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12 May 2022

REF2021: Faculty's research tops UK rankings

Research from the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care, alongside allied health colleagues at King’s College London, has topped UK rankings in the latest Research Excellence Framework results (REF2021) announced today.

A King's College London flag

The REF is the UK’s system for assessing the quality of research in higher education institutions. The results from REF 2021 highlight the combined strength and impact of applied health research at King’s and demonstrate that King’s research is world-leading in this area.

The Faculty submitted 107 high-quality research papers and 5 impact case studies as part of the Unit of Assessment 3 (UAO3) submission to the REF, alongside submissions from colleagues in Dentistry, Pharmacy and Life Course Sciences at King’s.

Out of the 89 submissions made by UK universities to UOA3, King’s was first for overall research rated 4* (the highest possible mark), first for research outputs with 92.1% of outputs being rated 3* or 4*, first for impact rated 4* with 86.4% of impact case studies rated 4*, and first for Grade Point Average and Power*. King’s UAO3 submission also received 100% for environment, along with 12 other institutions. 

These results highlight King’s outstanding strengths in applied and allied healthcare and the vital impact of nursing, midwifery and palliative care on society. I’m hugely proud of the excellent work done by our Faculty and delighted to be part of such a rich research environment at King’s.

Professor Irene Higginson OBE, Executive Dean, Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care

The Faculty is responding to areas of massive future need for changing societies and the impact case studies submitted cover a wide range of research, including, novel breathlessness therapies that could benefit 75 million people worldwide, innovations in medical devices for wound care that are providing better quality of life for people with long-term health conditions, transforming lives by increasing access to rehabilitation services and new trials and outcome measures that are helping to advance access to palliative care for people across the globe

Active patient and public involvement is instilled across the Faculty’s research, and the submission highlighted the pioneering Experience-based Co-design project enabling patients and staff to work together. The Faculty also has an award-winning online Patient & Public involvement Forum (PPI) at the Cicely Saunders Institute of Palliative Care, Policy & Rehabilitation.

As a carer for my mother, I was invited to share my lived experience and become a patient representative to help design and support on research studies and on new health trials which have been clinically proven to improve health and care needs of patients. I learned so much from my involvement and engaged with a broad range of communities in public involvement.

Rashmi Kumar, PPI participant

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Image of Irene Higginson

Executive Dean, Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care