to the UK Clinical Research Facility Network

UK Clinical Research Facilities Network
“David Bell Photographer www.someseedifferent.com

We hope this will provide information on the UKCRF Network to individuals working in research across the UK and we invite you to join us. We are keen to see the Network continue to grow, and expand activities in response to the needs of its membership.

Who We Are

Led by a Senior Management Team (SMT), the Network was awarded competitive funding in 2007. Our aim is to identify, develop and share systems for the delivery and management of operational activities across the UK clinical research and experimental medicine infrastructure including:

  • Sharing and dissemination of good practice
  • Creating a support network for existing and new CRFs, BRUs and BRCs
  • Developing and facilitating key, relevant projects known as Work Streams

Job Vacancy

Programme Manager - National Institute for Health Research Central Commissioning Facility - Twickenham

Closing Date: 30/05/2018

An exciting position has arisen for a Programme Manager to support the commissioning, monitoring and secretariat activities within the Infrastructure and Faculty team at the National Institute for Health Research Central Commissioning Facility (NIHR CCF).  The team manages around £375 million of the NIHR’s funding each year.   
The post-holder will play a key role in managing the day-to-day activity associated with the oversight of Infrastructure funding schemes and in the management of high profile funding competitions that will ensure the UK’s international competitiveness in the field of applied health research. The role offers significant exposure to both the commissioning and monitoring activities for the prestigious NIHR Research Infrastructure awards, including Collaborations for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care, Patient Safety Translational Research Centres and the Medtech and In-vitro Diagnostic Co-operatives. 
The Programme Manager will cover the full end-to-end process of research management, from launching new calls for applications through to the active monitoring of funded schemes and awards, and will require an ability to work collaboratively with other team members. The post provides the opportunity for exciting external liaison, with interfaces to UK government, academia, industry and the clinical community.

See here for more detail.

The 2018 UKCRF Network Annual Conference in Leeds

UK Clinical Research Facilities 14th Annual Conference 2018

'Seeing is Believing: Imaging and digital technologies in the 21st Century’

Registration for the 2018 Annual Conference is now open! Click here to visit  the registration link and download the conference programme.

headrow and town hall at night - Leeds City Council

The Conference will happen at the Leeds Royal Armouries between the 12th and 13th of July. General information about the Royal Armouries is available at 'Royal Armouries'. Remember to save the 12th and 13th July in your diary!

UK Clinical Research Facility Network 15th Annual Conference 2019

We are delighted to announce that the 2019 UKCRF Network Annual Conference will be hosted by Nottingham CRF. For information about the CRF in Nottingham click here. Watch this space for new information about the 2019 conference.

For more information, please contact ukcrf.network@nihr.ac.uk.



   "How the UKCRF Network supports CRFs to facilitate pioneering early phase research."

    An interview with Karen French.

The UK Clinical Research Facility (UKCRF) Network brings together the essential experience and proven tools to support the delivery and operational management of experimental medicine organisations. Karen French, NIHR Sheffield Clinical Research Head of Operations, shares her experience of how utilising UKCRF Network tools has enabled Sheffield CRF to deliver NIHR Translational Research Collaboration (TRC) studies.

The NIHR Sheffield Clinical Research Facility was established as part of the second wave of CRFs in 2006 and supports clinical research across all health conditions within Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Our CRF is on two sites across the city.

In 2016 the UKCRF Network set the Experimental Medicine Collaboration Workstream an objective of supporting the NIHR Office for Clinical Research Infrastructure (NOCRI) in the delivery of studies through collaborations such as TRCs. These collaborations between leading universities and hospitals, work with the life sciences industry to tackle experimental medicine challenges in selected therapeutic themes through pioneering early phase research.

We were one of three CRFs to answer a call from the UKCRF Network looking for CRFs with the capacity, capability and expertise to support the delivery of respiratory and musculoskeletal TRC studies.

This led to Sheffield working closely with NOCRI and involved me taking a lead in managing study performance at our CRF and providing NOCRI and the UKCRF Network with regular updates on targets and performance.

Being part of the UKCRF Network has allowed us access to helpful tools such as the study intensity tool, induction programme and costing templates. These have enabled us to run an effective and efficient CRF and help build a reputation as a reliable partner for the delivery of experimental medicine studies. With the first respiratory and inflammation TRC study SoMOSA, we were able to complete set-up for this complex study and recruit our first patient within the 70 day timeframe.

Following the successful delivery of this first study, we have now taken on two more TRC studies, including the BEAT-Lupus study, where we were the first site to recruit a patient. After receiving positive feedback from NOCRI we hope to collaborate further in delivering pioneering industry led experimental medicine studies.

"Sheffield CRF is a great example of how a CRF can grow and develop through the support of the UKCRF Network. We initially worked with millennial CRFs to develop a business plan and learn from previous experience of developing a CRF. I’m proud to be part of such a transparent and collaborative network. Without the guidance that the UKCRF Network provided when we first set up, we wouldn’t be where we are today. 

Sheffield is now working hard to actively push forward workstream plans and participate in new initiatives, such as the TRC studies, to help drive the health and wealth agenda and expand the capacity and capability within our CRF to increase the volume and successful delivery of experimental medicine in the UK."

Karen French, Sheffield Clinical Research Facility Head of Operations.

CRF Brochure

Download the new CRF Brochure for an insight into how clinical research facilities (CRFs) support an expert workforce, create wealth, demonstrate an agile infrastructure and can power innovation in diagnostics and revolutionising treatments to improve patients’ lives.

Visit the new UKCRF Network Hub Site at http://ukcrfn.nihr.ac.uk - for a username and password see Contacts.