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Health and Research & Education Collaboration

25 September 2014 at 2:51pm

Collaboration between Universities and the NHS is fundamental to all aspects of clinical education and research. There are however recent initiatives to develop this further:


In England the Department of Health has designated 5 Academic Health Science Centres (AHSCs) following a bidding process in late 2008 and early 2009. AHSCs were proposed in the Darzi review ‘High Quality Care for All’ to bring together a small number of health and academic partners to focus on world-class research, teaching and patient care. In April 2013 the Department of Health invited bids for AHSC status for the 5 years from April 2014, including the requirement for existing AHSCs to bid to continue. The existing AHSCs were reconfirmed and Oxford ASHN was also successful and established from April 2014.

The six AHSCs are:

Presentations on AHSC plans have been presented to the NHS-HE Forum:


Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) were proposed in the Innovation, Health and Wealth, Accelerating Adoption & Diffusion in the NHS report which was published in autumn 2011, coinciding with a supporting recommendation in the Strategy for UK Life Sciences launched at about the same time (see also the one year on update on this). The recommendation was to build on the success of the AHSCs but make the same approach available to all areas of England.

National guidance on the design and designation of AHSNs was published in June 2012. Following expressions of interest and then submission of full applicatios, the designation of the 15 AHSNs was announced by NHS England on 23rd May 2013 covering all areas of England.

The AHSNs are:

Research Collaborations

In Scotland there is a Life Sciences SCOTLAND.

Similary there is a strong focus on research collaboration in Wales e.g. The National Instititute for Social Care and Health Research Academic Health Science Collaboration (NISCHR AHSC)

See also research collaborations and networks through the National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Networks