The results of the successful asthma arm of the Salford Lung Study (SLS) have been announced.
The SLS, sponsored by GSK, examined the safety and effectiveness of a new treatment for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma.
The study was placed in Salford due to the region’s existing infrastructure of integrated electronic health medical records. It was delivered in partnership with NorthWest EHealth Ltd (NWEH), The University of Manchester, Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, CK Aspire, Salford CCG, University Hospital South Manchester, South Manchester CCG and NIHR Clinical Research Network: Greater Manchester. This large collaborative effort involved over 2,800 consenting patients supported by 80 GP practices and 130 pharmacies in Salford and the surrounding Greater Manchester area.
The study relied on bespoke software, developed by NWEH Ltd and securely hosted within the NHS network that integrated the electronic medical records of consented patients across all of their everyday interactions with their GPs, pharmacists and hospitals. This allowed inclusion of a broad population of patients in a real-life setting, embracing a novel approach to clinical trial design.
Conventional RCTs are usually conducted following strict inclusion criteria, which often exclude those patients with other multiple conditions. The SLS was designed to include such patients, providing a substantial amount of data that is highly relevant to everyday clinical practice and is therefore representative of a much wider population.
NWEH’s Linked Database System allowed close monitoring of patients’ safety in near real-time, but with minimal intrusion into their lives.
Professor Martin Gibson, NorthWest EHealth Chief Executive, said: “This is not about Big Data, this is about understanding the way patients interact with medications in their everyday lives. Our unique technology supports understanding of NHS data to bring the right drugs to market quicker. In addition, this technology is not limited to the UK but could also be applicable to established digitalised health economies across the globe.”
The final results from the Salford Lung Study were announced by GSK on 5 May 2017 .