NIHR at 10

2016 marks a decade since we were established. Throughout the last ten years we have contributed significantly to the health and wealth of the nation and we are now the most comprehensive research system in the world.

We support 'bench to bedside' research for the benefit of patients and the economy. we work with patients and the public to shape our research agenda, finding new ways of preventing, identifying and treating ill health, evaluating the effectiveness and impact of new healthcare treatments, and ensuring that the best possible evidence is available to inform decisions about health and social care.

We attract investment into the UK by supporting partnerships with life science companies, including small and medium enterprises, and charities, and build capacity and leadership in the research workforce.

NIHR at 10 logo

NIHR at 10 Conference

Our work has had a significant impact on the research landscape and has been growing year on year. In 2014/15:

  • more than 260,000 people took part in NIHR research studies
  • a record-breaking 21,499 people took part in dementia research supported by the NIHR
  • £97.8 million was invested in training programmes, with more than five thousand trainees receiving support in their career development
  • £135 million has been invested in cancer research
  • nearly £1 billion external research investment was attracted
  • more than £41 million intellectual assets were generated
  • 114 licensing deals were conducted; and 111 patents were granted
  • more than 250 NICE guidelines used NIHR-generated evidence

Our latest annual report and NIHR 10@10: Celebrating 10 years of NIHR created by the NIHR CLAHRCs highlight more activity.

Read how the NIHR was created and has developed throughout the decade. 

Information Sheets

The NIHR has developed a series of information sheets (PDF) about its work and activities in key areas:

Patients and the public Best evidence for health An engine for growth Developing research leaders of the future

Independent recognition

The Research Excellence Framework (REF), a system for assessing the quality of research, has recognised the major role played by the NIHR in underpinning the outstanding quality and impact of research in the health and life sciences produced by universities working in collaboration with the NHS.

 A report from its ‘Main Panel A’ and its sub-panels said:

“We consider that the overall increased NIHR funding seen since 2006 and decisions to maintain government science funding in times of economic hardship have had a positive influence in the increased quality of the outputs...and has put the UK in a very strong position worldwide in research.”

 “The increasing investment made by the NIHR since 2006 has had an enormous beneficial effect on the ability of universities to translate their research into patient benefit.”

RAND Europe economic analysis of the NIHR’s Health Technology Assessment Programme

In 2015, RAND Europe conducted an economic analysis of the impact of research funded under the NIHR’s Health Technology Assessment (HTA) programme to understand its potential economic benefits. 

Rand reported that the 10 projects that were examined could bring benefits worth approximately £3 billion if the new treatments were used in the NHS for one year. This figure includes both cost savings for the NHS and the health benefit to patients converted into financial terms.