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To encourage patients and carers to ask their doctors about the NHS research they can take part in, the NIHR is marking ICTD with its 'OK to ask' campaign.

NIHR 'OK to ask' campaign website

You can support the campaign by visiting the NIHR's Facebook page and passing the message on to other patients that it’s ‘Ok to ask about clinical research’ that might help them and others like them.

The Facebook page will also provide you with details of the many events happening at NHS hospitals and NIHR facilities across the country to mark the day.

 Research: it couldn’t happen without you

Since 2006 NIHR has invested in world-class research facilities so that the UK is now a global leader in the search for new treatments and therapies to help patients. 

The NHS has a duty to advance and promote this research.  And under the NHS Constitution patients have a right to information about appropriate research they might possibly take part in.

In the last year 630,000 people across the UK volunteered to take part in a clinical trial or study.  They do so because they want the chance to possibly benefit from new treatments.  But also to help others like them, now and in the future, with their condition.   As James Elliott who has diabetes says here:

“My quality of life is a direct effect of the research carried out by the Hospital. I now understand that as well as research for the future, research is now, and it helps real people like me to have real lives. Am I totally cured? No. Will I ever be totally cured? No. But am I enjoying life again? Yes I am!”

Through our ‘OK to ask’ campaign we want many more people like James to choose research. 

Much of the life-saving clinical research carried out in the NHS could not happen without hundreds of thousands of patients and carers stepping forward every year to take part. Those who volunteer in this way report a range of benefits and are pleased to be potentially helping others like them with the same condition. NIHR's national 'OK to ask' campaign taking place on International Clinical Trials Day is about encouraging many more people to ask their doctor about being in research as part of their care and treatment and highlighting that they have a right to information about 'relevant and appropriate' research under the NHS Constitution.

- Simon Denegri, Chair, INVOLVE