05 May 2022, Entebbe The MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit has today unveiled a state-of-the-art clinical research facility in Entebbe to support successful conduct of clinical studies that can make significant contributions to science, policy and practice in Uganda. The facility commissioning ceremony was presided over by the Hon. Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, the Minister of Health and attended by Her Excellency Kate Airey OBE, the British High Commissioner to Uganda and Prof Liam Smeeth, the Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
The Facility is one of the bases of the Unit clinical research and trials platform established by the Unit. The Facility was funded by the Wellcome Trust, a charitable foundation focused on health research based in London, in the United Kingdom and the United Kingdom Research and Innovation/Medical Research Council. The solar-powered facility will be used to conduct clinical research in infectious and non-communicable diseases.
It will also support sharing of expertise and experiences among researchers in Africa through training; and facilitate the development of best practices in the management and conduct of clinical trials.
The MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit has over 30 years’ experience in conducting clinical research and trials. This research comprises a range of studies that involve interactions with patients, research participants and surrounding communities to understand disease mechanisms and natural history; translational research; diagnosis, prevention and therapeutic intervention trials; health services research; and epidemiological studies.
The Unit has developed strong clinical research expertise and infrastructure across its research sites and Programmes. This includes experienced clinical research staff with training in Good Participatory Practice (GPP) guidelines, Human Subjects Protection (HSP), Good Clinical Research Practice (GCP), Good Clinical and Laboratory Practice (GCLP), and Advanced Life Support certification. The new Research Clinics will have equipment to facilitate evaluation of research participants; Pharmacies with capacity to manage clinical trial investigational medicinal products (IMP); Clinical and Diagnostic Laboratory facilities. There will be continued engagement with the communities through Participant Advisory Groups (PAGs) and Community Advisory Boards (CABs) to ensure strong linkages between the research teams, local communities, and other stakeholders.
Professor Pontiano Kaleebu, Director of the Uganda Virus Research Institute and Director of the MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit while delivering his address said,
“We are very excited about this development, this facility will provide opportunities to strengthen and expand our clinical research and training in order to contribute to improving the health of our people”
Prof Liam Smeeth the Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine said
“This is an outstanding facility which cements the Unit’s position as one of the leading research institutes in Africa. Combined with the Unit’s talented and dedicated staff, the new facility will be the catalyst for more vital research that will improve the lives of Ugandans and health of the continent.”
Her Excellency Kate Airey OBE, the British High Commissioner to Uganda in her remarks stated,
“This new facility is another sign of the commitment of the Government of the United Kingdom to partner with the Government of Uganda and scientists to find solutions through research that will lead to better health.”
While giving the keynote address, Hon. Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, the Minister of Health said;
“On behalf of the Ministry of Health, I wish to thank the Wellcome Trust and the UK MRC for funding this facility. This contribution builds on the long term support and partnership with the UK Government and the outstanding research the MRC Unit and UVRI have generated over the years. We pledge to play our part, together building a healthier nation.” she concluded.
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MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit
MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit
The MRC/UVRI & LSHTM Uganda Research Unit is an internationally recognized center of excellence for research on HIV, emerging and re-emerging infections and Non-communicable diseases.
The Unit was established in 1988 to improve the understanding and control of the HIV epidemic in Uganda and globally, following a request from the Uganda Government to the United Kingdom (UK) Government. After wide consultations and in response to a changing public health landscape, Unit work has broadened beyond HIV to include other infections, neglected, endemic, emerging and re-emerging infections and expanded our work in non-communicable diseases (NCDs).
On 1st February, 2018, the MRC/UVRI Uganda Research Unit formally joined the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and became The Medical Research Council/ Uganda Virus Research Institute and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit).
The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine is renowned for its research, postgraduate studies and continuing education in public and global health. The School has an international presence and collaborative ethos, and is uniquely placed to help shape health policy and translate research findings into tangible impact.
Our mission is to improve health and health equity in the UK and worldwide; working in partnership to achieve excellence in public and global health research, education and translation of knowledge into policy and practice.
Wellcome is a politically and financially independent global charitable foundation, funded by a £38.2 billion investment portfolio. Our strategy includes grant funding, advocacy campaigns and partnerships to find solutions for today’s urgent health challenges.
Wellcome supports science to solve the urgent health challenges facing everyone. We support discovery research into life, health and wellbeing, and we’re taking on three worldwide health challenges: mental health, infectious disease and climate.
Launched in April 2018, UKRI is a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). Our organisation brings together the seven disciplinary research councils, Research England, which is responsible for supporting research and knowledge exchange at higher education institutions in England, and the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK.
The Medical Research Council (MRC) is one of seven Research Councils that make up UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Each council manages its own UK Government budget for training and research, some of which is allocated to PhD studentships.
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