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Improving the health and wealth of Oxford, the Thames Valley and the nation through research.


We are the Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care Oxford, or CLAHRC (“Clark”) Oxford for short. We’re part of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) – the research arm of the NHS.

The CLAHRCs are regionally-based partnerships between local providers of NHS services (such as hospital trusts) and universities. These partnerships also include other organisations such as health-related businesses and charities, and the local Academic Health Science Network.

Together with these partners, the CLAHRCs identify local and national health and social care priorities and fund projects which address these. 

CLAHRC Oxford is hosted by Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust and work with the University of Oxford and Oxford Brookes University, among others (see our partners page for more details).

CLAHRC Oxford covers the region of Oxford and the Thames Valley. 

We fund two general types of project:

  1. Projects which take the findings from published, proven research and aim to translate it into practice in the NHS, i.e. into effective new treatments or services for patients.
  2. Projects which develop and evaluate new types of treatment or services in real-world health and social care environments.

In other words, we fund applied health and social care research.

What is our research?

We have six broad themes across which we fund research:

  •  Early intervention and service redesign;
  •  Health behaviours and behavioural interventions;
  •  Patient experience and patient-reported
  •  Better management of medical-psychiatric
  •  Patient self-management of chronic disease; and
  •  Behaviour change – diet and obesity.

You can read more about each, and watch a short introductory video, on our research pages here.

We work with patients and the public to help shape all of our projects. You can find out more about that, or get involved yourself, here.

The 'why'

The idea behind the CLAHRCs is two-fold.

Firstly, to bring together the people doing research which could benefit patients and the public with the people who can use and apply the findings of that research in the real-world, i.e. doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, etc.

And, secondly, to do it more quickly than is currently the case, bringing new effective treatments to patients faster.

Our Back Skills project is a good example:

Research has shown that a new behavioural and group-based treatment for long-term low back pain is more effective, longer lasting and cheaper to deliver than currently used treatments in the NHS.

The Back Skills project is developing and evaluating a way to rapidly train a large number of healthcare professionals in how to deliver this treatment, bringing it into widespread use across NHS England more quickly. In this case, using an online training programme.