Growing numbers of patients help medical research

Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth
Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth

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PATIENTS have been given more opportunities to take part in research looking to deliver better care, services and treatments.

Figures published by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) found Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust recruited 5,605 participants into research studies in 2016/17.

This is a 52 per cent increase on 2015/16 when 3,678 participants were recruited.

The trust, which runs Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham, also saw a 16 per cent increase in the number of research studies it is able to offer to patients – from 172 in 2015/16 to 200 in 2016/17.

Rosellen Lambert, from Gosport, took part in one of the research studies at QA.

The 43-year-old was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in August 2015 after finding a lump in her abdomen.

A month later she had a full hysterectomy, followed by six rounds of chemotherapy and a single course of radiotherapy.

At the end of last year she was given the all-clear.

Rosellen went on to take part in a study looking at mindfulness sessions to improve mental health and wellbeing in patients with recurrent ovarian cancer.

The study, called MoVA, was funded by the National Institute of Health Research National School of Primary Care Research

She said: ‘The timing of the study was perfect for me.

‘Up until the end of my treatment I was so busy getting from appointment to appointment that I didn’t have time to actually face the fact that I had been diagnosed with cancer, you just go through the process.

‘So, because of that, the mindfulness study really appealed to me – especially with regards to taking control of things on my own.’

Rosellen said she would encourage people to look into getting involved in studies: ‘Look at the possibilities and the opportunities because it’s a chance to get extra support, extra help and possibly extra treatment,’ she said.

Professor Anoop Chauhan, director of research and innovation at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, said: ‘This really is a great achievement, not only for our research team, but for the whole trust, and especially for our patients.

‘It is our aim to be able to offer every patient who enters our hospital the opportunity to take part in a clinical trial.’