualitative study” International Journal of Prisoner Health, 3 (3) 189-203.
- Wright, N. Sheard, L. Tompkins, C. Adams, C. Allgar, V. & Oldham, N. (2007) “Buprenorphine versus dihydrocodeine for opiate detoxification in primary care: a randomised controlled trial” BMC Family Practice 8 (3)
- Sheard, L. Tompkins, C. Wright, N. & Adams, C. (2006) “Non-commercial clinical trials of a medicinal product: Can they survive the current research approvals process in the United Kingdom?” Journal of Medical Ethics 32 (7) 430-434
- Sheard, L. Tompkins, C. Wright, N. & Adams, C. (2006) “Recruiting Opiate Users to a Randomised Controlled Trial in Primary Care: A Descriptive Study of GP Attitudes” Primary Health Care Research and Development 7 106-115
- Tompkins, C. Sheard, L. Wright, N. Jones, L. & Howes, N. (2006) “Exchange, Deceit, Risk and Harm: The Consequences for Women of Receiving Injections from Other Drug Users” Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy 13 (3) 281-297
- Oldham, N. Wright, N. Adams, C. Sheard, L. & Tompkins, C. (2004) “The Leeds Evaluation of Efficacy of Detoxification Study (LEEDS) Project: An open label pragmatic randomised control trial comparing the efficacy of differing therapeutic agents for primary care detoxification from either street heroin or methadone” BMC Family Practice 5(9)
- Tompkins, C. Wright, N. Sheard, L. & Allgar, V. (2003) “Associations between Migrancy, Health and Homelessness: a cross sectional study” Health and Social Care in the Community 11 (5) 446-452
- 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
- Laura has presented at over thirty conferences since 2005 to a variety of audiences. Selected presentations:
- Sheard, L. “How do staff engage with feedback from their patients about safety and quality? Lessons learned from multi-centre cluster randomised controlled trial” International Society for Quality in Healthcare (ISQua) 6th October 2014, Windsor Barra hotel, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
- Sheard, L. & Marsh, C. “I can’t do anything about that” – how does normative and structural legitimacy impact on how nursing staff act on patient feedback about quality and safety? BSA Medical Sociology Conference 11th September 2014, Aston University, Birmingham.
- Sheard, L. & Marsh, C. How can we use qualitative data to make sense of what happens in a randomised controlled trial? Applied Qualitative Health Research Symposium Day 14th May 2014, University of Newcastle
- Sheard, L. The PRASE study: using feedback from patients on hospital wards to improve patient safety, quality and experience Sheffield IHI Chapter 22nd May 2014, Sheffield Hallam University
- Sheard, L. The influence of organisational factors on doctors’ decision making TRAD Alliance conference – Clinical conundrums in cancer associated thrombosis 28th March 2013, Company of the Merchant Taylor’s, York
- Sheard, L. A qualitative exploration of women’s use of night time economy spaces, alcohol consumption and fear of drink spiking BSA Alcohol Studies Group Presentation Day. 4th December 2012, BSA Meeting Room, Imperial Wharf, London.
- Sheard, L. Researching patient and clinician relevant outcomes TRAD Alliance Inaugural Scientific Meeting 24th November 2010, Holland House hotel, Cardiff
- Sheard, L. Fright, shock, anger and other emotions: women talk about a threat to their personal safety in public space BSA Violence Against Women Seminar Day 11th February 2009, Ruskin College, Oxford
- Sheard, L. Attitudes and opinions of women drug users who are injected by other people European Society for Social Drug Research, 19th annual conference 3rd October 2008, Kossuth Klub, Budapest, Hungary
- Sheard, L. & Bound, N. The LEEDS prisons trials: findings, feasibility and implications Drug and Alcohol Misuse in the Criminal Justice System Conference 3rd April 2008, Lowry Centre, Manchester
- Sheard, L. Conducting a randomised controlled trial with drug using prisoners in the UK: The LEEDS trial European Association of Addiction Therapy Conference 11th September 2007, Palais Ferstel, Vienna, Austria
- Sheard, L. Conducting randomised controlled trials in the prison healthcare setting Sharing Good Practice in Prison Health 10th May 2006, Royal York Hotel, York
- Sheard, L. Women drug users who are injected by other people Qualitative Research and Marginalisation 3rd May 2006, University of Leicester
- Sheard, L. A qualitative exploration of the lives of women drug users who are injected by others British Sociological Association 23rd April 2006, Harrogate International Centre, Harrogate
- Neale, J. Godfrey, C. Parrott, S. Sheard, L. & Tompkins, C. (2009) “Barriers to the effective treatment of injecting drug users” in S. MacGregor (ed) Responding to Drug Misuse – Research and Policy Priorities in Health and Social Care London, Routledge