Leeds to lead study to improve patient care in the NHS

Experts from the University and the Leeds Hospitals NHS Trust are to lead research into the care of patients with life-threatening kidney injury.


Acute kidney injury (AKI), causes 42,000 deaths every year and costs the NHS £1.2 billion per annum. Using a £175,000 award from the National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment (NIHR HTA) Programme, the researchers will evaluate the potential benefits of new diagnostic tests for AKI.

Earlier detection of AKI may improve patient outcomes by informing clinical decisions and guiding the development of new therapies. Clinicians will work together with health economists to assess the current patient care pathway in the NHS and determine the ability of new diagnostic tests to influence and improve routine patient care by utilising novel statistical and modelling methods.

This study, named “AKI-Diagnostics”, aims to enhance the value of NHS care for at-risk patients. The NIHR Diagnostic Evidence Co-operative at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust will provide essential infrastructure support to aid the development and use of sophisticated decision modelling techniques to design an NHS strategy for the further development of the most promising diagnostic tests.

Dr Peter Hall, who leads the study with Dr Andy Lewington says: “Acute kidney injury is a major problem in critically ill patients in the NHS. The consequences include death or the development of chronic kidney disease and the need for long term dialysis. Simple treatments are effective if used promptly but we urgently need better diagnostic tests to allow earlier detection. AKI-Diagnostics will provide vital information for the diagnostics industry and potentially aid clinicians to improve patient outcomes.”/p>

Dr Andy Lewington added that “Patients who suffer AKI are at a higher risk of death than patients who suffer a heart attack. Funding and research in this area needs to improve if we are to improve patient outcomes. I am delighted we have the opportunity to perform this study in Leeds and hope industry will support our work.”

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