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The North West Coast delivers support to over 30 clinical specialties. Specialty Leads have been appointed in each disease area to help provides specialist research knowledge and support to a specific disease area.

The purpose of the NIHR CRN North West Coast is to provide infrastructure and support to researchers within our geography to deliver high quality clinical research for the benefit of our local population. There are 30 clinical specialties which we support as these represent the key areas which reflect disease or condition prevalence in the UK. In the CRN NWC we have split the 30 clinical areas into 5 communities. Each community is managed by a Research Delivery Manager (RDM) who is supported by a Research Facilitator (RF)

  • RDM Jaime Halvorsen - RF Alex Bailey - Specialties: Cancer (including it's subspecialties), surgery, ear nose and throat, oral and dental
  • RDM Sarah Dyas - RF Georgina Hughes -  Specialties: Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes, Renal, Metabolic and Endocrine disorders, Ophthalmology, Stroke
  • RDM Julie Mugarza - RF James Connolly -  Specialties: Primary Care, Public Health & Health Services Research, Social Care
  • RDM Kirsty Pine -  RF Laura Dawson - Specialties: Children & Young people, Critical Care, Gastroenterology, Haematology, Genetics and Rare Disease, Reproductive Health and Childbirth, Anaesthesia Perioperative Medicine and Pain Management, Respiratory Disorders and Infection
  • RDM Karen Lomax - RF Carol Stanton - Specialties: Mental Health, Dementia, Ageing, Neuro and Degeneration, MSK, Dermatology
The NIHR supports research being delivered through 30 specialty therapy areas. Each specialty is made up of expert clinical leaders and practitioners who work at both national and local levels to ensure that studies are delivered successfully and to promote awareness of research opportunities for participants to take part in. The specialty groups also support the dialogue between the life sciences industry and charities to ensure the pipeline of research studies and to facilitate the involvement of participants to make research more effective. Visit the main NIHR website to find out what is happening nationally in the different specialties.


Supporting Research in Primary Care

We have a dedicated team that supports those who would like to get their primary care practice involved in clinical research.

The team is led by Julie Mugarza, Research Delivery Manager who can be contacted by email on or phone on 0151 331 5123.

There are also existing practices at Queens Square Medical Practice in Lancaster and Civic Medical Practice in Bebington, Wirral, Merseyside that are happy to provide advice and support to other practices thinking of becoming involved in clinical research.

The North West Coast Taskforce

The Clinical Research Network North West Coast (CRN NWC) Task Force offers NHS organisations in both primary & secondary care complimentary research nursing and administrative support to NIHR portfolio studies. The Task Force Team is a centrally based, multi-disciplinary team of research practitioners who provide skills to help deliver the NIHR portfolio of studies at our partner organisations.

We support both commercial and non-commercial portfolio activity across multiple specialities, divisions and settings. We are well-trained, agile, research practitioners who are deployed across the research network to support studies in meeting agreed targets within a given time frame.

The Task force Team is managed by the Research Matron, Sue Dowling, who allocates staff to work on studies at partner organisations on planned placements. This model provides an effective generic workforce which can be mobilised to respond to the demands of the NIHR portfolio, and allows us to place the required skills in the right place at the right time, for the benefit of our patients.

If you wish to request support from the Task Force team, please contact Sue Dowling on


Commercial Research on the North West Coast

Working with the UK's Life Science Industry

The Clinical Research Network, North West Coast is committed to working with the UK's Life Sciences Industry. In 2018 we have signed a deal with a global Clinical Research Organisation that will accelerate the introduction of new life saving medicine into the NHS. Commercial research has a rich pedigree in this area, we have achieved 4 Global Firsts in the last 2 years. The most recent of which was for the MEDIS* Trial being run by the Countess of Chester stroke team. In March 2018 the team were subsequently awarded the status of Hyper-acute Stroke Research Centre (HSRC) The are only a small number of HSRCs across the country and this achievement clearly demonstrated the value of being involved in both commercial and non commercial clinical research.

If you are a commercial organisation looking for trial sites in the North West or if you are a healthcare professional that would like to know more about commercial research in the North West Coast please contact our Industry Lead

* Magnetically Enhanced Diffusion For Ischaemic Stroke