Five-year strategic plan aims to make research everyone’s business

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust has recently published a five-year strategic plan which sets out the organisation’s ambition to become a leader for research quality, capability and capacity across all healthcare professions.

The strategic plan was authored by Dr Caroline Alexander, chair of the clinical academic research committee for healthcare professionals and lead clinical academic for therapies, and Professor Mary Wells, chair of the nursing and midwifery research committee and lead nurse for research at the Trust.

“This is an exciting time for the development of research and clinical academic opportunities for healthcare professionals at Imperial,” Dr Caroline Alexander said.

Dr Alexander and Professor Wells aim to expand research opportunities for all healthcare professionals at the Trust, including nurses, midwives, allied health professionals, healthcare scientists, clinical psychologists, clinical research practitioners, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.

“Research is core to the NHS principles of maintaining the highest standards of excellence and professionalism, and it improves the quality of care, experience and outcomes for our patients,” Professor Wells said. “We want to engage every member of staff in research, whether they are supporting or raising awareness of research opportunities across the Trust for patients and staff, or whether they are conducting their own research or leading a research programme. We would like to hear from anyone who wants to play a part in this.”

The strategy is part of a series of initiatives to support healthcare professionals to engage in research. Imperial College London has recently launched the Healthcare Professional Academic Group (HPAG) which will form an academic hub for researchers from any of the healthcare professions outside of medicine. The recent North West London Research Symposium, held at Imperial College London, brought together more than 100 healthcare professionals who presented their research and learned more about opportunities to develop their research further. An annual research fellowship programme, sponsored by Imperial Health Charity and NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, is now accepting applications for autumn 2019. Additional research training opportunities are in development – more information is available through Imperial College London’s clinical academic training office (CATO).

To learn more about research opportunities for healthcare professionals at the Trust, read the strategy, watch this video about doing research at the Trust, or contact the CATO at