Date: 31 August 2018
The public spoke to healthcare staff about NHS research and how to get involved at an information stand in The Oracle, Reading on Thursday 30 August.
Research assistants and nurses from the Royal Berkshire Hospital and Berkshire’s GP practices were on the upper level of the shopping centre speaking to the public about studies taking place in Berkshire’s NHS.
The information stand was organised by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), which supports research into areas such as cancer, diabetes, injuries, kidney disease and mental health.
Emily Nash, a Trauma and Orthopaedics research nurse at the Royal Berkshire Hospital, said: “My focus is on fractures and finding the best treatments for patients who have experienced them. It’s important that patients take part in these studies because without them, this vital research can’t take place.
“It’s really positive and exciting to talk to the public about research and making sure that they’re aware that it is taking place in the NHS.”
Participating in health research helps develop new treatments, improve the NHS and save lives. Patients and healthy volunteers are often asked by the NHS if they wish to take part in studies.
This could involve trials of new drugs and medical devices, questionnaires on a participant’s health or getting consent to access a patient’s medical records to use in research.
Sarah MacGill, a radiology research nurse at the Royal Berkshire Hospital, said: “I think it’s important that the public are aware of clinical research and what it means. It can be frightening to some people when you use the word research, so I think it’s really good to let them know it’s a beneficial thing to be involved in.”
Patients are encouraged to ask their doctor about research opportunities and view trials seeking volunteers at The UK Clinical Trials Gateway at www.ukctg.nihr.ac.uk.
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