Patient information awards

The BMA PLG (patient liaison group) patient information awards encourage excellence in the production and dissemination of accessible, well-designed and clinically balanced patient information.

Location: UK
Audience: All doctors
Updated: Friday 25 September 2020
BMA library article illustration of a book
Applications to the awards are open

How to enter

Online applications for the 2021 awards are now open and will close on Monday 30 November.

The awards encourage excellence in the production and dissemination of accessible, well-designed and evidence-based patient information.

Applications submitted to the suspended 2020 round are still eligible and will be considered for the 2021 awards.

Applicants may also submit new applications for resources published in 2020. Additional information is being sent out to all those who have already applied this year.

Apply for the 2021 awards

Register as an applicant

Please complete and submit an online entry form for each resource you enter.

Award winners will be announced in May 2021.

In line with our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint, we will only be considering digital resources.

Please read the conditions of entry before completing the application.

Conditions of entry
  1. The awards are open to all UK producers of consumer health information.
  2. All titles must have been published in the two years preceding the year of the current Awards (The 2021 Awards is for resources produced in 2018, 2019 and up to November 2020).
  3. Resources which do not meet the mandatory criteria will be judged to be ineligible.
  4. Resources may not be re-entered in subsequent years unless they have been revised.
  5. Subsequent versions of resources which have won special awards cannot be entered again although revised versions of resources which have been commended or highly commended can be entered.
  6. All resources must be available in the United Kingdom.
  7. Resources must be available online.
  8. Resources must not contain a significant authorial or editorial contribution from a current member of BMA or BMJ staff.
  9. A separate entry form must be completed for each resource, including details of its intended readership and educational aims.
  10. There is a limit of up to five eight different resources for each organisation.

For further information on the competition and for details about becoming a reviewer, please telephone 020 7383 6614 or email [email protected] 

How the awards are judged

The first six criteria relate to important criteria about the methodology:

  • have health professionals and appropriate experts been involved in developing this resource?
  • have users been involved in developing this resource?
  • has the applicant listed the references or sources of information (in entry form or in resource) used in developing the resource?
  • was the resource published in the last two years?
  • how the resource is disseminated
  • how the resource is evaluated.

The reviewer will be asked to answer 'yes' or 'no' to the questions above.

Answering the questions

If they answer 'yes', then they will also be asked to rate how well the resource achieves the criteria. They will be asked to rate it as either:

  • excellent
  • good
  • adequate.

Following this a score will be given. Guidance is provided to help them make these decisions.

The questions asked in this part of the second part of the review relate to the resource itself. Almost all of the questions ask for a 'yes' or 'no' response. The reviewer will be able to leave comments.

Where the question may not be applicable to the resource then the reviewer can choose 'not applicable'. Guidance is available for each question which demonstrates what the question is asking for and may also highlight good practice in that particular area.

When the questions have been answered

When all the questions have been answered a score for the resource will appear and the reviewer is invited to choose a grade (based on the score and their own assessment).

The reviewer will be asked to leave their overall comments for the BMA judging panel. These will be seen by the BMA panel only and will not be read by the applicant. The reviewer's comments will be used by the judging panel to decide whether a resource should be given an award or shortlisted.

The final section allows the reviewer to leave their overall comments for the applicant. We request that they are constructive in any criticism and discuss positive attributes as well as any areas where the resource could be improved. These comments will be given anonymously to applicants if they have requested feedback.

Award categories

Children

This award is for resources which are aimed at children or adolescents or their carers, or it could be a training resource for professionals who work in this area. We wish to recognise originality in subject matter of design.

Decision making

This award is for resources which facilitate the patient decision making process. This should be the main intention of the resource and the resource should show clearly how this is to be achieved. We have made this special award in order to recognise the importance of improving patients' ability to take responsibility for their health.

Easy read

This award is for resources which offer accessible information for groups with learning disabilities . We have made this special award in order to recognise the importance of improving access to health by marginalised groups. The award might be for either good practice in meeting an established need or for an innovative resource which meets the needs of an under-represented group.

Equality, diversity and inclusion

This award is for resources which support the BMA's diversity monitoring and delivery of programmes aiming to improve under-representation of defined groups.

Ethics

This award is for resources which deal with ethical aspects of patient care such as issues surrounding mental capacity, genetic screening, confidentiality, etc. It can be aimed either at the individuals themselves or their carers, or could be a training resource for professionals who work in this area.

Innovation

This new award is for a resource which presents or disseminates information in a new or original way which increases its impact. The winner of this award will score highly in terms of its content but will also demonstrate an innovative approach to its production or dissemination.

This might include innovative use of technology (such as web animation or interactive web devices) to maximise engagement with the intended user or innovative use of technology (such as PDFs, intranets or podcasts) to maximise the dissemination of the resource. It could also be a conventional printed resource.

We have made this special award in order to recognise the importance of the measurement of impact. You will need to demonstrate clearly what you consider to be innovative about your resource and show how you have evaluated its impact.

Long term conditions

This award is for resources which meet the information needs of patients with long term conditions (chronic conditions). A long term condition is one that cannot be cured but can be managed through medication and/or therapy: e.g. asthma, diabetes, coronary heart disease, some mental health conditions or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (amongst others).

We have made this a special award because of the high incidence of chronic conditions and in order to recognise the importance of patient information in its effective management.

Screening

This award is for resources which demonstrate good practice in screening or preventive strategies. This award will be made to resources which cover both screening and testing guidance or which cover the broader area of health prevention.

Self-care

This award is for resources which promote healthy living or looking after yourself in a healthy way (e.g. brushing your teeth or self treating minor ailments). We have made this a special award in order to recognise the importance of the patients' role in managing their health.

Trusts

This award is for resources which are produced by NHS Trusts. We wish to acknowledge the important work which is done by Trusts in meeting the local information needs of patients.

User engagement

This award is for resources in which users played an integral role in the creation of the resource. It considers factors such as the input of users in areas such as scope, design and content, or in guiding the resource's continuing development and engagement with its users.

It examines the established channels through which user input is solicited/encouraged, appraised and integrated into the resource and the steps taken to ensure that users of different ages, backgrounds and perspectives provide input.

Wellbeing

This award is presented in consultation with the BMA's well-being support services unit which oversees nationwide support services for doctors and medical students. The BMA have a range of services which offer advice at difficult or stressful times and this award seeks to encourage resources in this area.

Young adults

This award is for resources which are aimed at young adults, or it could be a training resource for professionals who work in this area. We wish to recognise originality in subject.