RDS News - May 2020

Welcome to the eBulletin from the Research Design Service South West (RDS SW), keeping you updated with the latest news, events and communications from the RDS and National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).
RDS South West and COVID-19 working practices

Work here at RDS South West is continuing remotely.  Currently, we are successfully advising clients either via videoconference or telephone, rather than holding meetings in person. Please continue to get get in touch if we can provide support for your research, whether or not it is related to COVID-19. 

Our Project Review Committee is still meeting via videoconference on a monthly basis and provides an excellent opportunity for researchers to obtain a critical review of a proposed grant application before this is sent to a funding body. The committee brings the benefit of seeing the proposal with “fresh eyes”, replicating as far as possible the way the real funding committee will consider the application. Contact us if you would like to submit your project for review.

Upcoming RDS SW events have been postponed, but we are working at ways to bring these to you online. If you have any questions about our response to COVID-19, please email us at: rds.sw@nihr.ac.uk
COVID-19 supporting your research

Our COVID-19 webpage continues to be regularly updated and is designed to provide a useful resource for RDS staff and researchers alike. You will find many resources including:
  • Rapid-calls
  • Open calls
  • Lists of evidence, research and trials
  • eLearning
New Patient Recruitment Centres to improve patient access to commercial clinical research across England

NHS patients will benefit from easier access to clinical research opportunities, following a £7 million government investment to launch five new regional Patient Recruitment Centres (PRCs) across England.

The five new centres are distributed across the country to provide opportunities for patients in regions across England who may not previously have been able to take part in cutting edge clinical studies.

During the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the new centres will also increase opportunities for patients to access trials assessing the latest potential treatments against COVID-19; in addition to trials across all other healthcare specialties. Find out more.
Supporting the restart of paused NIHR research activities

NIHR has developed a framework to guide the restarting of NIHR research activities which have been paused due to COVID-19. This is a guidance document to support local decision-making in working towards the restoration of a diverse and active portfolio of research funded and/or supported by the NIHR - including both non-COVID-19 research and important COVID-19 research which does not meet NIHR urgency criteria.

The key aims of the framework are to guide:
  • the restart of paused NIHR research that was underway in the health and care system prior to the COVID-19 ‘surge’,
  • the commencement of ‘new’ NIHR research, and 
  • the prioritisation of resources in the NIHR Clinical Research Network (CRN) and NIHR infrastructure more broadly. 
The framework sets out guiding principles, preconditions, study prioritisation, and local and national roles in implementing this ‘Restart Framework’. Find out more.
Latest funding calls and other opportunities

Funding deadline calendar
For an overview of NIHR calls and ongoing funding opportunities, please see our funding deadlines webpage.
Latest COVID-19 Rapid Calls

Cross UK funding call – Global Effort on COVID-19 (GECO) Health Research
First deadline 12.00pm, 22nd June 2020

MRC/AHRC/ESRC Adolescence, Mental Health and the Developing Mind: COVID-19 rapid knowledge mobilisation
Deadline: 12.00pm, 1 June 2020

MRC rapid-response rolling call
Open to 1 April 2021 – for projects that could lead to benefits within 12 months

Latest Funding Opportunities
Global Health Research Programme
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