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26 March 2024

The NIHR Policy Research Unit in Health and Social Care Workforce Programme of Work

The Policy Research Unit announces seven new studies commencing in 2024

Logo of a research unit

In the context of ongoing challenges to the recruitment, retention, and motivation of around three million staff employed in health and social care, the NIHR Policy Research Unit in Health and Social Care Workforce in the Policy Institute at King’s College London has announced its programme of work as it sets out on its next five years (2024-28).

Developed in consultation with the Department of Health and Social Care, this programme is sensitive to the importance of workforce organisation and management to the delivery of high quality services as the health and care needs of the population change, and as technological and medical advances provide new opportunities to address such needs. The Programme has been framed by key policy initiatives, for example, the NHS England Long Term Workforce Plan (2023) and the DHSC White Paper People at the Heart of Care: Adult Social Care Reform (2021).

Studies starting in 2024

(with Principal Investigators)

  1. Evaluating the Implementation of Apprenticeships in Health and Social Care (Kalpa Kharicha)
  2. Career Development in Adult Social Care (Nicole Steils)
  3. NHS Careers Across Occupations (Elaine Kelly)
  4. New Roles in Health and Social Care (Annette Boaz)
  5. Widening Participation in the Healthcare Workforce (Kritika Samsi)
  6. The Social Care Workforce: Recruitment, Retention and Care User Health Outcomes (George Stoye)
  7. The Management of Sickness Absence by NHS Trusts (Caroline Norrie)

We have drawn together these project profiles into a single 15-page pdf.

On the blog

Professor Ian Kessler introduces the studies in the programme on the Unit blog

Getting in touch

  • For further details on the projects and in case you have any interest in participating, whether in an institutional or personal capacity, please feel free to contact us via the Unit email – – or email study Principal Investigators directly.
  • As part of the programme of work we will be setting up a consultative Workforce Panel, comprising individuals from different NHS and care roles. If you are interested in joining this panel, please do contact Unit Director Professor Annette Boaz:

Acknowledgement and disclaimer

This research is funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Policy Research Programme (NIHR206121 – NIHR Policy Research Unit in Health and Social Care Workforce). The views expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.

In this story

Professor Annette Boaz

Professor of Health and Social Care


Professor of Public Policy and Management

Kalpa Kharicha

Senior Research Fellow

Steils 160

Research Fellow


Senior Research Economist, Institute for Fiscal Studies

Samsi 160

Senior Research Fellow

George Stoye-160

Associate Director, Institute for Fiscal Studies

Norrie 160

Senior Research Fellow