Clinical trials leading the way in innovative care

Posted: May 20, 2019

Patients and their families encouraged to enquire about taking part

Patients are benefiting from innovative clinical trials that are underway at Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and staff want to encourage patients and their families to enquire about any clinical trials they can get involved with. 

Monday is International Clinical Trials Day (20 May) and the Trust will celebrate all it has achieved through running these trials, as well as providing information to patients about how they can take part.  

Research is essential for the development of new treatments and interventions across the NHS, which will greatly increase a patient's treatment choices. Not only has it shown to improve mortality rates and earlier diagnosis but it is also an excellent opportunity for staff to learn new skills.

The Trust currently has 55 active, recruiting trials and over 2,200 patients in both open and follow-up trials. These trials are happening in a number of areas including cardiology, paediatrics and diabetes.

Suzannah Pegler is the lead research practitioner at the Trust. "The Research and Innovation team has developed over the years in response to increasing enthusiasm from clinicians and patients to take part in research," she said.

"International Clinical trials day is an opportunity for the team to celebrate the variety of work they do and increase awareness of research activity across the Trust. More volunteers are needed to take part in clinical research if this vital work is to continue."

One such trial is ORION 4. This trial is being run internationally, seeking to recruit 12,000 patients from the UK, some of which will be Great Western Hospital patients. The trial provides patients over the age of 55 who have had a heart attack or stroke with a drug that can reduce cholesterol levels by 50 to 60 percent, thus reducing the increased risk of future heart attack and stroke.

Mayur Patel, Consultant in Chemical Pathology & Metabolic Medicine at the hospital, is working on the trial. "This is a truly novel clinical trial," he said. "It is the first of its kind and differs from current treatments in that the drug only needs to be administered twice a year, as opposed to daily tablets or two-weekly injections. This is such a positive and we hope to see it being trialled on a number of patients in our Trust who are at risk of a heart attack and stroke."

If you are a patient at Great Western Hospital and would like to find out about any clinical trials that are open to you, please ask a member of staff at your next appointment.

Further information

Please see Research and Innovation: Getting involved: Patients.

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