Posts in ‘Funding from STIRF’ category

Proposed research on why Somalis do not access sexual health services in UK

Posted on 23rd March 2014 by · No comments

STIRF had agreed to fund a project by Steve Wordsworh and colleagues from the Faculty of Health, Birmingham City University  investigating the reasons why Somali refugees appear not to access sexual heaalth services. Below is a brief description of the propsed project:

In the United Kingdom there is an established and growing refugee population that have arrived from Somalia. Despite this, the Somali population are often not included in ‘official’ statistics largely because the community is rarely recognised as a distinct ethnic category.

Because of this we often unaware of the health or social needs of those who arrive in the UK from a Somalia background, therefore it is inevitable that the support and needs of this community is often sadly neglected. So despite a very real need for help and support the uptake of health services is very low.

We are particular concerned with low access to sexual health service from of our local Somali community in Birmingham. So building on expertise in both working with the Somali community and in sexual health, staff from BCU are planning to undertake a study that seeks to explore just what exactly are the sexual health needs of Somali refugees, importantly we will be seeking to gather their views and perspectives directly from the community itself, we aim to found out  what they know about sexual health services, the challenges that may prevent them taking up these services and how services could be adapted to best support their needs.

Furthermore, it is our intention that that results from this research can be used to inform service provision by identifying barriers to access and any opportunities that may help to overcome them.

STIRF: new projects approved

Posted on 23rd November 2012 by · No comments

In this year’s funding round we received six applications. After sending them for external peer review by experts, the Scientific Committee approved two projects for funding in 2013 which was submitted to the Trustees.

Project 1Chlamydia trachomatisis the most common sexually transmitted infection effecting young people in the UK. It infects one in ten of all women aged 15-25 and can cause serious long term complications such as pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility. According to the Health Protection Agency in 2011 in England and Wales 147,594 infections were diagnosed in 15 to 24 year olds.

Recent evidence for emergence of resistance to the commonly used antibotics used in eradicating chlamydia is very worrying. We are delighted to fund Emma Hathorn as part of a multi-centre study to evaluate the incidence of  chlamydia resistance in people attending a clinic for sexually transmitted infections.

Antimicrobial resistance in Chlamydia trachomatis: is it a reality? STIRF-022


Project 2: There is increasing focus on involving patients and what they perceive are their actual needs when delivering clinical services in the NHS. This is particularly important in the fast developing field of HIV where new management strategies and new treatments take place within the background of shrinking funding. These clearly call for new ways of delivering these services more efficiently as well as more effectively. It is with this in mind that STIRF decided to fund the nurse-led project by Lucy Land that is taking steps to objectively define these priorities as seen from the HIV-infected patients perspective.

Development of a weighting scale to evaluate the relative importance of items in a validated HIV patient satisfaction questionnaire. STIRF-020

This study aims to refine a questionnaire they developed and validated with the help of HIV-infected patients to find issues that are more important and therefore need to be prioritised in development of HIV services.

Thanks to all the researchers who submitted and to the reviewers who gave their valuable time for free.

How to apply for research funds from STIRF

Posted on 23rd November 2011 by · 1 comment

Application for Research Funds from STIRF

Conditions and regulations

Sexually Transmitted Infections Research Foundation (STIRF) was set up to pump prime research projects relating to the epidemiology, pathophysiology, management, and health care delivery of sexually transmitted infections and HIV in the East and West Midlands. In 2010 the North East and North West Regions were added.

Before filling the application form for funding from STIRF please read the following conditions, which should be met before applications are considered.

1. The following fields of research will be considered in relation to STIs and HIV

  • Epidemiology of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases
  • Research on HPV and other sexually transmissible malignancies
  • Health care delivery including views of clients
  • Issues relating to deprived or marginalised communities.
  • Pathophysiology of diseases and syndromes
  • Inter-relationship between diseases
  • Treatment modalities
  • Complications of treatment and co-morbidities

2. Applicants should be working in the NHS or universities within the East and West Midlands and the North East and North West Regions of the United Kingdom. Applicants from non-NHS and non-academic settings within the same geographical locations will also be considered.

3. Applicants should ensure that sponsorship of the project, including adherence to the NHS Research Governance Guidelines, is provided by the host institution.

4. Applications should not exceed £50,000 in the first year. Depending on satisfactory reports a further £25,000 may be available for the second year. Joint funding with other grant giving bodies will be considered.

5. Detailed justification for costs should be made on the application form

6. Overhead costs be should be limited to 15% of salary costs within any proposal.

7.  Funding will be paid quarterly in arrears dependent on satisfactory progress

8. A brief (2 page) CV should be attached.

Please note that we are less likely to fund researchers who have successfully received funds from STIRF in the recent past

To apply fill download the Application form complete and send it by email with the other required documents to or post to

STIRF, c/o Dr Shahmanesh, Whittall Street Clinic, Whittall Street, Birmingham B4 6DH

Deadline for receiving applications in the 2015 round is March 31, 2015