Members of the public and patients at Royal Surrey play a vital role in the research we do.
We want our patients to benefit from the latest evidence, treatments and technologies, and best way to do that is to work together with those patients.
This does not only mean volunteering to take part in research studies, it also means helping us to set the research agenda.
It is important that clinical research is guided by people’s lived experience. We always try to make sure that our work reflects the needs of our patients and our local communities, and that is impossible without directly engaging the community in it.
We see this as an ethical and a moral imperative, and before we take on any research project, we ensure that members of the public have been consulted, and their views taken on-board.
To this end, we have appointed a trust Public & Patient Involvement & Engagement lead, a Public Advisory Group on Research, and a panel of Research Champions – made up of current and former patients – whose role is to ensure that even in the most complex and technical research project, the voice of our community is heard and listened to.
The National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) has published a comprehensive guide for members of the public who would like to be more involved in research. You can view this guide here.
If you've found your way to this page then you may well be thinking about taking part in a research programme, and helping us to shape the future of medicine.
There is a lot to consider when you're deciding whether to be involved in a research study. Every study is unique, and has very different requirements. Your clinician will always provide you with a Patient Information Sheet, which should give you all the details of the study in an easy-to-read format.
Many of our patients who have taken part in research have found it to be a positive and rewarding process.
There is evidence that for some conditions, patients involved with clinical trials have better long term outcomes and may also get earlier access to new drugs.
Your health will be closely monitored throughout a clinical trial. Any changes in your health, whether or not they are related to the treatment you are having, are frequently picked up and acted upon earlier than if you were not in a trial. However, some people find that the extra attention makes them worry more about their condition.
There are also much wider benefits to taking part in research. For many, it is a great source of pride that the research they are taking part in today could improve the treatment of patients for generations to come.
If you have a condition, and would like to know more about the research opportunities in that field, speak to your clinician in the first instance. During your consultation, your clinician will inform you about the trials that are happening now and relevant to you.
To find out more about the research studies taking place at the Royal Surrey, you can visit our Active Studies page.
The NIHR has a national research database, which is searchable, and includes details of all of the studies it is currently funding across the UK. You can visit their Be Part Of Research website for more information.
For any further advice or guidance, please contact the Royal Surrey’s Research, Innovation & Development team on 01483 688 660 or at rsc-tr.ResearchAndDevelopment@nhs.net.