Research panels are often made up of around a dozen patients / members of the public. They are long-standing, although membership may change over time, and they meet regularly over several years. They may be focused on one area, for example diabetes, or made up of people with diverse experiences who can comment on more general research, for example primary care research. Panels are often attached to a research department at a university, hospital or research organisation such as a clinical research network. Panels often help researchers to develop and design research projects at the early stages. Panel members may then become involved in the research once it is funded.
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