Research teams at the RUH in Bath are taking part in important national and international studies into COVID-19 and looking at possible treatments for people affected.
The RUH Trust has joined others across the UK in answering Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty’s call for urgent collaboration into investigating the disease.
He wrote to every NHS Trust in the country to encourage efforts to enrol patients into nationally prioritised clinical trials.
In the letter, the country’s five most senior doctors highlighted the crucial role of gathering reliable evidence to combat the global pandemic.
The UK is now running clinical trials in primary care, hospital and intensive care settings.
At the RUH, a large international study has been open since the start of the pandemic, gathering information from positive COVID-19 patients that may help scientists to understand more about the virus.
There are also a number of studies going on in the RUH’s Intensive Care Unit, involving confirmed COVID-19 patients, some to trial treatments and another which aims to identify genes that may make some people more unwell.
A clinical trial has also begun across the whole RUH Trust, trying out drugs used for different viruses with the aim of identifying possible treatments to help patients in their recovery.
Dr Kelly Spencer, RUH Research Manager, Operations, said: “We’re really proud to be a research-active hospital and proud to be participating in these research studies.
“It’s essential that we learn as much as we can, as soon as we can. There has been a great effort to accelerate the set-up of these trials, working with the clinicians, pharmacy and other support departments and we thank them for their cooperation in these busy times.
“We’re looking at treatments that are already in use for other conditions, like anti-viral drugs or drugs that help the immune system to better fight disease, to see if any of these are effective against coronavirus.
“We’re not expecting to find a cure, but we do hope that these treatments may help patients to recover more quickly from coronavirus or reduce their stay in hospital.”