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Research and Innovation

​​​​​​The Research and Innovation Team is committed to bringing the best patient care to the people of Staffordshire through new drugs and treatments by using innovative research and fostering creative ideas.

In this section you will find information about the R&D Team including who we are, the work we do, and how you can get involved.

There is also information for staff on the ways we can offer support and we are particularly keen to hear from companies, organisations, and charities who would like to work in partnership with us to further develop research and development opportunities.

We are currently reviewing and adding new content to these pages so please keep checking back for more information.

In the meantime, if you would like more information on Research and Development please e-mail:

If you have an idea for a research study, in the first instance, please contact our Academic Team via e-mail at academic.research@uhnm.nhs.uk

General research enquiries contact resea​rch@uhnm.nhs.uk​ or call 01782 675381.​

At University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust we are a 'research active' organisation, which means we actively seek and support the development and delivery of potentially the best innovative new treatments for our patients.

Our researchers are internationally renowned and take part in global research to help a whole range of medical conditions. Through our collaboration with Keele University, leading professors and research scientists are now working alongside our clinicians to deliver ground-breaking research that can help patients not just in Staffordshire, but all over the world.

Within their specialist labs on the Trust's site, Keele researchers are devising new drugs and new treatments at a laboratory bench, which doctors and nurses are then delivering directly to patients' bedsides.

This means we have home-grown treatments which have been developed in the Trust's site now being trialed directly with our patients in areas such as Cancer, Stroke and Diabetes.​

Research and Innovation – What we Do?

The R&I Department develops opportunities to find innovative treatments and looks for ideas for new products or procedures to help further improve patient care.

For our work on research there are two main areas:

1.    Home-grown research and NHS research

As a research active organisation our own staff and clinicians suggest ideas for research based on their experience and the needs of their patients. We also support national studies and trials run by the NHS.

2.    Commercial research
We also work in partnership with other public and private organisations to help in the development of a drug or equipment to take to market. This may include other health organisations and pharmaceutical companies who want to use our expertise and invite our patients to take part in research.

​Want to carry out some Research?

If you have an idea for a research study, in the first instance, please contact our Academic Team via e-mail at academic.research@uhnm.nhs.uk

​Innovation is key to Unlocking Future Developments

If you have ever had that light bulb moment when you can see a better way of doing something or had an idea for a new piece of equipment to help patients, then our Commercial Development Team wants to hear from you.

They work with patients through to doctors and nurses, indeed anyone working at the Trust, to develop new ideas. These may include innovations to improve the way we work or ideas to further improve the care offer. An example may be an idea for a new piece of equipment to help patients.

Ideas into a Reality

Our Commercial Development Team looks at turning an idea into a reality.

Not only can they help to bring ideas into practice on our wards and clinics but also develop ideas for sale in the commercial market. Using their specialist experience, the Commercial Development Team offers expert guidance to help make an idea into a saleable commodity. The money raised is then re-invested in services and care at the Trust.​

​​Contact the team via e-mail at commercialresearchteam@uhnm.nhs.uk

Staff Training and Development Opportunities with Research and Development

There are a number of opportunities offering training and support to Trust staff to help them develop their skills and experience in delivering research trials.

All our courses are free of charge and offered by our friendly and experienced staff. Places are limited so booking is required.

GCP Training

GCP training is provided by the NIHR and here is the link for the e-learning GCP.

http://learn.nihr.ac.uk

Here at UHNM we work in partnership with the NIHR Clinical Research Network West Midlands. This organisation helps to increase opportunities for patients to take part in clinical research, ensures that studies are carried out efficiently, and supports the Government's Strategy for UK Life Sciences by improving the environment for commercial contract clinical research in the NHS in the West Midlands.

It is the largest (by population) of 15 local branches in a co-ordinated national Network

The Network team is passionate about the contribution that clinical research can make to patient care, and works collaboratively with other NHS providers to translate that passion into the effective delivery of studies in the area.

It makes sure that clinical research occupies the place it deserves to in the day-to-day work of the NHS across the West Midlands locality. This includes Trusts, primary care organisations and any other qualified providers of NHS services.

Further information and contact details can be found on the website:

www.nihr.ac.uk/wmidlands​​

The Clinical Research Network is part of the National Institute for Health Research, the clinical research delivery arm of the NHS.

Whether you are making an enquiry or would like to find out more information about research as a UHNM patient, researcher or representative from a commercial company, please contact us at:​

The Research & Innovation Department

Courtyard Annexe (C Block)

University Hospitals of North Midlands

Royal Stoke University Hospital​

Newcastle Road

Stoke-on-Trent

Staffordshire

ST4 6QG

Telephone; 01782 675381

Email: research@uhnm.nhs.uk

The purpose of this document is to inform our participants about how their data is used in our study.

