MRC Call for E-Health Informatics Research Centres

The Medical Research Council, in partnership with Arthritis Research UK, the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, the Economic and Social Research Council, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the National Institute of Health Research, the National Institute for Social Care and Health Research (Welsh Assembly Government), the Chief Scientist Office (Scottish Government Health Directorates) and the Wellcome Trust invite proposals for Centres of Excellence in research linking electronic health data. The Centres will pursue cutting-edge research, deliver innovative linkage and analysis of health-related data sets, build research capacity and expertise and act as an interface with industry, practice and policy with the aim of building and sustaining a vibrant health informatics research capability in the UK.

The objectives of the Centres will be to:

  • provide a focus for high-quality, cutting-edge research using electronic health records;
  • undertake and promote innovative linkage and analysis of large health related data sets including social and economic data;
  • build capacity in electronic health informatics research.

Centres will either be based around an existing research group(s) or research unit(s) in a single institution or bring together expertise across several institutes in a wider consortium. By building on existing research strengths, Centres will be well placed to provide UK leadership in the area. Centres will create UK capability in electronic health informatics research by providing advice and expertise to support the wider research community, encouraging collaboration across the biomedical, social and computer sciences and offering training and career development opportunities.

Centres will focus on research to improve the health and wellbeing of the population or address major challenges arising from conditions of significant health burden such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal conditions, neurodegeneration and mental health.

Funds of ~£15m are available to support a number of Centres across the UK for up to five-years and awards will be made on the basis of full economic costs (fEC) at approximately 67% to reflect collaborative funding from research councils, charities and government departments. As these Centres will represent leading foci of expertise it is expected that requests for support will be for a minimum of £3m over the funding period, although less may be awarded as determined by rigorous peer-review.

Following completion of the five year period, a funding extension that tapers over the next 5 years may be considered if good progress has been made. However a long term sustainability plan with demonstrable commitment by the host HEI to ongoing support of the Centre at the end of the initial 5 year funding term must be part of the Centre application.

ALL applicants are required to discuss their proposals with the Programme Manager (Dr Mark Pitman;; tel. 0207 3952215) before submission. A brief abstract should be e-mailed in advance of discussions.

Deadline for outline proposals is 1 November 2011

Back to News