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Clinical research team at Sunderland Eye Infirmary honoured

Clinical research team at Sunderland Eye Infirmary honoured

City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust has been honoured for the contribution of its Ophthalmology research team at Sunderland Eye Infirmary to improving the health and treatment options available to patients worldwide. 

The Trust was selected by global biopharmaceutical solutions organisation Syneos Health as a recipient of its Site Appreciation Award, which recognises the value of clinical research sites as partners in the clinical research process.

In nominating the Trust, Syneos Health clinical operations team members highlighted the excellent focus on patient safety, the collaborative and responsive approach, strong teamwork and communication, and high-quality data capture.

Consultant Ophthalmologist Deepali Varma is Deputy Director of Innovation for South Tyneside and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trusts and Speciality Group Lead for Ophthalmology for the National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Network North East and North Cumbria (NIHR CRN NENC). Mrs Varma said: “We are very proud indeed to receive such a prestigious award. It is fantastic to have this acknowledgment of the excellence of our work, which is supported by the NIHR CRN NENC and our own Research and Innovation Department.”

Melanie Johnson, Executive Director of Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professionals for South Tyneside and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trusts, added: “I am delighted that the dedication and hard work of our Ophthalmology research team has been recognised with this accolade which reinforces the enviable reputation of both of our Trusts for research, not only locally and regionally but also nationally and internationally, which is leading to better treatments and improved care for patients.”

This latest award for Sunderland Eye Infirmary follows its success in winning the Judges’ Special Award in the Bayer Ophthalmology Honours 2017 for high quality clinical research using a collaborative team approach.

In the last few years, 10 of its 20 clinicians have participated as principal investigators in over 30 global and national commercial and non-commercial clinical trials through the National Institute for Health Research. Currently, it is involved in several clinical trials on common vision-threatening eye conditions including Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and diabetic eye disease, both leading causes of blindness - the former in the ageing population and the latter among people of working age.  

Syneos Health is a fully integrated biopharmaceutical solutions organisation, which shares insights, uses the latest technologies and applies advanced business practices to speed the delivery of important therapies to patients.