The National Research Ethics Service accepts no
responsibility for the accuracy or suitability of linked content. This
listing does not indicate our endorsement of the relevant organisations
or the views expressed by their websites and onward links.
Please also refer to our Guidance page for links to guidelines, policies and standards.
Department of Health
A UK Government Department, committed to improving the quality and
convenience of care provided by the NHS and social services. Its work
includes setting national standards, shaping the direction of health
and social care services and promoting healthier living.
Gene Therapy Advisory Committee (GTAC)
Has UK-wide responsibility for the ethical oversight of proposals
to conduct clinical trials involving gene or stem cell therapies. Also
advises Ministers on the development and use of gene and stem cell
therapies and works with other Government agencies with an interest in
Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority (HFEA)
The UK's independent regulator overseeing the use of gametes and
embryos in fertility treatment and research. Also licenses fertility
clinics and centres carrying out in vitro fertilisation (IVF), other
assisted conception procedures and human embryo research.
Human Tissue Authority (HTA)
Set up to regulate the removal, storage, use and disposal of human
bodies, organs and tissue for a number of Scheduled Purposes – such as
research, transplantation, and education and training – set out in the
Human Tissue Act 2004. The HTA is the Competent Authority under the EU
Tissue and Cells Directive for regulating human application
establishments and is also responsible for approving donation of solid
organs and bone marrow from living donors.
Information Commissioner’s Office
The UK's independent authority set up to promote access to official information and to protect personal information.
A national advisory group, funded by the National Institute for
Health Research (NIHR). Supports and promotes active public
involvement in NHS, public health and social care research. INVOLVE was
established to promote public involvement in research, in order to
improve the way that research is prioritised, commissioned, undertaken,
communicated and used, and believes that the active involvement of the
public in the research process leads to research that is more relevant
to people and is more likely to be used. (Formerly known as Consumers
in NHS Research).
James Lind Library
The James Lind Library has been created to help people understand
fair tests of treatments in health care. The principles of fair tests
are explained in essays containing many examples. To illustrate the
evolution of fair tests of treatments from 1550 BCE to the present, the
library contains key passages and images from manuscripts, books and
journal articles. The website also contains many commentaries,
biographies, portraits, doctoral theses and other relevant material
about the history of fair tests.
A free, downloadable 100-page book ‘Testing Treatments: better research for better health care’ (by Imogen Evans, Hazel Thornton and Iain Chalmers) was published by the British Library in 2006.
Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA)
Enhances and safeguards the health of the public by ensuring that
medicines and medical devices work and are acceptably safe.
Underpinning all its work lie robust and fact-based judgements to
ensure that the benefits to patients and the public justify the risks.
Medical Research Council (MRC)
A publicly-funded organisation dedicated to improving human health
through world-class medical research. Support researchs across the
biomedical spectrum, from fundamental lab-based science to clinical
trials, and in all major disease areas. Works closely with the NHS and
the UK Health Departments to deliver its mission, and gives a high
priority to research that is likely to make a real difference to
clinical practice and the health of the population. Publishes material
to assist medical researchers.
NHS Choices: Find services
Provides information on NHS services and where to find them, including details on Strategic Health Authorities and hospitals.
NHS Research and Development Forum
A network for those involved in managing and supporting R&D in
health and social care. Aims to improve the environment for research in
health and social care by facilitating and encouraging sharing of best
practice, and working with other organisations. Membership of the Forum
is free and open to anyone involved in or interested in managing and
planning research and development in the NHS or social care. Its
website also provides some direction on R&D matters for researchers
wishing to undertake research within the NHS.
Nuffield Council on Bioethics
Examines ethical issues raised by new developments in biology and
medicine. Established by the Nuffield Foundation in 1991, the Council
is an independent body, funded jointly by the Foundation, the Medical
Research Council and the Wellcome Trust. Has achieved an international
reputation for addressing public concerns, and providing independent
advice to assist policy makers and stimulate debate in bioethics.
Patient Information Advisory Group (PIAG)
Established to provide advice on issues of national significance
involving the use of patient information (data) and to oversee
arrangements created under Section 251 of the NHS Act 2006 (originally
enacted under Section 60 of the Health and Social Care Act 2001). PIAG
was replaced by the National Information Governance Board for Health
and Social Care under and was formally wound up on 31 December 2008.
Responsibility for administering Section 251 powers transferred to the National Information Governance Board on 1 January 2009, which has established a new committee to administer applications on its behalf.
People in Research
Helps members of the public make contact with organisations
that want to actively involve them in clinical research. For example,
by helping to decide what gets researched or possibly carrying out part
of the research.
United States Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP)
Provides leadership in the protection of the rights, welfare, and
wellbeing of subjects involved in research conducted or supported by
the US Department of Health and Human Services . Helps ensure this by
providing clarification and guidance, developing educational programs
and materials, maintaining regulatory oversight, and providing advice
on ethical and regulatory issues in biomedical and behavioral research.
World Medical Association (WMA)
An international organisation representing physicians. Provides
ethical guidance to physicians through its declarations, resolutions
and statements, which cover a wide range of subjects, including an
International Code of Medical Ethics, the rights of patients, and
research on human subjects.
A registry of federally and privately supported clinical trials
conducted in the United States and around the world. Provides
information about a trial's purpose, who may participate, locations,
and phone numbers for more details. This information should be used in
conjunction with advice from health care professionals.
European Clinical Trials Database (EudraCT)
A database of all clinical trials commencing in the European
Community from 1 May 2004 onwards. It has been established in
accordance with Directive 2001/20/EC. Allows sponsors access to the
EudraCT application in order to obtain a EudraCT number, and to
complete, save, and print a pdf version of the clinical trial
IFPMA Clinical Trials Portal
This service, provided by the International Federation of
Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations, allows you to search for
comprehensive information on ongoing clinical trials (registry) and
results of completed trials (database) conducted by the innovative
National Research Register Archive (NRR)
The National Research Register was a public database of ongoing and
recently completed research projects funded by, or of interest to, the
UK’s National Health Service (NHS). It has now been archived and a
searchable copy of the records that were held in the National Research
Register (NRR) Projects Database can be found on this website. It was
created using the final issue of the NRR published in October 2007,
based on records collected up to September 2007.