Table of contents
The goal of this document would be to provide guidelines for writing effective letters of support. The data within this guide is dependant on an research into the extent that the force or weakness of letters of support impacts peer review scores on integrated Understanding Translation (iKT) applications.
In compliance using the goals of iKT research, CIHR’s iKT program mandates that understanding-users be incorporated as partners around the following grants:
- Understanding to Action
- Understanding Synthesis
- Partnerships for Health Systems Improvement
- other CIHR programs which use the iKT model
When signing up to these grants, CIHR strongly encourages that every understanding-user applicant (such as the Nominated Principal Applicant) submit signed letters of support. Generally, there’s two kinds of letters of support:
- letters from understanding-user partners who indicate that they’ll provide financial and/or perhaps in-kind support
- letters from the person or organization that supports the concept that the study project is useful
This informative guide is aimed toward the very first kind of letter, but provides some helpful strategies for writing letters of support generally.
You will find 5 criteria to incorporate when writing letters of support:
Information on criteria
The next sections provide information regarding what to incorporate in letters of support. The details are not exhaustive, and including each detail, or different details, won’t always guarantee a effective or unsuccessful application.
Below derive from actual studies and should illustrate how each detail may be communicated inside a letter of support. The examples don’t “add up” to some complete letter, but they are rather designed to illustrate the factors.
Each example here is written as if the letter author is addressing the Nominated Principal Applicant.
Style describes how letters of support are structured and written, and really should be considered when it comes to:
When it comes to originality, letters of support ought to be personalized towards the Nominated Principal Applicant. Review committees don’t view using a template letter positively. Template letters do not let for sufficient information regarding background, relevance, impact and support.
You should explain that letters of support can be handled to:
- the Nominated Principal Applicant
- review committee
- CIHR generally.
The intent from the letter ought to be mentioned in advance (frequently it’s the first sentence of the letter).
I’m writing for the application, Dr. Smithers, for the Partnerships for Health Systems Improvement application titled: Decreasing costs and improving outcomes in the treating of venous leg ulcers.
Effective letters of support typically open with information that informs the readers concerning the letter writer’s:
- relationship towards the research study
- role within the organization
- organization as it requires the work
- professional and personal credentials
- role the letter author will fulfill within the project (for instance – Nominated Principal Applicant, Principal Understanding-User, Understanding-User, or Collaborator)
- relationship towards the Nominated Principal Applicant
- knowledge of the credentials, work and goals from the applicant
- good reputation for prior work or collaborations with applicant and/or even the team
- good reputation for prior support of research endeavors of applicant and/or even the team
- status associated with a ongoing partnerships (if relevant)
- previous participation in projects which are topically like the suggested research
- previous support of other valuable research endeavors
Because the Chief executive officer of the organization, I’ve performed a number one role in making certain that my interdisciplinary team provides outstanding choose to everyone, every single day, in each and every community locally of responsibility.
The Chair in our board would be a former Dean from the faculty of Health Sciences in the college and it has a powerful curiosity about research which has spread all through the business. Within my role within this research study I’ll be the authority on homecare and also the primary understanding-user around the team. I’ve labored with Dr. Smithers on previous high-impact projects previously. These initiatives have informed our work using the best evidence to enhance care making it less expensive.
I’m the Chief executive officer of [name of organization] and am writing for these studies project. Our mission would be to generate a seamless experience with the health system for individuals within our diverse communities, supplying equitable access, individualized care coordination and quality healthcare. We supplies a central entry way for dealing with all community nursing staff involved with leg ulcer care As a result, we’re well positioned to lead towards the project.
The interdisciplinary team brought by Dr. XXX has labored with this organization previously to supply best evidence for community care, and due to this very positive experience, we is very happy to attempt these studies project.
In ’09, we labored together to arrange an evidence-based practice and demanding evaluation skills workshop. The meeting elevated the understanding and skill in our staff to search out and apply best practice.
Relevance typically covers two areas:
- the way the research study is timely – how come it seem sensible to perform a research study such as this now?
- so how exactly does it address a necessity or perhaps a gap
- so how exactly does it develop or improves previous or current research
- how can it function as a foundation for future research initiatives
- the way the research study is relevant towards the work from the letter author and/or even the organization
- so how exactly does the study project addresses or fulfills the goals, vision, and/or mandate from the organization
- how can the letter author and/or even the organization slowly move the research results into practice (relevance and impact)
Conscious of the growing trend in England to look after leg ulcer clients in nurse-run community clinics, our Board requested Drs. Smithers and Poutine to setup and evaluate an exhibition leg ulcer service that incorporated clinic and residential care. We’re concerned that there’s still inadequate evidence about the advantages of leg ulcer clinics to warrant a big change of the sort in Canada.
The look at the success and efficiency of nurse-run leg ulcer clinics will give you information with other organizations like ours within our province along with other provincial homecare providers on how to take care of people with leg ulcers. Possibly more to the point, the research might have implications for that delivery of homecare for other health problems too.
