Pharmacy departments engagement with EDGE by NIHR CRN West Midlands

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Pharmacy departments in the NIHR Clinical Research Network West Midlands (CRN WM) Partner Organisations submit a set of data points every quarter to the Network relating to their approval and set up times for clinical trials involving investigational medicinal products. This information is used to create a report which shows how the West Midlands pharmacy departments are performing in relation to time to open studies. This information is used both locally and nationally to identify departments that may need additional support and to share best practice. 

Historically, data was not returned by all Trusts and data was often incomplete. This was due to pharmacy departments needing to contact Research and Development (R&D) for 10 of the 14 data points. These requests took time and effort from multiple people which led to the incomplete data return.

The data requested from R&D was already available in EDGE which meant that the data collection by pharmacy departments was duplication of work.

A project to support pharmacy departments’ engagement with EDGE was created, led by the CRN WM Senior Pharmacy Technician. Partner Organisations were asked to put themselves forward to take part in the project pilot which saw pharmacy staff from four NHS Trusts trained to use EDGE to collect their data, supported by experienced EDGE users at their Trust and the CRN WM.

In order to collect the data, a set of attributes was created in EDGE. The same attribute set was used by the pilot Trusts which then allowed the data to be reported on by the Network instead of pharmacy departments having to return data to the CRN WM.

The project pilot has seen the time and resources needed to collect data drastically reduced and the data return is more comprehensive.

Other Partner Organisations in the region are being trained to engage with EDGE and collect the pharmacy data this way.

As a result of this project, a pharmacy working group is being created to identify other ways in which EDGE can be utilised by pharmacy in the delivery of research.


Post by Jenny Warmington,
Senior Pharmacy Technician,
NIHR CRN West Midlands