Research and Innovation

Last updated: 31 August 2023

Research Banner 1

Research and Innovation


Medical Researchers plan and conduct experiments and analyse results, with the aim of increasing scientific knowledge on topics related to medicine. They may also use this knowledge to develop new drugs or medical products.

A day in the life

Medical research and development is a long process (particularly drug development) and some researchers never see a successful product go to market. Therefore, you need to be motivated by long-term goals. Other useful skills include:

  • planning
  • organising
  • teamwork
  • numerical and statistical analysis
  • communication  

Medical charities rely heavily on generating funding for research, so experience of writing grant applications can also be valuable in this sector.

For more information regarding joining our team, please submit a form through the ‘Contact us’ page or contact the Recruitment team, who are more than happy to help, on 02392 2860​​​​​​​00 ext. 6577 or email 

Research Testimonial 1

My story

Sharon Court

Patient & Public Involvement Facilitator, Research & Innovation Department


What made you become a PPI Facilitator? Truth be told, I was on the look-out for a flexible, part-time role which suited my skills. Since starting in this job (I started in Feb 2019) I’ve discovered that it suits me *really* well, but I’m not sure I would have thought to consider a role in the NHS before! I’d always assumed you had to have some knowledge or experience in clinical care

How did you become a PPI Facilitator? My background is in youth & children’s work. I’m a qualified teacher and youth worker with over 30 years experience, working with every age group. I worked for ten years as a freelancer, designing and delivering creative community engagement projects with organisations such as Portsmouth City Council, the University of Portsmouth and Portsmouth Cathedral. Over the years I’ve built up a lot of community connections and I’ve brought those connections into this context. I quickly came to realise that the skills I had been using in my freelance work, were well suited to a healthcare environment – it was simply a matter of translation from one context to another.

What do you do on a day to day basis? No two days are the same, which I like very much! My work has on-going, longer term projects such as supporting and developing the research volunteer groups and promoting research among colleagues and the general public. And then there are short-term time-limited projects which this year has involved focussed work with ethnic communities to address vaccine hesitancy and supporting Urgent Public Studies (COVID-19) Outside of the pandemic, I also organise public events and information campaigns. I liaise with staff across the hospital and the wider community, helping to make connections that can do the best work.

Why did you choose PHU? Well, in a sense they chose me, but having worked here for a while, I like being part of a team and I like being able to make a tangible difference to people through the combination of my skills and experience. I’m the only person in the entire Trust with this role, which is both exciting and ever so slightly intimidating sometimes!

What do you enjoy about being a PPI Facilitator? As I mentioned before, I like being part of a team, but I also like being able to work autonomously. My role allows for flexible working, which sometimes involves evening or weekend work, but it also means I can adjust my hours if needed, which is great for childcare. I like being able to use my skills to help people make the best of themselves and their circumstances, and this role is very much about facilitating: seeing opportunities and developing them to the best of their potential.

Career plans and advice for others - Unlike other roles within the NHS, there are a lot of ways into this space: a background or experience in Communications or media is useful; people skills and group work is useful; creative problem solving, being able to manage your time well and working independently are all attributes which are useful for this role – and you can find these skills in lots of other places too! Training and further resources are available to help develop your skills and understanding but the one thing you don’t necessarily need is a clinical background. This role asks you to put yourself in the patient’s shoes and imagine what they might want and need to know - coming in with ‘fresh eyes’ can be one of the greatest strengths of this job!