Reach West: facilitating participation in research by patients and the public
It is often difficult for researchers to find suitable people for research studies, even for common conditions, and many people would participate in research if they knew a suitable study was available. The aim of Reach West is to bridge this gap by matching interested people to high quality research projects. This greatly reduces the time it takes to carry out research studies and to bring new treatments into routine use.
Reach West will provide a safe and secure way for people interested in research to find out about NHS and university approved health research projects that are relevant to them. Individuals will give prospective consent to be re-contacted about research for which they may be eligible. This includes providing consent for medical record linkage in order to identify suitable potential participants.
Reach West is a partnership between NIHR CLAHRC West, NHS trusts in the West and the University of Bristol to develop an online research participation register for people living in the region. People who would like to take part in clinical and health research will be able to register so that they can be contacted if a suitable research study comes up. They will then decide if they would like to participate in the study.
Reach West will play a central role in seeking to increase recruitment to medical and health care studies. This in turn will speed up the development and roll-out of effective health care treatments which are expected to result in improvements in health outcomes, patient care and experience.