Welcome to Research and Development

The role of our research department is to support and facilitate clinicians to undertake high quality research, to provide research governance to ensure the interests of our participants, and to ensure the Trust is protected through adherence to the local and national regulatory frameworks.

Health research is how we learn more about illnesses and people’s health.  We know that hospitals that do research have better patient outcomes, for example higher survival rates, shorter hospital stays and less complications following discharge. 

Research is not possible without patients and public volunteers. Can you help us make our research even better?

Without people volunteering to take part in research, we would not be able to determine the causes of diseases nor find new and better ways of preventing or treating them.

Research & Development Five Year Strategy 22-27We are proud to publish our new five year strategy outlining the future of Research and Innovation within our Trust.  We will use this to determine, formulate and implement our goals and use this to overcome any barriers to ensure Research is at the forefront of our Trust.  

Take part in our research

Taking part

If you would like to take part in a research study about a particular illness or health condition, you should first ask your doctor who can discuss current research studies or refer you to appropriate trials.

You can also visit the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) website:

Anyone can get involved – research often needs everyone to participate, not just those with a ‘condition.’ 

Information for our sponsors

NWAngliaFT serves a diverse community enabling us to reach out to an under-served population.  

The Research Team consists of research nurses, practitioners, radiographers, clinical trial assistants, and research administrators who support clinical trials across a variety of specialites. We have an experienced Pharmacy Team and other supporting departments available.

We have the capacity to support the co-ordination and delivery of research trials in a timely and efficient manner. All team members are Good Clinical Practice trained as are our Principal Investigators and consultants who would act as co-investigators.

CRN East of England Network support is available to us if required. 

Research and Development 21/22 KPI report

We pride ourselves on our time to target achievements.

Innovation and Intellectual Property

We recognise the important role that innovation and intellectual property plays in improving patient care.  

We are dedicated to supporting staff members in developing innovative ideas that can result in improvements to patient care.  We work in partnership with Health Tech Enterprise who can provide the expertise and a gateway to finding suitable collaborators whilst ensuring your idea is given Intellectual Protection.

Please contact the Research Team on: 01733 677919 or email:

Jargon Buster

Clinical Study – a research study involving human volunteers (also called participants) that is intended to add to medical knowledge.

Confidentiality – researchers must put data control measures into place, to ensure all of the information collected about the participants is kept confidential.  This means the researchers must get the participants’ written permission to look at their medical or social care records. It also means that any information that might identify the individual participant cannot be used or passed on to others, without first getting the participants’ consent. For example, when researchers publish the results of a trial, they are not allowed to include people’s names. This confidentiality can only be broken in extreme circumstances: where it is essential for the person’s care, treatment or safety, where it is required by a court order, for example in a criminal investigation, or where it is necessary to protect the public.

Eligibility – a clinical assessment of whether a potential participant meets the inclusion and exclusion criteria for a study.

Ethics – these are principles that guide researchers who carry out research with people.  The principles are designed to protect the dignity, safety, rights and well-being of people taking part.  They include asking individuals to give their informed consent to take part in a research project.

Ethics committees - the job of an ethics committee is to make sure that research carried out respects the dignity, rights, safety and well-being of the people who take part. Increasingly ethics committee approval is needed for health and social care research. Ethics committee members include researchers and health care professionals as well as members of the public.

Good Clinical Practice (GCP) – this is a set of internationally recognised ethical and scientific quality requirements which must be observed for designing, conducting, recording and reporting clinical trials involving humans.

HRA – Health Research Authority – an NHS organisation established to protect and promote the interests of patients and the public in health research.

Informed consent – a process used by researchers to communicate to potential and enrolled participants the risks and potential benefits of participating in a clinical study.

Interventional study – a type of clinical trial in which participants are assigned to groups that receive one or more intervention/treatment (or no intervention) so that researchers can evaluate the effects of the interventions on biomedical or health-related outcomes. The assignments are determined by the study's protocol. Participants may receive diagnostic, therapeutic, or other types of interventions.

MHRA – Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency – the authority responsible for ensuring that medicines and medical devices work and are acceptably safe in the UK.

NIHR – National Institute of Health and Care Research – established by Department of Health to provide the framework and management of research within NHS England.

Participant – an individual who is studied in a trial, often, but not necessarily a patient.

Patient Information Leaflet - researchers must provide a patient information leaflet to everyone they invite to take part in a research study, to ensure people can make an informed decision about this. The leaflet explains what taking part will involve and should include details about: why the research is being done, how long it will last, and what methods will be used; the possible; contact details; how the results will be shared with others.

Placebo – an inactive treatment that looks the same as, and is given the same way as, an active drug or intervention / treatment being studied.

Principal investigator (PI) – the person at a site who takes responsibility within the research team for the conduct of a study.

Protocol – the plan or set of steps to be followed in a study.  It will include the studies objectives, design and methods.  It may also include the scientific background and statistical information relevant to the study.

Screening – the process of identifying eligible patients prior to approaching them to ask if they are willing to consent to participate in a study.

Sponsor – the organisation or person who initiates a study and who has authority and control over the study.

Patient Research Ambassadors

What is a Patient Research Ambassador?

A Patient Research Ambassador (PRA) is someone who promotes health research from their point of view. They could be a patient, service user, carer or ordinary member of the public who is enthusiastic about health research and is willing to communicate that to patients, the public and healthcare professionals. They also help research and healthcare staff understand more about the experiences of those who take part in research.
Our PRAs get involved in a variety of activities to help raise the profile of public engagement and the research department as a whole.  Below are some examples of the activities that they have been involved in:

  • Presenting the importance of patient and public involvement (PPI) at a range of events for example: the local library, local village fete, International Clinical Trials Day at the hospital and regional research training workshops
  • Supporting research teams by reading and commenting on study documentation
  • Attending study meetings as a lay or patient representative
  • Website review
  • Participating in and attending our PPI training sessions
  • Giving a presentation on the importance of PPI Contact us:


Patient and public involvement panel

Can you help us make our research better for future patients?

Taking part in clinical trials is not the only way to make a positive impact on research.  We need you to share your experiences, opinions and feelings about our research and to tell us what research questions are really important to you.

Getting involved in this way also gives you a chance to see how research happens ‘behind the scenes’ and meet researchers in person, working together with research teams to make research more relevant and accessible to everyone.  

How can you get involved? 

PPI members

No prior experience or specialist knowledge is required and we need people of all ages and backgrounds, both with and without experience of health conditions to join the panel. All you need is an interest in medical research and a willingness to share your opinions.

How does it work?

If you would like to join the panel we will ask you for some basic information about yourself and what interests you about medical research. We will then try and match you with studies and opportunities as they become available.

All work will be sent to you electronically and the studies you will receive will depend on the research that is happening at that time. If you choose to participate in focus groups or panel meetings, your travel costs can also be reimbursed. You will not be under any obligation to assist in a study and can withdraw from the panel at any time. It will not affect any treatment you receive here at NWAngliaFT.

More information about the PPI panel, getting involved and how you can help our researchers is available by contacting the Research and Development Team:

Contact details

Or phone us on: 01480 847511