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Overview of Priority Setting Partnerships

Priority Setting Partnerships bring patients and clinicians together to work through the JLA process. The aim of a Priority Setting Partnership is to identify patients’ and clinicians’ shared priorities for research into the treatment of specific health problems.

The JLA's current portfolio of Priority Setting Partnerships can be viewed by clicking here.

Priority Setting Partnerships' objectives are to:
  • bring patients and clinicians together to identify uncertainties about the effects of treatments
  • agree by consensus a prioritised 'top 10' list of those uncertainties, for research
  • publicise the methods and results of the Priority Setting Partnership
  • draw the results to the attention of research funders, independently of the JLA
Advocates of the following groups are invited to take part in a Priority Setting Partnership:
  • people who have or have had the health problem in question
  • carers of those affected
  • medical doctors, nurses and allied health professionals with experience of caring for people with the health problem 
The Priority Setting Partnership is led by a steering group. To see a template of a steering group's terms of reference, click here.

The overall structure and role of the partnership is set out in the Protocol.

An overview of the key roles and required competencies can be downloaded here. More detail on the required resources is here.

The Pre-term Birth Priority Setting Partnership has developed an information sheet on getting involved. To download it, click here.


The role of the JLA is to support and guide the Priority Setting Partnership, as a neutral facilitator. Members of the JLA's Monitoring and Implementation Group and Strategy and Development Group may be able to offer access to potential funders and other interested parties. While the JLA will be on hand to offer advice where needed, its practical involvement in the process (including chairing and facilitating meetings) ceases once the top 10 priorities have been agreed.

Members of the Partnership and the steering group are responsible for publicising the priorities to research funders.

Please contact the JLA if you are interested in establishing a Priority Setting Partnership and would like to discuss it with us. Click here.

To see some examples of JLA Priority Setting Partnerships, click here
The Asthma Priority Setting Partnership brought together two partners: Asthma UK, representing patients, and the British Thoracic Society, representing clinicians. Fourteen of their members participated in the priority setting exercise. Further information, including reports, articles and evaluations, are on the JLA website - click here.

The Urinary Incontinence Priority Setting Partnership was led at steering group level by the Bladder & Bowel Foundation, representing patients, and the Cochrane Collaboration, representing clinicians. There were 21 partner organisations involved in identifying and prioritising treatment uncertainties. Further information is on the JLA website - click here.

The Vitiligo Priority Setting Partnership was coordinated by the Centre for Evidence Based Dermatology, representing clinicians, and the Vitiligo Society, representing patients. Further information is on the JLA website - click here.

The Prostate Cancer Priority Setting Partnership was led by the Prostate Cancer Support Federation and Prostate Action (formerly the Prostate Cancer Research Foundation, now merged with Prostate UK) and included input from individual clinicians and representatives of 20 patient organisations. Further information is on the JLA website - click here.

The Lyme Disease Priority Setting Partnership is being coordinated by a patient group, Lyme Disease Action (LDA), with input from clinician partners. Information on the Steering Group members and the overall process, which was originally published in LDA's member newsletter, can be downloaded here.

The Pressure Ulcer Priority Setting Partnership has been initiated by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Wounds Research for Patient Benefit Programme (WRPB). WRPB is a research initiative involving NHS Leeds Community Healthcare and the University of York. A website dedicated to the partnership is at www.jlapressureulcerpartnership.co.uk. To see a flow chart setting out the Partnership's process, click here

The Tinnitus Priority Setting Partnership is being coordinated by the British Tinnitus Association. They have set up a micro site about the process, to encourage people to get involved and keep them informed: www.tinnitus.org.uk/JLA

Further examples of current and completed Priority Setting Partnerships can be viewed here