Institute of Health & Society

Staff Profile

Professor Helen Hancock




I have research expertise in the design, development and delivery of nationally-funded clinical trials with a track record in cardiac surgery and cardiology clinical trials, as well as in randomised controlled trial methodology. 

My background in the NHS and my active research and academic roles, mean that I am familiar with the landscape and strategic imperatives within which the NIHR and NHS operate.

As a member of the the National Institute for Health research (NIHR) senior leadership team /nihr-leadership/, I engage directly with policy makers. 

I offer academic and strategic leadership of the NIHR Research Design Service North East (RDS NE) and Durham Clinical Trials Unit (DCTU) teams. 

co-Director, Newcastle Clinical Trials Unit (NCTU)

I hold joint responsibility for the academic, financial, administrative and business management of NCTU.

NCTU is focused on excellence in the design, development and delivery of clinical trials to improve patient outcomes .The Unit provides the infrastructure to support clinical trials and studies to be conducted to the standards required by regulators and in accordance with best practice and guidance. 

co-Director, NIHR Research Design Service North East (RDS NE) 

The RDS NE is one of ten regionally based RDS’, which together form a national Research Design Service

The Research Design Service provides advice to investigators who are preparing applications for national peer-reviewed funding (to NIHR, AMRC, MRC and other national funding bodies) for applied health and social care research. 

RDS NE operates an integrated regional service: 

Email: ph. (0191) 208 7000

Lead for NIHR RDS nationally, linking with Department of Health and National Institute of Health Research colleagues:

I engage directly with senior DH and NIHR colleagues on behalf of the RDS nationally. 

This role includes membership of NIHR Strategy Board which advises on strategic issues relating to the management of the NIHR and the implementation of NIHR’s strategic plans as part of the senior NIHR Leadership team.