Could the new Life Sciences Strategy be a bit too Basic for the UK’s needs?

First, the positive. Last week the Medical Research Council (MRC) announced that Professor Andrew Morris had been appointed Director of the new UK health and biomedical informatics research institute. Why should this matter to you and I? Because this is the second occasion in less than six months when a senior research leader in the UK... Continue Reading →

Fight the good fight: medical research charity advertising slogans

Over the last few months, I have been noting down charity advertising copy as I go about London. Here are ten. Notice any trends? Diagnosed with blood cancer, Chloe only has one hope...YOU. Text HOPE.... Anthony Nolan Trust 2013 Elliot is deafblind. He can't tell it's Christmas. Text TOY to....Sense Help us beat cancer sooner... Continue Reading →

Round round get around I get around – Caldicott2, patient data, dementia portal and more!

So sang The Beach Boys who were on Radio 2's 'In Concert' this week.  Not that I'm a great fan but it seemed apposite given my week.  This has involved visits to TrialReach, Oxford (well, virtually!) to discuss plans for public involvement in the Biomedical Research Centre there, my good colleagues at BioMedCentral and, tomorrow,... Continue Reading →

DH and charities reach acoRD over medical research costs

Divvying up the costs of conducting research in the NHS funded by medical research charities is an intricate business.   Who pays for that research nurse, their time in administering the extra treatment required in a clinical trial, the procedures and equipment needed as part of its conduct, the oversight and governance needed to ensure that things are done... Continue Reading →

Budget reaction

UPDATE & FURTHER COMMENT There's a very helpful bullet point summary of the budget measures concerning health research on NIHR's website. Having only just landed in the office after an afternoon following developments while in and out of meetings, I would add the following to my comment earlier today: 'Credit where credit is due.  After... Continue Reading →

Second Reading of the Health and Social Care Bill: An open letter to MPs

Dear Member of Parliament, This afternoon the Health and Social Care Bill will recieve its Second Reading in the House of Commons.  The legislation sets out a far-reaching programme for reforming the NHS and the provision of patient care.  The Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) and its 127 member charities believe that high quality... Continue Reading →

Regulating research – Blakemore/Deer comment pieces + AMRC background

Ahead of next week's Academy of Medical Sciences (AMS) much anticipated report on medical research regulation I see  The Times and Sunday Times (both paywall) have published pieces this weekend by scientist Professor Colin Blakemore and journalist Brian Deer respectively, offering different perspectives on the issue of regulation. If you are looking for further background on... Continue Reading →

More NHS patients participating in UK clinical trials than ever before

A piece of good news with which to begin the New Year.  PharmaTimes is reporting that the number of patients participating in clinical trials jumped by 67% last year to over half a million (compared to over 300,000 in 2009). The new CEO of the National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Network Co-ordinating Centre (NIHR... Continue Reading →

AMRC Opus 125

I can't think of a better way to end the week than to announce our 125th member charity.  'Autistica' is the largest UK charity raising funds for medical research to improve diagnosis, advance new treatments and discover the causes of autism. The charity has been funding medical research for 6 years, and funds project grants, programme... Continue Reading →

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