Services for business

Consultancy and expertise

The Department of Health Sciences can offer skills and expertise in a range of health-related disciplines, supported by world-class research and underpinned by hands-on experience.

We have a range of experts ready to apply their knowledge and experience to provide a fresh perspective, offer expert advice or to help your organisation overcome any challenges you face.

All opportunities at the University of Leicester are supported by an experienced business-focussed team, to negotiate contracts and finance, ensuring that working with Leicester is simple, flexible and low-risk.

Please contact hsenquiries@le.ac.uk with any enquiries, and to discuss how we can best help you.

Examples of the range of knowledge and expertise we can offer include:

  • Evidence synthesis, such as multivariate meta-analysis, diagnostic test data and network meta-analysis
  • Health Technology Assessment [HTA] such as surrogate outcomes, treatment switching and strategic advice
  • Survival analysis, such as registry/real-world data, joint modelling and multi-state models
  • Qualitative research, particularly the use of ethnographic methods, in healthcare across a range of settings (primary, community, secondary and tertiary care)
  • Use of social science theory to inform healthcare improvement
  • Quality improvement programmes, interventions and process evaluation in healthcare
  • The development of improvement interventions and the design of research trials
  • Evaluation expertise in primary care and older people’s medicine

Case studies in consultancy

The Department of Health Sciences has a proven record in providing expert advice to world-leading pharmaceutical companies. We have pioneered methodologies used for Health Technology Assessments (HTA), essential in submissions to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) as part of the decision-making process to determine the benefit and cost-effectiveness of providing potential new and innovative therapies within England. By utilising our expertise, organisations know that they will obtain reliable and accurate advice.

For example…

Treatment switching is becoming an increasingly popular choice in randomised controlled trials for experimental therapies in oncology. This is when a patient may opt to be switched from the control to the experimental arm, generally after the primary end point for a clinical trial is met, e.g. disease progression.

However, standard statistical approaches to the analysis of trials may be confounded by treatment switching. Without appropriate adjustment, this can result in inappropriate analyses being used for decision-making in submissions to bodies such as NICE and can result in potentially beneficial and cost-effective therapies not being reimbursed.

In 2012, consultation from our experts was an essential part of Roche's final submission to NICE for the oncology therapy, vemurafenib.

They were able to advise on appropriate methods to adjust for treatment switching in the BRIM3 clinical trial (NCT01006980), demonstrating a significant clinical benefit for vemurafenib compared to a similar treatment in patients with non-operable, metastatic, BRAF V600-positive melanoma.

Consequently, with the appropriate adjustment for treatment switching, our experts enabled Roche to demonstrate that the cost-effectiveness ratio decreased from approximately £75,000 per quality-adjusted life year gained to £52,000.

Vemurafenib (Zelboraf) was approved by NICE based on this submission in December 2012, and is a now recommended treatment on the NHS in England and Wales.

This case study references information that can be found in the REF2014 Impact case studies, the NICE guidelines for vemurafenib, and the following paper:

Iain Bennett, Noman Paracha, Keith Abrams, and Joshua Ray, 2018. Accounting for Uncertainty in Decision Analytic Models Using Rank Preserving Structural Failure Time Modelling: Application to Parametric Survival Models. Value in Healthcare, 21 (1):105-109.

CPD and bespoke courses

The Department of Health Sciences are dedicated to making our specialist knowledge and research accessible.

We run several expert-led continuing professional development courses throughout the year, targeted at professional and postgraduate learners. Our short courses provide high-quality training and transferable skills in health-based disciplines for both clinical and research settings.

We can also work with you to design a bespoke course to fit your organisation's needs, or deliver one of our existing courses in-house. If you are interested, please contact us at hsenquiries@le.ac.uk with details of what you require to arrange a consultation.