NHS Costs

EPSRC will pay the research costs associated with the National Health Service (NHS) component of a proposal. However, NHS support and NHS treatment costs will not be covered. These costs are explained in detail below.

The research award does not include NHS support and/or treatment costs, although the EPSRC will encourage reviewers to take NHS support and treatment costs into account when considering the value for money of the research These should therefore be covered within the Justification of Resources section.

NHS Research Costs

EPSRC will only fund costs which fall under this heading; they are funded at the appropriate FEC rate (usually 80%).

These are the costs of R&D itself and should be included under the appropriate fund heading e.g. staff under DI or DA staff (as appropriate). If the NHS Trust does not have agreed rates for Estates and Indirect Costs, the default rates should be used; these are published periodically on the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) website. These can only be claimed for the research component of the proposal.

Where a research study takes place in, or involves the NHS, Department of Health guidance on the responsibilities for meeting patient care costs associated with research and development in the NHS applies.

NHS Support Costs

These are the additional patient care costs associated with the research, which would end once the research and development activity in question has stopped, even if the patient care service involved continues to be provided.

These might cover items such as extra patient tests, extra in-patient days and extra nursing attention. Researchers should contact their local NHS research and development department initially. If they are unable to help directly or if there is no local NHS research and development department, contact the local Comprehensive Local Research Network (CLRN) Senior Manager.

NHS Treatment Costs

These are the patient care costs that would continue to be incurred if the patient care service in question continued to be provided after the research and development activity has stopped. In determining NHS treatment costs the applicant must assume that the patient care service being assessed will continue even though there may be no plans for it to do so.

Where patient care is being provided which differs from the normal, standard treatment for that condition (either an experimental treatment or a service in a different location from where it would normally be given), the difference between the total treatment costs and the costs of the ‘usual standard care’ (if any) constitutes excess treatment cost/saving, but is nonetheless part of the treatment cost, not an NHS support or research cost. These costs should be determined in conjunction with your NHS trust partner(s) and their commissioners.

Further Information

  • Responsibility for meeting patient care costs
  • Attributing revenue costs of externally funded non-commercial research in the NHS (ARCO)
  • EL(97)77: Meeting patient care costs associated with research and development in the NHS detailed guidance

Additional advice and guidance can be obtained from your local Trust’s Research and Development Office or from the Department of Health Research and Development Finance team.

For research based in Scotland - advice on NHS funding and policy, research ethics, IP, information and communication advice can be sought from the Chief Scientist’s Office.

For research based in Wales - refer to NHS research and development in Wales.

For research based in Northern Ireland - refer to the NHS research and development in Northern Ireland.