Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is pleased to announce that several members of our staff have been recognised for their outstanding work in research and innovation.
Alison Birtle, Consultant Oncologist has won the prestigious award of Clinical Research Practitioner of the Year in the North West Coast Research and Innovation Awards this year.
Alison said: “Research should never be an optional extra – every patient should have the opportunity of being considered for a trial appropriate to their medical condition as that is the way we improve the treatment for them and for the patients of the future. I am so pleased to have been named as research practitioner of the year.”
Alison was nominated by her colleague, Stephanie Cornthwaite, Senior Research Nurse at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals. Stephanie said: “I believe that, for all the hard work and dedication that Alison shows to supporting research, she most definitely deserves this award. Alison works hard to empower patients to access research, and show everyone that research should be part of daily working life, not an added extra.”
Jacqueline Pirmohamed, Chief Operating Officer at the Clinical Research Network North West Coast said: “Dr Alison Birtle from Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, is a worthy winner of the Clinical Research Practitioner of the year award. She has worked tirelessly to pursue the effective delivery of research to all patients within her specialty across the NHS. Her commitment to the delivery of research across Lancashire is palpable. Her recent trial ‘POUT’ (Peri-operative chemotherapy or surveillance in upper tract urothelial cancer) which she led as Chief Investigator will change how urothelial cancer patients are treated in the future. This is the largest clinical trial conducted worldwide in this type of upper tract urothelial cancer. Its success was due to the leadership and tenacity of Dr Birtle and her team and the patients who entered the study.
She is a worthy winner of this award.” Deborah Williamson, Consultant Oncologist was also named as a finalist of the Clinical Research Rising Star of the Year award at the ceremony. Deborah said: “I am passionate that we all need to show an interest and become involved in research. I am delighted to be part of the colorectal team at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals, who are motivated to involve patients in surgical as well as oncology trials. This has been key to our success in improving research awareness and recruitment to trials amongst our patients. I am so happy to have been named as a runner up for this award.”
Finally, our Clinical Research Facility was a finalist in the Clinical Research Site of the Year award. The facility, based at Royal Preston Hospital, is one of only 23 NIHR (National Institute for Health Research) clinical research facilities in the country and is a collaboration between Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust and Lancaster University.
The centre plays a hugely important role in discovering new treatments and improving care for our patients. Nichola Verstraelen, Manager of the Clinical Research Facility at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals said: “We are so pleased to have been recognised for all of the hard work that has been put into developing this facility. Without the three partners, it would not have been possible. The dedicated staff within these organisations contribute towards world class research. With our partners, we are looking forward to leading on ground breaking research.”
Karen Partington, Chief Executive said: “Research is extremely important to us at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals to enable us to offer our patients and their families the high quality care they deserve. We are absolutely thrilled to have had so much recognition for our fantastic staff at the North West Coast Research and Innovation awards this year.”