NorthWest EHealth are celebrating a world-first in real world evidence trials

Posted: Nov 18, 2015


With the prevalence of lung diseases affecting a large number of the population, particularly in the North West, the NHS comes under enormous strain, with the wider economy also impacted. Therefore finding effective new treatments for respiratory conditions such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is fundamental. 

The Salford Lung Study aims to explore the safety and effectiveness of a treatment for asthma and COPD in the real world compared to standard medications already available. Unlike many randomised controlled trials (RCTs) which might exclude some patients, for example those with additional conditions, the Salford Lung Study has few exclusion criteria, meaning that the study population is more representative of patients who may be prescribed the medicine in the real world.

The pioneering large scale trial was made possible through NorthWest EHealth’s collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline, the study sponsor. NWEH provided the leading-edge technology by linking the datasets of patients across multiple medical touchpoints including GP surgeries, hospitals and pharmacies. The electronic medical records enabled the trial to monitor patients in the study without additional interventions or controls.

“Patients don’t really feel as if they’re in a study so they behave as they normally would, and we can get a better idea of how treatments work in the real world.” Dr John New Consultant Physician Salford Royal, NWEH Chief Clinical Officer & Director of the Salford Lung Study

A broad range of around 2,800 patients with COPD were recruited to the trial, allowing the effectiveness of the treatment to be evaluated when used in a real world clinical practice setting. The results of the Salford Lung Study in COPD are expected in 2016. A second study, conducted in over 4000 patients with asthma, is ongoing.

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