GP practice in Peterborough area wins national award for excellence in research

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A GP practice near Peterborough has won a prestigious national award honouring the enormous contribution it has made in delivering research to find new treatments and care pathways for NHS patients.

Wansford and Kings Cliffe Practice was announced as the winner of this year’s Clinical Research Practice award at the Royal College of General Practitioners’ (RCGP) Annual Conference held in London.

Dr Amrit Takhar (second from left) with award presenters: Prof Amanda Howe, Dr Nicholas Thomas and Prof Carolyn Chew-Graham

Dr Amrit Takhar (second from left) with award presenters: Prof Amanda Howe, Dr Nicholas Thomas and Prof Carolyn Chew-Graham

Dr Amrit Takhar, senior partner and research lead, collected the award on behalf of the team.

The awards, run jointly by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and the RCGP for members of the college, recognise research active NHS GPs and practices that are demonstrating excellence and innovation in delivering NIHR research.

Dr Takhar’s team at Wansford and Kings Cliffe Practice have managed to give more than 1,500 patients the opportunity to take part in research, recruiting participants to more than 60 clinical studies in the past two decades. In an effort to develop its research even further, it has now joined a cluster of practices in the area which are collectively staffed by two dedicated research nurses and a trials coordinator.

Along with developing his own interests in MedTech and cardiovascular research, Dr Takhar also holds the posts of primary care lead for the NIHR’s Clinical Research Network in the Eastern region, and clinical research and cardiovascular lead for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

Dr Takhar said of the win: “We are thrilled to win this national award recognising the work done in our rural GP practice. I am passionate about doing research for patient benefit.

“None of the research would be possible without support from our amazing team at Wansford led by Lorraine Archer, specialist cardiology nurse, and supported by Sam Wright, rheumatology nurse, and Laura Costello, our trials administrator.

“The research team themselves are hugely supported by the wider primary care team in the surgery and integrated pharmacy. We hope to move to develop more of our own research ideas in collaborating with a range of partners.

“Finally, I would like to thank all of our patients who have willingly taken part in research studies to help advance medical science. They are now also helping design future studies.”

Professor Phil Evans, NIHR CRN national specialty lead for primary care, said: “This is now the fourth year our very successful RCGP NIHR Research Awards have taken place, and once again the winners have demonstrated remarkable innovation and delivery of primary care research within their practices which has significantly contributed to CRN recruitment over the years.”