Our main aim is to transfer new emergency medicine practices developed in the military frontline to the NHS to improve outcomes for all patients. In addition, the SRMRC takes findings from the science lab to the patient’s bedside to improve emergency medicine practice in the military and civilian setting. Since the Centre’s start in 2011, civilian and military scientists have worked alongside civilian and military clinicians in a variety of specialist areas to improve the care and treatment of trauma patients.
The Centre is jointly funded by the NIHR – the nation’s largest funder of health and care research – and the Ministry of Defence, the British government department in charge of putting into place the Government’s defence policy and the headquarters of the British Armed Forces. Additional ‘matched’ funding is also received from the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHBFT) and the University of Birmingham (UoB).
Multiple studies are run from this Centre all year round by scientists and academics, combined with a team of dedicated research nurses and administrative staff. Through this, the Centre is able to tackle some of the biggest questions in trauma. At any one time, over 30 clinical trials are being delivered by the SRMRC’s 24/7 research team. Two key examples of studies currently running include the RePHILL trial – asking which is best for a patient who needs to maintain their blood volume at the scene of the injury – blood or saline, and SIFTI-2 designed to look in-depth at what happens after people sustain a large burn in order to develop novel tests to identify patients who are likely to develop sepsis.
The Centre also benefits from its own Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement (PPIE) group. This is made up of former patients who have either suffered trauma or burn injury or have spent time in critical care as well as carers and members of the public. Their role is to provide feedback on any and all aspects of research from helping in the design of patient information sheets through to being a co-applicant on a grant bid. In 2018 the SRMRC appointed a dedicated PPI Lead to ensure that our valuable PPI group is supported and developed, to add value to all the work of the SRMRC.