Improvement research Improvement research, also known as improvement science, is about finding out how to improve and make changes in the most effective way


Improvement research is a crucial strand of the work that we do at the Health Foundation. It involves systematically examining the methods and factors that best help to facilitate quality improvement.

Our recent work and content on this topic is listed below.

Sustainable improvement: growing a greener NHS

Newsletter feature
28 October 2021

How does the improvement work we fund contribute to achieving NHS net zero? 

Green shoots: creating the conditions for health care innovation to flourish

14 September 2021

How will the four new Adopting Innovation hubs cultivate the optimal environment for change to be implemented effectively, efficiently and sustainably? Laura Semple and Richard Stubbs share their reas...

Determining the skills needed by frontline NHS staff to deliver quality improvement

Journal article
11 August 2021

Skills needed by NHS staff to drive improvement of care.

The road to hell is paved with good intentions

Journal article
27 July 2021

A cohort study examining the experience of applying for national data for linkage and suggestions for improvement.

Webinar: Tech and NHS recovery – what you should know

25 June 2021

How can technological innovation help speed the recovery of the NHS and sustain high quality care in the post-pandemic period?

Patients and machines: does technology help or hinder empathy and person-centred care?

9 June 2021

Tim Horton and Tom Hardie explore empathy and person-centredness in the context of technology and AI in health care. Where should the boundaries lie between humans and machines?

Delivering organisation-wide improvement: why playing the long game matters

25 May 2021

Bryan Jones reflects on the importance of taking a long-term approach to organisation-wide improvement and outlines a new NHS Providers project to support this.

Insights from the pandemic: what can be learned about service transformation?

Newsletter feature
29 April 2021

A new report from Q explores the role of improvement in delivering rapid service change during the pandemic. We summarise the learning and look at how we can build on the progress made.  

Anchors in a storm

Long read

COVID-19 has galvanised many institutions, including the NHS, into more purposefully influencing local social and economic conditions. Here we identify nine lessons from conversations with anchor lead...

Are multidisciplinary teams an effective tool to reduce emergency hospital activity?

26 November 2020

New analysis from the Improvement Analytics Unit has found that multidisciplinary teams may increase emergency hospital use, at least in the short term.

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Q is an initiative connecting people with improvement expertise across the UK.

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