The Northern Ireland Clinical Research Network (NICRN) has launched a dedicated network for mental-health studies in the region.

Clinical lead for the new network is Professor Gerard Leavey, director of the Bamford Centre for Mental Health and Wellbeing, which is based at the University of Ulster’s Magee campus.

The network is supported by clinicians and academics from across Northern Ireland’s Health and Social Care Trusts, the University of Ulster and Queen’s University Belfast. 

The initiative means that mental-health patients from Northern Ireland can now be involved in major national and international research trials, noted the University of Ulcer in announcing the network launch. 

It will also ensure that researchers and health professionals have a better understanding of mental-health services, the university added.  

Wealth of expertise

“The University of Ulster has a wealth of research expertise, particularly in the area of mental health,” Professor Leavey commented.

“The launch of this new Network marks an enormously important step forward for users of mental-health services, as it will help to develop local links to international research into mental illness.” 

The Northern Ireland Clinical Research Network was set up in 2008 to support the contribution of Northern Ireland’s clinical-research community to the work of the UK Clinical Research Collaboration and its associated UK Clinical Research Networks.