Gosford Hill Medical Centre has always had a strong academic reputation, with longstanding links to the University of Oxford. It has been an established training practice for many years, and we usually have several junior doctors attached to the practice.
In addition to training, the practice is broadening its academic horizons and taking on more research projects which are run by the Thames Valley Primary Care Research Network. Many academic institutions such as the Universities of Oxford, Southampton, Cambridge, Nottingham and Bristol use the network to recruit suitable patients for their trials. These are purely academic trials run by universities, they are not commercial trials from pharmaceutical companies.
We are currently running between 5 to 10 trials at the surgery, and the practice lead is Dr Wallard. Some of these trials recruit patients by sending out letters to appropriate patients; some are ‘opportunistic’, which means the doctor you are seeing might mention them during a consultation if he or she thinks you would be right for a particular study. Most of the studies would not involve you taking new medicines, or anything that is ‘risky’.
We would never put pressure on any of our patients to join a trial, and you are always free to say no if a doctor suggests it or you receive a letter. However, we are very fortunate to have centres of international excellence such as the JR and the Churchill on our doorsteps, and if you can spare the time, it is studies like these which move medicine forward and potentially benefit all our children in the future.
We shall keep a list of active studies currently recruiting on our website. Dr Wallard is always happy to discuss any of the studies listed, so please contact the surgery if you are interested.