Guy’s and St Thomas’ is the number one Trust in London for clinical research according to new figures published today (18 July).
The Trust claimed top spot in the capital both for the number of clinical trials that are open for patients to join, and for the number of people that took part in research. The figures were published by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).
Guy’s and St Thomas’ was ranked second in England for the number of clinical trials with 533 studies open for recruitment. This represents a 7% increase on last year’s figures.
Between April 2017 and March 2018, 19,053 participants took part in research at Guy’s and St Thomas’, making the Trust the third highest recruiter in the country.
Professor Charles Wolfe, Director of Research and Development at Guy’s and St Thomas’ said: “Patients are at the heart of research. Everything we do aims to improve treatments for patients now and in the future, and we couldn’t make important breakthroughs without the participants who volunteer for studies. Thank you to everyone who has helped make Guy’s and St Thomas’ a leading Trust for research.”
Alan Luker, 68 from Snodland in Kent, participated in the NIHR-funded REVIVED study at St Thomas’ hospital. He said: “I was lucky enough to take part in the REVIVED study, and the improvement after taking part has been dramatic. It’s improved my quality of life and I’ve been back to the gym and training. Last year, at 67, I broke three world records for my power lifting.
“It’s a massive bonus for me that someone else somewhere in the world will possibly be helped by me taking part in research. Knowing that this can add to doctors’ knowledge and improve treatments is amazing. I’m not a doctor, but it means so much to know that I’m contributing in my own way.”
NIHR is the health body responsible for supporting and facilitating clinical research studies across England and publishes its annual performance figures each year.
Both patients and healthy volunteers are encouraged to talk to their healthcare practitioners about participating in clinical research.
Ann-Marie Murtagh, Director of Research and Development Operations at Guy’s and St Thomas’ said: “This is a great achievement for Guy’s and St Thomas’, and it’s a testament to the expertise and hard work of research staff, and everyone at the Trust who contributes. We are also extremely grateful to the patients and healthy volunteers who participate in studies and make our work possible.”
Guy’s and St Thomas’, King’s College Hospital and South London and Maudsley are all part of King’s Health Partners (KHP), an Academic Health Sciences Centre which brings together world-class research, education and clinical practice for the benefit of patients.
Trusts from across King’s Health Partners also performed well in the league table, with King’s College Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust increasing the number of open trials from 333 in 2016/17 to 352 in 2017/18. South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust was the top mental health Trust in the country for number of open studies.
Professor Sir Robert Lechler, Executive Director of King’s Health Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre, said: “As an Academic Health Sciences Centre, our purpose is to translate cutting-edge research into excellent patient care. We know there is a clear correlation between the numbers of patients entering into trials and better clinical outcomes, so I am delighted to see that our Trusts have maintained and improved their positions in the clinical research league tables.”
Over 725,000 participants across the country signed up for NIHR-supported studies in 2017-18, a 9% increase from last year’s figures and a record number for the NIHR.
Dr Jonathan Sheffield OBE, Chief Executive Officer of the NIHR Clinical Research Network (CRN) said: “Health research is the key to finding new and innovative cures, treatments and care for patients. Evidence also shows research active organisations consistently deliver better outcomes to all patients they treat, not just those involved in health research trials.
“We aim to ensure research is embedded in all aspects of care delivered in England. We also wish to provide an opportunity for anyone to be involved in a health research study. With nearly three quarters of a million participants in the last year we are moving closer to achieving this.”