Take part in a mock clinical trial – involving biscuits!

Michelle Stephens

Michelle Stephens

Members of the public and patients at Blackpool Victoria Hospital are being invited to take part in a mock clinical trial on Friday, May 20, to celebrate International Clinical Trials Day.

The day is celebrated around the world to commemorate the first clinical trial on scurvy led by James Lind in 1747. Since that first clinical trial, medicine has grown and developed thanks to breakthroughs in research.

The research team at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals, along with members from the Research Patient and Carer Panel, will be raising awareness of research in the NHS and more importantly some of the studies open at the Trust and the breakthroughs that patients have helped with.

The research team and panel members will be having a stand in the Mezzanine level of the main reception at Blackpool Victoria Hospital as well as a stand in the Outpatients of the Cardiology Department  from 11.30am to 2.30pm and will be talking about their work and the different ways people can get involved. The Clinical Research Centre, the hub for research in the Trust, will be open at these times for guided tours.

On the mezzanine level, there will also be a demonstration of how research works through a mock clinical trial, ‘The Biscuit Trial – Rich Tea or Hobnobs, which are better for dunking? A randomised control trial’.

Volunteers will be told about the study, given an information sheet and asked to consent. They will then be randomised to receive either a rich tea or hobnob biscuit. They will be asked to dunk their biscuit for 5 seconds and the results will be recorded. This will give people the chance to see the consent process and what it is like participating in a trial.

Michelle Stephens, Head of Research and Development at the Trust, said: “Each year we celebrate International Clinical Trials Day and it is a great way to demonstrate to patients and members of public our work.

“We would love to see people come to our stands and visit the Clinical Research Centre and see what we do as well as get involved in the Mock Trial.”

Blackpool Teaching Hospitals is highly research active with over 12,500 patients recruited into studies since 2008 with over 100 studies open at any time.

Research studies take place in many of the Trust’s departments including Women and Children, Oncology, Cardio Vascular, Stroke, Diabetes, Gastroenterology, Microbiology, Emergency Medicine, Critical Care, Haematology, Oncology, Respiratory and Orthopaedics.

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