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NHS plan’s research commitments are welcome, but only a first step

NHS England has the right ambitions, but how it will reach them remains to be seen, says Shaun Griffin.

NHS England’s heavily trailed long-term plan was finally published on 7 January. It seems to have received a cautiously optimistic welcome from the medical research sector.

The plan is a huge opportunity for NHS England to reset ambitions for the health and care system and recognise the fundamental importance of research and innovation to its future sustainability. It was only in 2017 that NHS England’s board signalled a commitment to research by endorsing, jointly with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), 12 actions to support and apply research in the NHS.

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