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Recent publications in Gut 1 ,2 have highlighted the beneficial role of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Clinical Research Network in supporting clinical gastroenterology research in the UK.3 On an European level, the European Clinical Research Infrastructures Network provides integrated support to multinational clinical research projects in partner countries. The overarching aim of the NIHR Clinical Research Network is to maximise clinical research delivery by providing the infrastructure that allows high-quality studies to be undertaken in the NHS. The support available encompasses many aspects of the study life-cycle, including study set-up, researcher training and aiding study delivery, for example by providing protected clinician research time and research nurse support at individual study sites in NHS institutions. All clinical gastroenterology research studies entered onto the NIHR Clinical Research Network Portfolio are eligible for support.3
The performance of the NIHR Clinical Research Network Portfolio is closely monitored using several High Level Objectives, one of which is increasing the proportion of studies that deliver in line with their planned delivery time and patient recruitment targets. The progress of each study during the recruitment phase is rated on a BRAG (black/red/amber/green) system, with studies deemed to be on target (‘green’) if recruitment is running at least 80% of that expected according to each study's self-determined recruitment schedule.4 Upon closure, studies which successfully recruited to their …
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