Welcome to the Department of Clinical Research

Clinical research is the way we determine the best ways to prevent, diagnose or treat disease.  We work with patients, carers, NHS trusts, universities, industry and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to take the best new ideas from cutting edge science and use them to improve treatment, care and services. We have around 350 active research projects running at any one time.

Many of our staff are involved in conducting or supporting research, especially the NIHR portfolio of research, which provides patients, and in some cases carers and staff, with the opportunity to take part in relevant national studies.

We may therefore approach you to take part in a research project and we hope you would consider this. In some cases it may be as simple as completing a questionnaire, or giving an extra blood sample. It may be more complex involving additional clinical tests or taking different medication. However, participation is always voluntary and you may refuse or withdraw at any time without the need to give a reason and without it affecting your normal care.

Before they are authorised, we check all research projects to make sure they all meet strict safety and quality standards, regulatory requirements and national guidance. We also check if they have been reviewed by a Research Ethics Committee (REC).

Studies seeking participants

Click here to find out about National Institute for Health Research clinical research studies and trials that are currently seeking local participants. You can search using a post code, location or look up a condition or drug name. Once you have located the relevant information you can follow the links to find further details about each specific study. If you would like to know more, please ask your doctor or health care professional about participation.

Information for researchers

We provide the research and development (R&D) management function in Somerset NHS Foundation Trust.

If you’re thinking of getting involved in a research project, or just want to explore an idea for a research project, contact us early in the process for advice on research management and governance requirements.

You will need to undertake specific training before starting work on clinical trials. We have detailed what you will need and links to the relevant websites, but please contact us to discuss your training needs, we are here to help.

We hope you find the information about what we do, the standards we work to, courses, events and how to get involved useful.