NIHR Alder Hey Clinical Research Facility

NIHR Alder Hey Clinical Research Facility


The NIHR Alder Hey Clinical Research Facility (CRF) is a state-of-the-art dedicated Clinical Research Facility, operated and housed within Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust (Alder Hey), which is one of Europe’s largest, busiest and most iconic children’s hospitals.

Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust is committed to creating a healthier future for children and young people – and they are at the heart of everything we do. Based in Liverpool, we are the busiest children and young people’s NHS Trust in the UK and have been a world leader in healthcare and research for over 100 years. We have a determined focus on delivering outstanding care, with the best people, working in partnership, alongside game-changing research and innovation. In 2016 our dedicated research, innovation and education centre was completed, which sits alongside the hospital as part of our wider vision of an Alder Hey in the Park Campus.

Home to researchers, academics and industry partners, this Facility supports vital collaboration for better healthcare for children and young people in the future. We are here for children and young people. We improve their health and emotional wellbeing by providing the highest quality innovative care, and by working in partnership with all to improve the lives of all children and young people.

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Location: The NIHR Alder Hey Clinical Research Facility is located near the main Hospital entrance, on the 1st floor, above the Outpatients Department.  The nearest route to the CRF is via the staircase/lifts to the left of the Outpatients Department.

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Inspired by children and young people

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Research in the CRF takes the whole family into consideration with a dedicated Patient and Public Engagement Team. This maximises trial compliance and ensures our young people have a voice and are research aware. Alder Hey CRF has extensive experience of engaging and involving children, young people and families in the design and conduct of clinical trials and health research in paediatrics. The Alder Hey CRF Patient and Public Involvement Strategy has local, national and international reach and work with children and families in a number of ways:

  • Work in partnership with children and young people and families through the forum of a Young Person’s Advisory Group (GenerationR) and Parent, Carer Research Forum
  • Engage, inform, educate and stimulate thinking about health research with children and families
  • Listen and act upon patient and family experiences of research participation
  • Promote the active involvement of children and families in the design and conduct of experimental and early phase research in children

Studies conducted on the CRF are done so to strict Good Clinical Practice (GCP) standards. Sitting in the heart of Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, it is located close to critical care, medical inpatient facilities and supported by clinical support services. This means Alder Hey is providing the highest possible quality environment for safety, clinical and research governance.

Clinical Research Facility Service Evaluation

Patients and parents/carers: we would like to hear about your experiences of the NIHR Alder Hey CRF. Please take the CRF survey using the following link...

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Research Themes

Research taking place within the CRF covers all specialties within the hospital, however priority areas include four Experimental Themes and three Experimental Clusters, each led by Theme Leads as detailed below:

Experimental Themes

  • Inflammation – Prof Christian Hedrich
  • Infection – Prof Paul McNamara
  • Oncology – Dr Lisa Howell
  • Neurosciences – Prof Conor Mallucci

Experimental Clusters

  • Clinical Pharmacology and Dose optimization – Dr Dan Hawcutt
  • Formulations – Louise Bracken
  • Innovation in Devices - Mr Iain Hennessey
Research Collaborations

The CRF team provides an outreach role, working with clinical teams in Paediatric Intensive Care, Oncology, A&E and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Liverpool Women’s Hospital

In addition we work in collaboration with the team at the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospital NHS Trust Clinical Research Unit (RLBUHT CRU) to offer a “life-course” platform for research in the city of Liverpool and across the region.

Importantly the CRF works in partnership with the academic sector, including the Faculties of Health & Life Sciences and Science & Engineering at the University of Liverpool; School of Pharmacy & Biomolecular Sciences at Liverpool John Moores University and the School of Pharmacy & Biomedical Sciences at the University of Central Lancashire to design and deliver research studies.

For more details, please contact:
Matthew Bickerstaff, NIHR Alder Hey Clinical Research Facility Operational Manager

Notice for NIHR studies

Are you publishing following a study conducted at the Alder Hey CRF? Please use the following statement as this is required by the NIHR:

This is a summary of independent research funded by [name of research funder] and carried out at the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Alder Hey Clinical Research Facility. The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the [name of research funder], NHS, the NIHR or the Department of Health. Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement (PPIE)

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