Research in the Oxford Hospitals
The Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust (John Radcliffe Hospital, Churchill Hospital, Horton Hospital and Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre) is one of a number of Trusts in Oxfordshire which is actively involved in research. Other local Trusts are the Ridgeway Partnership, Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust and Oxfordshire Primary Care Trust.
Clinical research is research undertaken on human participants, their organs or tissues, or using health related data. It may involve patients or healthy volunteers and is used to provide information about disease prevention, diagnosis, treatment or relief of symptoms or wider health related issues. Clinical trials are a subset of clinical research. These may use medicines, medical devices or procedures and are designed to test or compare different interventions. Other types of clinical research include the use of questionnaires, interviews or focus groups to elicit information about health related experiences, and research on biological samples or clinical data.
The Research Governance Framework for Health and Social Care 2005 (RGF) applies to almost all health and social care research and provides a set of principles, requirements and standards for good research governance, the aim of which is to protect the well-being of participants and ensure high quality research.
All research coming under the RGF needs a Sponsor (an individual, institution or organisation that takes on responsibility for the appropriate management and conduct of the research) and adequate funding. Sponsors may be commercial pharmaceutical companies, or non-commercial organisations such as NHS Trusts, Universities, Charities, Research Councils or Networks. Funding may come from a variety of sources for example the Department of Health through bodies such as the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), Research Councils, charities and commercial companies.
The regulatory framework governing the conduct of clinical research also includes The Medicines for Human Use (Clinical Trials) Act 2004 and updates, the Data Protection Act 1998, The Mental Capacity Act 2005, The Human Tissue Act 2004 and The Health and Social Care Act 2001.
With very few exceptions, all clinical research has to be approved by a Research Ethics Committee (REC) and if it involves NHS patients, staff, facilities or resources, by the NHS organisation hosting it (NHS permission). Ethical approval is organised centrally through the Integrated Research Application System (IRAS). If it is a clinical trial involving medicines or some types of medical device it will also require approval from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
Research is undertaken across a wide variety of specialities including:
For further information: