From 1 October, NIHR CLAHRC West will become the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) West. The National Institute for Health Research have awarded ARC West £9 million over five years, as part of a bigger award of £135 million to 15 ARC teams covering the whole of England. These will replace the existing 13 CLAHRC teams, as well as creating two new collaborations in the north east and south east.
What will ARC West do?
Like CLAHRC West, ARC West will do applied research projects with collaborators. Applied research aims to address the immediate issues facing the health and social care system.
The CLAHRC team have worked on diverse projects including evaluating patient safety tools and the roll out of an intervention to reduce cerebral palsy in premature babies with the West of England Academic Health Science Network (AHSN), exploring the experiences of Somali families affected by autism, creating harm reduction materials with people who inject drugs and improving how healthcare professionals respond to signs of domestic violence and abuse. For an idea of what these projects are like, see some of the highlights from CLAHRC West’s applied research projects from the last five years.
The funding will enable new research projects including forecasting demand in hospitals, increasing people’s physical activity levels, supporting people who self-harm and improving outcomes for children in care.
ARC West will be hosted by University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UH Bristol). It brings together universities, local authorities, NHS trusts, clinical commissioning groups, voluntary sector and community organisations in the West of England, alongside patients and members of the public, to focus on improving health and care for local people.
ARC West will also work with other ARCs and academic groups on projects with national and international reach.