11 July 2019

UCLPartners welcomes new applied research body

The announcement today of a new national network focusing on applied health and social care research has been welcomed by UCLPartners.

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Applied Research Collaborations (ARCs) are based on the same regions as England’s 15 AHSNs and will work closely with them. One of the new NIHR ARCs covers the North Thames area.

Professor Rosalind Raine, Director, NIHR ARC North Thames, said “The key to achieving the Holy Grail of delivering world leading research and rapid impact is to work hand in glove with our partners. We are designed to be agile enough to tackle major emerging issues that come from the ground up, from frontline staff, patients and the public.  So our results will be of direct value and can be readily spread across the country in partnership with our AHSN, UCLPartners.

“We are also passionate about reducing inequalities. We must achieve benefits for all those in our region, which encompasses a range of neighbourhoods including the third most deprived in England. We also serve ethnically diverse and highly mobile communities. By closely collaborating with ARCs across the country, we will ensure that our research is truly relevant to different social and demographic groups whether they live in urban or rural settings.”

Professor Mike Roberts, AHSN Managing Director, UCLPartners, said “We very much look forward to working  with the ARC to ensure that high quality applied health and care research continues to contribute to the improvement of health and social care services, reducing inequalities in our regional population and beyond”

A key early joint priority will be responding to a national survey of the NHS’s local innovation and research needs which was published earlier this year.

The NIHR ARC North Thames is a partnership of six leading universities (UCL, QMUL, LSE, LSHTM, City and UEL) and is jointly led by Barts Health NHS Trust and UCL. Other members of the collaboration include NHS trusts, councils, patients, communities, charities and industry.

The NIHR North Thames ARC will focus on five themes: mental health, multimorbidity, population health and social care, innovation and implementation, health economics and data. It is also designated as the national ARC lead for population health.