Public Release: 

University wins national contract for new health research dissemination center

University of Southampton

The University of Southampton has been awarded a national contract worth £5.1m to share new research findings with clinicians, patients and managers in health and social care.

A new National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Dissemination Centre will make it easier for people to get research evidence they need in a form that is most helpful to them. The Wessex Institute, part of the University of Southampton, won the contract in partnership with Bazian, following a competitive tendering process.

The new Centre will showcase the most important findings from the NIHR, which invests over £1bn in world-class research that saves lives and improves care. The £5.1m contract awarded by the NIHR will run for five years from 1 April 2015.

"This is an exciting opportunity. Every week, we will produce new summaries of systematic reviews and other high quality research which has been rated as important by the service," says the new Centre Director Dr Peter Davidson. "We will add insights and commentaries from frontline staff and make the most of existing clinical, patient and research networks to get the best research to the right people at the right time."

The NIHR Dissemination Centre was one of three contracts awarded by the NIHR during the tendering process, which also saw Southampton have its contract renewed as one of nine Technology Assessment Review (TAR) teams. The total value of the TAR contract across all nine TAR teams will increase from £36.1m to £38.1m from April 2016 and will run for five years.

Professor Dame Sally C. Davies FRS FMedSci, Chief Medical Officer and Chief Scientific Adviser at the Department of Health said: "These new awards are important because of the role systematic reviews play in the health research landscape. By removing uncertainties in science and research, systematic reviews help to ensure that only the most effective and best-value interventions are adopted by the NHS and social care providers.

"The centres will provide high quality systematic reviews infrastructure, enabling our health and care services access to the best possible evidence to inform decisions and choices."


Notes to editors

1. The Wessex Institute based at the University of Southampton has over fifteen years' experience in public health and clinical medicine research, including managing five of the eight NIHR national research programmes, including the flagship Health Technology Assessment programme.

2. Bazian was founded over fourteen years ago with a mission to supply evidence-based services on an industrial scale. Funded activity includes evidence updates for NICE and the National Screening Committee as well as the popular `Behind the Headlines' resource for NHS Choices.

3. Through world-leading research and enterprise activities, the University of Southampton connects with businesses to create real-world solutions to global issues. Through its educational offering, it works with partners around the world to offer relevant, flexible education, which trains students for jobs not even thought of. This connectivity is what sets Southampton apart from the rest; we make connections and change the world.


For further information contact:

Steven Williams, Media Relations, University of Southampton, Tel: 023 8059 2128, email:

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