Clinical trials day 2016

8 June 2016

On 2 June, staff and patients at the Royal Free London were invited to listen to talks on ground-breaking clinical trials at the trust.

Over the day, a number of world class clinicians and scientists from across the trust spoke about their research and how it will impact patient care.   

Dr Gautam Mehta, honorary consultant and senior lecturer at UCL, gave a talk about a mobile phone application called ‘AlcoChange’ which encourages users to record their drinking habits. Dr Mehta is part of a team that was awarded £75,000 from the charity Health Foundation to provide the app to patients with alcoholic liver disease. 

Dr Helen McKenna, research fellow, explored a parallel between critically ill patients suffering from hypoxia and the experiences of mountain climbers facing high altitudes and a lack of oxygen on Mount Everest.   

Dr Ameet Bakhai, research deputy director, invited Melody McLaren, a patient at the RFL, to share her experiences of taking part in a clinical research trial. 

Melody played Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Don’t Stop Thinking about Tomorrow’ to describe how taking part in a clinical research study called OPTIMA kept her feeling “positive and optimistic” about her recovery, so much so that she participated in a London jazz piano workshop a few days after her breast surgery. 

Dr Bakhai added: “Every research story starts with a patient story, much like Melody’s, and ground-breaking research is achieved through the efforts of patients and clinicians.”

In the afternoon, visitors were able to view a number of information stalls and speak to research teams about studies taking place at the RFL.

Riya Gosrani, an A-level student from South Hampstead School, said she attended the event as she is interested in a career in a medicine. 

She said: “I thought it was really interesting and it is so surprising to see the amount of research taking place and the impact it has on people. It is important to notice the changing trends of research as the trials which were taking place a few years ago have now developed new treatments.

“The way the research takes place and the number of people involved is fascinating.  It is so inspiring to see this much work going into improving patient care.”

More pictures can be found in the clinical trials day 2016 gallery

Notes to editors

Media contacts: or call 020 7830 2963

Images: Dr Ameet Bakhai, research deputy director, Melody McLaren, patient at the RFL and Fahan Naim, deputy director. 

About the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

The Royal Free began as a pioneering organisation and continues to play a leading role in the care of patients. Our mission is to provide world class expertise and local care. In the 21st century, the Royal Free London continues to lead improvements in healthcare.

The Royal Free London attracts patients from across the country and beyond to its specialist services in liver and kidney transplantation, haemophilia, renal care, HIV, infectious diseases, plastic surgery, immunology, Parkinson's disease, vascular surgery, cardiology, amyloidosis and scleroderma and we are a member of the academic health science partnership UCLPartners.

In July 2014 Barnet Hospital and Chase Farm Hospital became part of the Royal Free London. Read 'A bigger trust, a better future'.