Through research, we can help meet the NHS and Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust’s primary objective, to improve patient care. We can only achieve this with your help. Patient involvement in clinical research is vital, and public involvement is also much needed and appreciated. Research helps to answer the questions about which methods of diagnosis and treatments have the most beneficial outcomes for patients, in terms of curing, controlling and preventing disease.
- Research has already discovered cures for many diseases.
- Research is currently helping many people to control their disease and minimise their treatment.
- Research is the only way we can continue to improve treatment of diseases and patient care.
Taking part in research
We are a research active Trust, investigating underlying causes and new treatments for many acute and chronic conditions, and taking part in clinical trials. Research is conducted in almost all specialties. Our research strengths include cardiovascular disease, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, surgery, emergency medicine, respiratory medicine and gastroenterology.
We have many different research studies taking place (over 300 at any time), so as a patient, or as a relative of a patient, you may be approached at some point about a research study that is relevant to you.
All clinical research trials that open in Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust have been thoroughly scrutinised by specialist scientists and healthcare professionals, relevant UK regulatory bodies, independent ethics committees and by the Trust Research and Development Office. This rigorous process ensures that patients and the public can have confidence in, and benefit from, excellent quality research in health and social care.
What does participation mean for you?
If you are asked whether you would like to participate in a clinical trial relevant to you, you will be provided with an ethically approved information sheet, which will detail what that particular study involves. A member of a research team will go through this with you to ensure that you have a thorough understanding of the study before you decide whether you would like to give your consent to participate. In most circumstances, you will have some time to think about whether this would be right for you, and it may help to discuss this with a friend or relative. The participant information sheet will have the contact details of the research team for your trial and you can raise any queries you might have with them.
The potential burdens
If you do decide to participate in research, you may be asked to be involved in tasks that are additional to standard care. These could involve completing questionnaires, donating blood samples and tissues, taking medication or visiting a clinic for extra scans or examinations.
When deciding whether a research study can be ethically approved, ethics committees evaluate if the study might present a potential burden to its participants, and whether that burden is considered acceptable in light of the benefits that could be gained from participation. Whatever the level of involvement, participation in a research study is always voluntary and participants are able to withdraw from a study at any time, without giving a reason and without affecting your normal treatment.
The potential benefits
Research within the NHS does not result in financial gain for participating patients, although expenses such as travel costs to extra clinic visits related to research are often reimbursed.
Participation also gives an opportunity to play a part in potentially improving the treatment of the condition being investigated for people in the future, providing patients with a degree of control over the disease affecting them.
All participants involved in NHS research are entitled to be informed of the results of the study once it has been completed.