Our Research

Our final survey has now closed. Thank you to everyone who completed it.


Burn injuries affect 11 million people world-wide and 140,000 patients in England each year. Around 70% of burns happen in the lower income countries such as in Africa and South-East Asia. Many patients with burns have difficulties which affect their daily lives, such as walking, dressing, poor mental health and the challenges of living with scars. Burn care can be expensive when it involves operations, long hospital stays, and scar treatment. Despite the importance of these issues, there is limited research evidence available to inform hospital staff how to make treatment decisions. Without strong evidence, staff can use their own preferences and may do what they have always done. This limits progress, results in care that varies between hospitals, and means patients may not get the best results.

To get the best evidence for clinicians to make decisions, we need to make sure research studies ask the most important questions. To find this out, we need to know which unanswered clinical questions, patients and healthcare professionals think are the most important and will most improve recovery.

We are working with the James Lind Alliance (https://www.jla.nihr.ac.uk/) to find out which top ten questions we currently don’t have answers for because we need more evidence. We will firstly ask patients, carers, and healthcare professionals from different countries around the world (especially those from countries where most burns happen) what they think the most important unanswered questions are. We will do this using an online survey and through interviews. Secondly, we will ask patients and healthcare professionals to rank these questions according to which ones they think are the most and least important. Thirdly, we will take the top 18 most important questions to a meeting with patients and hospital staff to agree the top-ten. These top-ten research questions will be used as information for research funders and researchers so that studies can focus on the issues that are most important to patients and clinicians. In this way, this project will aim to find answers to the most important research questions in burn care across the world so people can make the best decisions about care based on evidence.