The study questions which have been suggested with this scoping review are from the following ideas, which are particularly highly relevant to the mandate in our organization: to recognize the options every day activity that, poor coping with a chronic illness, promote health insurance and well-being to recognize the function that participating in valued activities plays in stopping or delaying chronic illness or co-morbid conditions. Although mainly centered on joint disease, the study questions are equally highly relevant to chronic illnesses.
It will help reviewers to evaluate the general impact if letter authors describe potential connection between the study project. Impact may include:
- specific details – the way the letter author and/or even the organization uses the outcomes from the research study to attain a particular finish
- general details – exactly what the results will lead towards the suggested health research subject/area
The following priority research area inside our organization would be to address methodological factors that could influence our knowledge of the social determinants of health, that is precisely the purpose of your suggested research study. Therefore will feed in to the evidence base which we use within making policy decisions about the healthiness of populations. We predict so that you can make use of the findings of the understanding synthesis project to create better decisions about staffing appliances improve quality of care.
It’s obvious from recent surveys the outcomes of public health, work-related health insurance and infection control must be strengthened in Canada. Infection control networking has become important in healthcare which project will explore methods to achieve this and also to evaluate its effect on the care system.
Reviewers assess whether partner support is suitable and sufficient. Only letter authors who’re understanding-user partners have to include information for the kind of support they and/or their organization will lead.
The extent and degree of support the letter author and/or even the organization will give you ought to be outlined when it comes to financial as well as in-kind support.
The outline from the financial support will include both:
- amount of money
- time period of support
The facts from the in-kind support will include what they are called, expertise, and titles of individuals prepared to lead, and contributions the letter author and/or organization make up to now. In-kind support may also include:
- time used on and kind of in-kind contributions
- specific tasks performed
- time volunteered
- student assistance
- space and/or equipment presented to the work
- help/mechanisms in position to facilitate distribution
- understanding-user participation to
- shape the study questions
- interpret study findings and craft messaging around them
- slowly move the research results into practice
As you can see, we will give you $20,000/year within the two year term from the project. The funds is going to be deposited right into a research account at the institution, and will also be allotted towards the KT distribution strategy, that will include the introduction of an internet site, conferences, monthly newsletters, and 2 workshops tailored for capacity building.
We’ll provide $45,000 ($15,000/three years) as with-kind support for the staff of work-related health care professionals. This can include consultations, along with the provision of work place, computers, and overhead essential to house these staff people.
This organization will give you the on-the-ground perspective as well as supply the research team with use of patient records in addition to cash as well as in-kind support. We’ve decided to reallocate existing funding support to leg ulcer clinic look after the 2 year time period of the research.
Additionally, within my capacity as understanding-user, I’ll let the distribution from the resultant policy recommendations to an array of decision-maker audiences. To satisfy this commitment, I’ll supply the following possibilities: bring they directly into discuss the findings with senior management and also the boards, and, based on our decision regarding the implications from the findings, plan a workshop with appropriate stakeholders to find out the proper way to implement the findings. We’ll also plan the proper way to disseminate the outcomes towards the broader community and facilitate ongoing dialogue inside the broader healthcare system to make sure distribution of the findings to decision makers accountable for the delivery of healthcare services.
We will have fun playing the project within the following ways: refinement from the research questions help in finding relevant literature take part in focus groups to assist clarify the problem and just what must be done.
Up to now, my staff has had three conferences using the researchers discussing the grant proposal and just how we may interact collaboratively. We developed the job plan appended towards the grant proposal using the researchers.
Characteristics of strong letters
The overall objective of instructions of support would be to provide substantive specifics of the suggested partnership, along with the means and suitability of understanding-user support thus, the greater detail the greater. It doesn’t mean that letters of support ought to be several pages lengthy.
Effective letters will be to-the-point, and they are 1 – 1.5 pages lengthy. Although there’s no standard means by that your letter should unfold, it may be beneficial to first highlight the intent from the letter, after which to proceed using the necessary details regarding background, relevance, impact and support.
Personalizing the letter towards the Nominated Principle Applicant enables review committee to determine the letter writer’s knowledge of and curiosity about the work, and dedication to moving the study results into practice.
Finally, strong letters frequently finish having a statement of enthusiasm or excitement concerning the potential research findings/as well as participation within the project.
Characteristics of weak letters
Although there’s no standard length for letters of support, weak letters are frequently way too short. A couple of sentences are often insufficient room to grow upon the import the project has for that letter author and/or organization.
Ineffective letters are usually token or template letters which are impersonal. Oftentimes, less strong letters don’t have enough history or discussion of relevance.
Among a lot of the letters we examined, most frequently missing would be a description or hypothesis from the outcomes or impact the research may have for that letter author and/or even the organization.
Appendix A: Quick reference