STRUCTURE: NHS Bristol and partners in the Bristol Research and Innovation Group for Health (BRIG-H) are drawing up plans for a research centre.

It is envisaged the centre would be similar to the five academic health science centres approved by the Department of Health in 2009 in Cambridge, Imperial, King’s, Manchester and University College London. The centres are designed to encourage healthcare delivery and higher education to work together on their strategic goals. BRIG-H includes the University of Bristol,University of West of England, University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, North Bristol NHS Trust, NHS Bristol, Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust.

A report on the plans to NHS Bristol’s board states: “We are now considering ways of customising the academic health science centre model to make it appropriate for Bristol, recognising that there will not be a further round of Department of Health designation and funding. 

“Unlike the five designated centres, Bristol’s focus will not be primarily or exclusively on bio-medical sciences.  Our strengths strongly lie in public health, and health services research including cardiovascular science, neurosciences, mental health and primary care.”