What is CCP-UK?

The CCP-UK (Clinical Characterisation Protocol – United Kingdom) is a study that collects information about infectious diseases of public health importance quickly and efficiently in response to potential public health crises. The study was activated in January 2020 in response to the emergence of what was then called Wuhan Flu, which led to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since being activated, we have recruited over 300,000 patients to the data collection aspect of our study. CCP-UK is the largest study of its kind answering questions about COVID-19 in the world. We have also been activated for cases of Ebola, Monkeypox, Lassa Fever and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

What data do we collect?

 Research nurses and medical students at hospitals across the UK recruited people who tested positive for COVID-19. The research nurses and medical students recorded information on patients’ hospital stay, such as whether they had any underlying conditions, what medicine they were given and what the result of their hospital stay was (discharged well, discharged disabled or death). 

The research team then input this information into our study database. All data inputted on the database is anonymised – each patient is given a unique participant ID, so no names are stored on the database and individuals cannot be directly identified.

Participants’ date of birth, NHS number and postcode are also recorded on the database. This information is hugely important for the study, which is why we cannot leave it out for confidentiality purposes. Date of birth is important to allow us to analyse the impact of age on COVID-19 outcomes. NHS numbers are important as these let us link to other NHS databases to obtain further information, such as which of our participants received a particular drug to treat COVID-19, or who has received a COVID-19 vaccine. Postcodes are important to allow us to analyse the impact of deprivation factors, such as living in a poorer area, on COVID-19 outcomes. Without these key pieces of information, we wouldn’t be able to complete most of the analysis that we have done and would not have been able to have the same positive impact on the UK’s COVID response.

Why are we allowed to collect this data without consent?

In March 2020, in order to boost the UK’s response to COVID-19, the Department of

Health and Social Care served the NHS with a COPI (Control of Patient Information Regulations 2002) Notice, requiring them to share confidential patient information without consent for specific purposes. These specific purposes included research on COVID-19. Because of the COPI Notice, our study has been collecting data from patients admitted to hospital in the UK with COVID-19 without getting their permission first

Being able to collect this data without obtaining permission has been very important in enabling our study to achieve what we have done. Many of the people admitted with COVID-19 were too sick to give consent themselves and because of COVID-19 precautions, they were not accompanied by relatives who could speak for them. Because we were not required to obtain consent from each of our participants, we have been able to recruit many more participants than usual and we were able to include the sickest patients who are often missed from studies like ours. We have also been able to work very quickly. Because of this, our data has been able to capture what is happening with COVID around the UK in near real-time. This allowed us to provide the health policy teams and doctors in the NHS with the most up-to-date information to guide the health response throughout the pandemic.

What has the study achieved?

Because we have been able to collect and analyse this data quickly and efficiently, we have been able to achieve a lot through our study.

  • We provide reports to SAGE and NERVTAG weekly. These are the committees that provide advice to health and social care policy makers for the UK COVID-19 response.
  • We have been able to identify several risk factors in the UK population that are strongly associated with poor outcomes in COVID-19, including the impact of obesity, respiratory conditions and different outcomes between ethnic groups.
  • We have been able to provide data supporting identification of high-risk groups for COVID-19 vaccination which meant they were given priority and this saved lives.
  • We have been able to conduct research into the usefulness of COVID-19 drugs treatments and shown what works well and what does not.

You can review these outcomes at our website: https://isaric4c.net/outputs/.

How is the data collected kept safe?

We make sure that the data on our database is as secure as possible. The database is only accessible by approved colleagues with passwords, and is run by IT systems with very high standards of security. The physical notes that research nurses complete before transferring the information to the database are kept in locked rooms accessed only by hospital staff, or on hospitals’ secure electronic healthcare record system.

We make sure the data is as confidential as possible by anonymising it (using unique participant IDs rather than names). The data collected (including date of birth, NHS number, postcode) is only accessible by members of the study team, and is not disclosed beyond this. Once the NHS number is used for linkage we remove it from the research database.

How can I opt out of having my data collected?

If you have opted out of your data being used for research via the National Data Opt-Out (https://www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters/), we will remove your data from our database if you have been recruited.

If you have not opted out of your data being used for research via the National Data Opt-Out but you would like to opt out from your data being used for our study, you can contact the study team to request this at ccp@liverpool.ac.uk. If you want to opt out please send us an email including your name, date of birth, NHS number and postcode. You do not need to give a reason for why you want to opt out. We will look for your details in our data and if we find it we will delete it. In any case we will email back to you within 14 days to tell you if we found your data and if we did, to confirm that your data has been removed.

If you would like to learn more about our study and how patient data is collected, used and protected, please visit https://isaric4c.net/privacy/.