Two of the Bradford district's hospital trusts are helping to spearhead a rise in clinical research, according to new figures.
And their place at the forefront of such research is bringing the latest and most exciting treatments to the district.
The new figures, released by the National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Network, the research delivery arm of the NHS, reveals that more than half of NHS Trusts across the country have increased the number of studies they are carrying out.
Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has increased from 150 studies in 2012-13 to 165 in 2013-14, while Airedale NHS Foundation Trust is working on 44 research studies, up from the previous year's number of 32.
Out of the 251 Trusts in the league table, Bradford is in 28th position and Airedale is123rd.
Director of the Bradford Institute for Health Research based at the Bradford Royal Infirmary, Dr John Wright said: "We know health care is improving and we are getting better drugs and treatments but there's a long way to go yet. Research is one of the key solutions, it really is fundamental to getting better treatment for the people of Bradford, the UK and internationally.
"Research puts us at the cutting edge of new treatments that are coming up. We are one of the leading centres nationally for clinical research, giving us access to the latest and most exciting new treatments for health problems. We try to get everyone in the hospital actively involved and to approach patients to join clinical trials. There's good evidence that shows patients get a higher quality of care in departments where there is research ongoing."
Current research trials include a childhood obesity study recruiting pregnant mums, one of the first in the world looking at new asthma treatments and investigating ways of how life expectancy can be improved for older frail people.
Carole Paley, head of research and innovation at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, said: “In the last year, we’ve boosted our research activity at Airedale by 25 per cent as well as broadened the work across more conditions and specialities.
"More doctors and nurses are now research-active and we have put a greater emphasis on the need for evidence-based practice. Patients and the public are also more aware that Airedale is taking part in clinical trials and more people are being offered the chance to take part in them.”
Jonathan Sheffield, chief executive officer of the NIHR Clinical Research Network, said: “It’s great to see a real appetite for research in Bradford. I would like to thank all the patients and carers who have taken part in research, and thereby made a contribution to improving NHS treatments for everyone.
“I would also like to congratulate the Trusts in Bradford for increasing their number of studies. We know that research is something that patients really value and these Trusts are creating the opportunities for patients to get involved.”
Patients and carers who want to find out more about clinical research can visit: www.nhsresearch.org