Principal Research Fellow
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Email: Sonia Price
Background and research interests
Following qualification as a Registered Nurse in 1991 I worked initially in secondary care focusing on patients with long-term and terminal illness. My subsequent move to primary care started a sixteen-year adventure in Community and Practice Nursing during which I specialised in respiratory disease and clinical research. Since 2009 I have been fortunate to have involvement with the Sidney De Haan Research Centre, specifically researching the benefits of singing for people with COPD. This has enabled me to combine a love of music (choir leadership and singing) with a developing area of research. More recently I have joined the Faculty of Health as a lecturer in adult nursing and am keen to develop links between current research at the SDHRC and clinical practice, particularly its potential for inclusion within management of long-term conditions.
Current and recent projects
East Kent Singing and COPD Project
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease challenges both patient and medical practitioner in terms of disease management and quality of life. The project, conducted in collaboration with the University of Kent and funded by Dunhill Medical Trust, involved setting up several regular groups singing events across East Kent and monitoring participants with standardised spirometry and validated health questionnaires. The evaluation revealed significant improvements in lung volumes and improvements in self-reported health status. Qualitative feedback from participants was very positive and pointed to regular singing helping to improve mental and social wellbeing and control of breathlessness.
Maidstone Prison Pulmonary Rehabilitation project
Joint supervision of a project to introduce pulmonary rehabilitation to inmates with COPD; shortlisted for a Nursing Times award October 2013. Details of the programme run by NHS Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust, and a documentary based on the project.
Lambeth and Southwark Singing and COPD Project
This project, funded by Guy’s and St. Thomas’ Charity, extended the earlier work in East Kent to two boroughs in South London. The work was conducted in collaboration with the University of Kent and the London School of Economics. In this project, the changes in lung volumes found in the East Kent study were not replicated, but clear improvements in self-assessed health status were found, and qualitative feedback was unanimously positive and pointed to considerable benefits for personal and social wellbeing as well and an increased sense of effective self-management of the symptoms associated with COPD.
Evaluation of the Military Wives Choirs Foundation
The Centre has worked with the Military Wives Choirs Foundation to assess the benefits of participation in its national network of choirs. A web-based survey was conducted of participants, choir committee members and choir facilitators. The findings demonstrated a wide range of personal, social and wellbeing benefits from regular singing, but also some of the challenges associated with being part of a high profile network which places an emphasis on performance
Price, S., Whitfield L (2018) Singing for health: Do members of a generic singing for health group experience similar effects on health and well-being as those in condition-specific groups? Journal of Applied Arts & Health, Volume 9, Number 3, 1 November 2018, pp. 351-366(16)
- Skingley, A., Clift, S., Hurley, S., Price, S. and Stephens, L. (2018) Community singing groups for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: Participant perspectives. Perspectives in Public Health, 138, 1: 66-75.
- Clift, S., Page, S., Daykin, N. and Peasgood, E. (2016) The perceived effects of singing on the health and well-being of wives and partners of members of the British Armed Forces: a cross-sectional survey, Public Health, 138, 93-100.
- Skingley, A., Page, S., Clift, S., Morrison, I., Coulton, S., Treadwell, P., Vella-Burrows, T., Salisbury, I., Shipton, M. (2014) ‘ Singing for breathing’ groups for people with COPD: participants’ experiences, Arts and Health: an international journal for research, policy and practice, 6, 2, 59-74.
- Morrison, I., Clift, S., Page, S., Salisbury, I., Shipton, M., Skingley, A., Vella-Burrows, T., Coulton, S. and Treadwell, P. (2013) A UK feasibility study on the value of singing for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), UNESCO journal, 3, 3.
- Fraser, J., Page, S. and Skingley, A. (2011) Drawing breath: promoting meaning and self-management in COPD, British Journal of Community Nursing, 6, 2, 58-64.