Clinical research facility gives over 500 patients hope in its first year

United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust’s new clinical research facility is celebrating its first birthday and the news that it has recruited more than 500 patients onto trials over the last year.

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Patients at the Lincolnshire clinical research facility at Pilgrim Hospital, Boston, say the opportunity to try pioneering treatments has given them hope and a second chance at life.

Grandmother of two Linda Storr has just returned from a family holiday to the Lake District where she climbed four of the highest mountains.

The computer science teacher said: “I was diagnosed with a type of blood cancer and I was having a really bad reaction to the conventional treatments. I was so scared this was going to be it for the rest of my life. I was so breathless and poorly.

“There is no way I could have climbed the mountains before my drug trial. Thanks to the support of the Lincolnshire clinical research facility at Boston I have got my life back and I am cherishing it. We all take our health for granted and yet without it we cannot do anything.”

Linda knows she will have to keep taking the drugs for the rest of her life, or until an alternative treatment is found. She added: “The team in Boston were amazing, it was like having your own personal support network, but you are firmly in the centre helping to make the decisions. I will always be eternally grateful and will never be able to thank them enough for what they have given me.”

Clinical research in Lincolnshire’s hospitals has gone from strength to strength in recent years, with the number of clinical trials and studies carried out in United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust Hospitals rising all the time. Last year across the Trust almost 2,000 people took part in 198 trials, including the 541 patients at the Boston clinical research facility.

Areas of current research includes oncology, haematology, stroke, cardiology, paediatrics, dermatology, diabetes, midwifery, ophthalmology, respiratory, anaesthesia, general surgery gastroenterology and orthopaedics.

Director of Lincolnshire clinical research facility professor Tanweer Ahmed said: “It has been our busiest year on record thanks to all of the hard work from our teams at Lincoln, Grantham and Boston. The new facility has enabled us to offer trials to even more patients, but without our teams across all sites none of this would be possible.

“Hearing stories like Linda’s reminds us of how important our work is and the difference we can make to people’s lives.”

Another patient added: “When I was asked if I wanted to take part in a drug trial, I didn’t need to go away and think about it, I said yes straight away. With these research trials you are giving us a second chance and hope and that is what we live for.”

For more information about the work of the Lincolnshire Clinical Research Facility and to see a fun cartoon the team has commissioned to help spread awareness of clinical research visit: