Toward more mindful reporting of patient and public involvement in healthcare

Brett Scholz, Alan Bevan

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Understanding of the value of patient and public involvement in research has grown in recent years, but so too has uncertainty about how best to practice and how best to report such involvement in research outputs. One way proposed to report such involvement is through checklists, such as the GRIPP2, which aims to improve quality, transparency, and consistency in such reporting. We critique the unproblematised use of such a tool because of two main concerns. First, being asked to complete a GRIPP2 for a recent publication felt divisive given that the service user researcher was as much a member of the authorship team as the other researchers (whose involvement did not necessitate a checklist). Second, checklists do not actually address the power imbalances and tokenism that is rife in patient and public involvement in research. Indeed, the false sense of objectivity fostered by meeting the minimum requirements of the checklist means that researchers may not go further to engage in reflexive research practices and reporting. Rather than rote use of such checklists, we recommend mindful reflexive reporting in research outputs of patient and public involvement processes. We also recommend future iterations of the GRIPP consider (a) incorporating criteria about whether the checklist is completed by or with service user researchers or not, (b) addressing criteria that position service user research as needing to be justified, and (c) expanding the “critical perspective” element of the checklist to explicitly consider power differentials.
Original languageEnglish
Article number61
Pages (from-to)1-4
Number of pages4
JournalResearch Involvement and Engagement
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes


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