Edinburgh supports trial data publication

I recently read in a Sense about Science tweet that a lone student asked the Principal of the University of Edinburgh if it would join the AllTrials Campaign and it became the first Scottish University to do so. Here’s his story – [Editor]

As a Nurse I frequently talk with patients about the treatments and medications they receive. These are often difficult conversations as it relies on the clinician having a library of background knowledge coupled with the most up-to-date data. Despite the wealth of knowledge that exists within the medical community there is an increasing body of research that highlights the large amount of clinical trial data that has gone unshared for many decades. This is the origin of the AllTrials campaign.

AllTrials logo

The best estimate is that around half of clinical trials have never been published. Recognising the need for change a group of academics founded AllTrials. AllTrials is an initiative headed by leading academic bodies such as the British Medical Journal, the Oxford Centre for Evidence-based Medicine and the Cochrane Collaboration. AllTrials calls for all past and present clinical trials to be registered and their full methods and summary results reported.

As a Nursing graduate of The University of Edinburgh and a current masters student within the Nursing department I felt I should engage with my University about the issue of clinical trial data sharing and about the AllTrials campaign. I wrote to Professor Sir Timothy O’Shea, the Principal of the University, who gave his support for AllTrials. As of July 2014 The University of Edinburgh became the first Scottish University to register its support for AllTrials. This move is inherently positive for Edinburgh, both as a global leader in health care and as an institution with a longstanding Edinburgh Data Library history. The campaign has had nearly 80,000 people sign its petition as well as just under 500 organisations register support.

This is an issue important issue for all of us. Show your support by signing the AllTrials petition.

Adam Lloyd
Masters of Nursing in Clinical Research student
The University of Edinburgh

The views expressed are my own and do not reflect the views of The University of Edinburgh, the AllTrials campaign or any of its affiliates.