The Farr Institute
Advancing health informatics research through cross-centre collaboration
The Farr Institute
The Health eResearch Centre is one of four publically funded eResearch centres that together make up the UK-wide Farr Institute of Health Informatics Research.
Created in 2013 as a single overarching brand to unify health informatics work taking place at twenty-four individual research centres, The Farr Institute is an interconnected virtual network that is committed to delivering high-quality research for public and patient benefit. The Farr Institute aims to:
- deliver high-quality, cutting-edge research linking electronic health data with other forms of research and routinely collected data;
- build capacity in health informatics research; to provide the physical and electronic infrastructure to facilitate collaboration across the four nodes;
- support the safe use of patient and research data for medical research;
- enable partnerships by providing a physical structure to co-locate NHS organizations, industry, and other UK academic centres.
Alongside its twenty-four UK universities (which provide an academic bedrock for UK health informatics), The Farr Institute includes partnerships with the NHS, industry and public bodies such as Public Health England, Public Health Wales and NHS National Services Scotland. The Farr Institute is underpinned by deep engagement with patients and the general public.
As a single brand to unite UK health informatics, The Farr Institute was given the green-light by a ten-strong consortium of funders, led by the Medical Research Council. Collectively they have invested £37.5 million in advancing the science of Health Informatics and ensuring that, as a group, the network delivers world-leading, cutting-edge research in the field of health data and the advancement of eHealth and mHealth applications.
Harnessing data to improve patient and public health is at the heart of The Farr Institute and as such, there are number of associated priorities that have been set-out by the Institute’s Directors, these include: building capacity through the development of training and educational opportunities; improving the scalability of data; Information Governance; and ensuring effective collaboration and communication between all stakeholders including patients and the public.
The Farr Institute will provide the physical and electronic infrastructure that is needed to facilitate collaboration across the four leading spokes. Locally, HeRC’s 2014 capital expansions at both Vaughan House and Liverpool’s Waterhouse Building are the result of Farr Institute investment to co-locate multi-disciplinary working as is the development of the North of England’s supercomputer and N8 networking capabilities.
With the physical infrastructure now in place, greater emphasis on cross-centre research projects will now take priority. Over the next twelve months The Farr will drive advancement in the UK’s Health Informatics community through cross-collaboration, shared best practice and a commitment to improving public health and health services.