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New centre will be the gateway to integrated health education and research


A pioneering new partnership between Brunel University London, the Hillingdon Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and the Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust aims to revolutionise the way health and social care is delivered in the community.

Brunel and the two NHS Trusts will work together to launch the new Brunel Partners Academic Centre for Health Sciences – providing the perfect setting for researching and developing new methods of healthcare delivery, while training future generations of healthcare professionals who will be ready to succeed in the changing landscape.

Focusing on allied health, nursing, social care and medicine, the centre will support ambitious plans to educate the current and future health and care workforce, supporting the delivery of radically transformed integrated physical and mental health and care provision.

Acting as a gateway to the wider university, the Academic Centre will also enable translational research across health, social sciences, engineering and other faculties.

Professor Julia Buckingham, Vice-Chancellor and President of Brunel University London, said: “The NHS is at a critical stage in its history, and universities like Brunel have a huge role to play in coming up with new ways of giving communities access to the best health and social care, encouraging and supporting healthy lifestyles, and training the workforce of the future to adopt new methods. This is an exciting partnership; bringing together Brunel’s reputation for academic and research excellence with the much-envied clinical experience of our two partner Trusts.”

In a joint statement, Hillingdon Hospital’s Chief Executive, Shane DeGaris and Central and North West London’s Chief Executive, Claire Murdoch said: “We are delighted to be embarking on this exciting new venture with Brunel University London. The centre will be at the cutting edge of healthcare thinking and provide a golden opportunity to shape the way health services are designed and delivered in the future. This will benefit not only the health and wellbeing of local people but the wider health community.”

Healthcare delivery is expected to change considerably in the future, with developments in digital health technologies and other transformational approaches to health and care delivery. The Academic Centre brings together the expertise and ambition to develop improved outcomes in care delivery at both pace and scale. Other innovations in disciplines such as healthy ageing and biomedical engineering will be central to improving patient outcomes.

Funded by the three partners, Brunel Partners Academic Centre for Health Sciences will be officially launched later in the year, while recruitment of a Centre Director will begin shortly.

The Centre's activity will sit alongside other high-profile ways in which Brunel is addressing society’s major challenges, such as through its research into energy-efficient and sustainable technologies, smart power networks and environmental threats, from climate change to pollution.

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Brunel University London was established in 1966 and is home to 13,000 students and 2,000 staff. It already makes a significant contribution towards providing a locally trained healthcare workforce with undergraduate clinical education currently based around: Physician Associate, Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Community Nursing, Biomedical and Health Sciences, including Exercise Physiology and Biostatistics, and Health Economics.

A new Academic Centre would build upon the research strengths of Brunel which, in addition to the areas listed above, include: Bioengineering/Medical Devices, Nanotechnology, Systems and Synthetic Biology, Simulation and Modelling of Healthcare Delivery Systems (Cumberland Initiative), Toxicology, Healthy Ageing, and Rehabilitation.  

The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust provides services to a catchment population of over 350,000 from its main Hillingdon and Mount Vernon Hospital sites. It has a turnover of £222 million and employs more than 3,300 staff.

Hillingdon Hospital provides a range of acute services including A&E, inpatient, day surgery and outpatient clinics.

Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust (CNWL) provides integrated healthcare to a third of London's population, Milton Keynes and areas beyond. It has almost 7,000 staff. CNWL currently provide a mental healthcare service based at the Hillingdon Hospital site.


Reported by:

Keith Coles