Multiple long-term conditions

Seven new projects explore long-term conditions in urban places

15 November 2019
3 min read

We are funding new research to explore the interaction of social circumstances and health in inner-city London.

The seven research areas will focus on people with long-term conditions. We want to better understand how and why working-age people progress – sometimes rapidly – from one long-term condition to many. Crucially, we want to know what can be done to slow this down.

The research projects will explore a breadth of topics including:

  • The value of online peer support in preventing depression in people with long-term conditions
  • Understanding how multiple conditions develop among Black African people living with HIV
  • Looking at the relationship between multiple long-term conditions and employment

With King’s Health Partners, we run the Multiple Long-Term Conditions Challenge Fund. This has funded all seven research projects.


Understanding the social circumstances of ill health

We know people’s economic, social and housing situations can contribute to poor health. We also know there are many places effective health interventions can take place – not just healthcare settings. 

Some of the proposals looked at spaces like homelessness services, food banks and workplaces. These are all places where changes can improve the health of people living with long-term conditions.

As well as exploring different settings, some proposals explored conditions as ‘trigger points’. These trigger points lead to the progression from one to many long-term conditions. For example, our evidence suggests that depression plays a key role in the development of further long-term conditions.

We're encouraged to see high-quality projects on the wider social determinants of long-term conditions. Tackling these will prevent 10 - 15 years of avoidable ill health, experienced by people living in deprived areas of our place today.

Barbara Reichwein, Programme Director for multiple long-term conditions
Barbara Reichwein Programme Director for multiple long-term conditions

Research projects we have funded

In total, we received 41 research proposals. Proposals were reviewed across two rounds by a multi-disciplinary panel of experts, chaired by Professor Kevin Fenton, Strategic Director of Place and Wellbeing at Southwark Council. 

The research projects will run over 24 months until June 2021, with a half-way check-in point. The full list of research we’re supporting is as follows:

  • Mental and physical multimorbidity patterns among working-age ethnic minority adults in Lambeth. Led by Dr Alex Dregan, Department of Psychological Medicine, King’s College London
  • Determinants of multiple long-term conditions in Black African Communities with HIV. Led by Dr Frank Post, Department of Sexual Health/HIV, King’s College Hospital
  • Online peer support for preventing comorbid depression in people with long-term conditions. Led by Dr Lauren Rayner, Department of Psychological Medicine, King’s College London
  • Evaluation of Cardiovascular Risk Tools in people living with HIV. Led by Dr Anthony Wierzbicki, Department of Chemical Pathology, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust
  • Determinants of MLTCs among young adults with mental disorders: a data linkage study. Led by Dr Brendon Stubbs, Department of Psychological Medicine, King’s College London
  • The inter-relationship between long term conditions and employment. Led by Dr Sharon Stevelink, Department of Psychological Medicine, King’s College London
  • Patterns of Multiple Long-Term Vascular Conditions in Lambeth and Southwark. Led by Dr Abdel Douiri, School of Population Health & Environmental Sciences, King’s College London

Are you a researcher interested in multiple long-term conditions? Find out more about our funding.