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Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust tops the table for research


Yorkshire is the ambulance trust that undertook the most clinical research studies and recruited the highest number of participants last year, according to a national league table from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

The league table is published by the NIHR Clinical Research Network and aims to make engagement in clinical research more transparent and accessible to patients, health and social care professionals and decision-makers.

The table provides a picture of research activity across all NHS trusts and CCG regions in England. The table data includes how much clinical research is happening, where, in what types of trusts, and involving how many patients.

Last year ambulance trusts contributed to 29 research studies on the Portfolio, recruiting nearly 3,000 participants. This shows great commitment to improving patient care through research in such a challenging area.  

The 2018-19 table published on 2 July and shows that Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust had recruited to the most clinical research studies (8) and recruited the highest number of participants (753), followed by South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (691 participants) and South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (562 participants).

Professor Matthew Costa is the NIHR Clinical Research Network National Specialty Lead for Injuries and Emergencies, he said:

“Patients who have serious injuries or emergency health problems are often in pain and very frightened. Plus, there is a need to get them to hospital quickly. It is particularly difficult for ambulance crews to offer information about research to patients and to deliver research studies in the pre-hospital environment.

“Therefore, we were nervous when we asked every ambulance trust in the country to recruit participants to two or more research studies as part of the NIHR Clinical Research Network objectives.

“It is a great testament to the hard work of the ambulance trusts that every single one of has achieved this objective for two consecutive years. Many are helping patients to take part in more than two studies, which is amazing and will help to improve patient care.”

Professor Rachael Fothergill, Chair of the National Ambulance Research Steering Group and Head of Research for London Ambulance Service, said:

“Clinical research is something that ambulance services are very committed to and this is reflected in the year on year increases in research activity that we are seeing. The delivery of research by ambulance services can be particularly challenging due to the emergency and transitory nature of our interaction with patients, so to be able to show that we have successfully recruited large numbers of patients into research trials is a testament to the commitment of our staff.”

The clinical research league table is available at: