Research is vital in understanding conditions and finding new treatments.

Research relies on:

  • People volunteering to get involved in studies and trials
  • Funding for studies and trials
  • People choosing research as a career option.

Due to Covid-19, many of our usual studies are on hold. There are still some opportunities to get involved online and you can still register your interest to be contacted about future opportunities.

The National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) is leading on strategy for researching Covid-19 and will be identifying new studies. Where possible, the Trust will endeavour to support research in this area as directed.

On this page, you can find out more about the different ways you can get involved with and support lifesaving research.

Use your experience to help others

In the past, being involved in research meant participating in a study designed by academic staff or clinicians, who might ask you to answer a questionnaire, give blood or maybe try a new medication.  

At West London NHS Trust, we believe if you’ve lived with mental illness, you can provide valuable expertise and insights into our research into mental health.

Patient and Public Involvement: a collaborative approach

We aim to carry out research with patients and the public. This is called Patient and Public Involvement (PPI).

PPI includes a number of stages of research:
  • Generating new ideas and proposals for research studies in the best interests of people living with mental illness
  • Sitting on the research ethics committee
  • Reviewing materials that will be given to research participants
  • Conducting the interviews with the participants.

In one recent study on which we worked in collaboration with Imperial College London, young people who’ve lived with mental illness were involved through most of the above research stages. Two young people were additionally trained in conducting interviews and data analysis and subsequently interviewed participants.

As well as participating in research, there’s a range of opportunities open to people who use the services our Trust provides.

Taking part in research can be an incredibly rewarding process that can help to improve our understanding of different disorders, make our services better, and develop new or more effective treatments.  

It can also help you to have a better understanding and management of your illness, and offers treatments or opportunities that can enhance your clinical care. We have a range of studies that are open to participants at West London with more opening every month. 

Please see our current studies for a selection of studies that are looking for participants. The National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) is leading on strategy for researching Covid-19 and will be identifying new studies. Where possible, the Trust will endeavour to support research in this area as directed.

We’re working with Discover to help improve healthcare treatments.

Research is vital. It saves lives. We’re working with Discover, a new way for you to get involved with health research at West London NHS Trust and across North West London.

You can support research and join North West London’s Health and Research Register to help improve healthcare treatments for yourself and others today.

It only takes a minute to register online

Often people who want to contribute to health research (whether or not they’re unwell) don’t know where to start or who to ask. Researchers have a similar problem: they want to improve healthcare, but sometimes can’t find people to participate in studies.

Discover is a way to bridge this gap, bringing the public and researchers together. It’s a register of adults (18 and over) living in North West London who are interested in health research and want to hear about health research opportunities that are relevant to them. The register is for both healthy people and those with a medical condition.

Find out more about the Discover research programme on the Imperial website.

Research you can get involved in ranges from surveys, to having your blood tested or even testing new, innovative medical devices and phone apps, to participating in clinical trials.

Even if you’ve joined the register, you can choose not to take part in a research study; being on the register just means you’ll have the opportunity.

Research can be a really rewarding career, with many opportunities for career development and the chance to have a real impact on people’s lives.

There are lots of different roles within research, from administration to more technical roles looking at data or even the effect of new medications and treatments as a researcher.

If you have research experience or a strong background in science or medicine, you could find work in clinical research.

Research could be a good career for you if you’re good at:

  • Speaking to people about their experiences
  • Analytical thinking
  • Carrying out work independently
  • Handling sensitive information
  • Communication: Gathering information, writing and presenting findings.

You don’t need to have this experience to work in research, there are lots of roles in administration and support areas where you don’t need a medical or scientific background.

Find out more about roles available at West London NHS Trust.