This EPAP meeting was held at Park Farm, Hethersett to tie in with the afternoon Research Meeting to celebrate the achievements of the EPIC-Norfolk Third Health Check (3HC). Prof. Kay-Tee Khaw and Prof Nick Wareham, the EPIC-Norfolk Principal Investigators, were in attendance.
It was reported that the public engagement event held at the Forum in August 2010 was very successful and created much interest. The EPAP members who assisted with activities at the event were thanked and any suggestions on improvement were noted for future reference.
Prof. Wareham gave a vote of thanks to all EPAP members for their important contributions to the EPIC research activity during this year. The feedback from EPAP has been invaluable and this will be equally important in the preparation for the next phase of EPIC, where EPAP will be actively involved from the planning stage.
The meeting was passed over to Prof. Wareham who presented the Panel with an overview of some of the possible future EPIC activities and opinions were also sought regarding the dissemination of research information and results.
This was followed by open discussion, the overall feedback being very positive and Panel members felt that participants would be willing to continue with the study, both in the original observational study format and also with a possible change of direction.
The EPIC Participant Advisory Panel meeting was held at the Assembly House, Norwich
This meeting was held as the AGM to review the activities of EPAP during its first year. A presentation was included describing how EPAP had helped with input into the EPIC website, newsletter, public engagement activities, questionnaires, interventional studies and dissemination of study results and information to the wider audience.
Previously EPAP had discussed the possibility of intervention studies in EPIC and a review of the member responses was carried out at the beginning of this meeting. The Panel also discussed possible collaborations and reviewed the brief of one such request and Panel input will be fed back to the EPIC Management Committee.
An update was also given on the recent Science Festival activities in Cambridge. These activities will feature at the Forum in Norwich on Saturday 20 August and Panel members were given the opportunity to test out the activities on offer and provide suggestions for any improvements. Panel members also volunteered to attend the event to assist with the stand.
It was reported that there have been three participant member resignations over the past year due to other commitments and four new members have joined. Currently there is a participant membership base of twelve, with two in reserve. In addition, approximately six of the EPIC study team regularly attend Panel meetings. Additional EPIC staff are invited should an agenda item require specialist involvement.
The members in attendance felt that EPAP had evolved over the past year and that it was very re-assuring to hear that the contributions made during that time had been considered and implemented in the majority of cases.
Three new Panel members were welcomed to the meeting.
Feedback was provided from the Fun Day in the Forum held during half term (Oct 2010). This was positive and a great success with all ages, especially the ‘Great Gut Race,’ grip strength tests, and guess the portion size. Cantab memory game was also enjoyed by the children and the colouring activities for the younger children also went down well. All activities proved popular and many families attended.
EPIC are again manning a stand at the 2011 Cambridge Science Festival. There will be an EPIC stand with game show type events relating to food. These will consist of a ‘higher or lower’ card game looking at the vitamin C content of foods. There will also be a ‘supermarket sweep’ game where shopping lists will be used i.e. ‘find three green vegetables’, ‘find three items high in fibre’ etc. A checkout will be set up where the items can be scanned and the computer will tell you whether you are right. A ‘leaning tower of Pizza’ game will also be used to balance items relative to a good diet. Leader boards will be used for all activities.
Packs of collector’s cards relating to food will be given out as prizes and printed magnetic EPIC bookmarkers will also be given out. It is hoped that this event will again be brought to the Forum in Norwich later in the year.
The Senior Nutritionist from the EPIC research team - Alison McTaggart, gave an extremely interesting presentation to illustrate the background and reason behind using the EPIC food diaries in the current format. A staggering 75% of 3rd health check food diaries are being completed and returned by those participants who take them away. A question and answer session followed with many interesting questions being put by Panel members.
A presentation was then given by Nichola Dalzell, outlining some of the thoughts surrounding the future planning of EPIC data collection. The Panel members were asked to put forward their views in taking this to the next stage - all Panel members were enthusiastic about the plans.