Research and innovation

How your donations and fundraising impact on the children and young people through reaserch

Sheffield Children's is at the forefront of pioneering new health technologies. Research is fundamental in ensuring that Sheffield Children's provide the best treatment possible for patients in their care. 

Through our research studies, children and young people can access the latest in treatments and technology, meaning that we can provide the most up to date care for our patients. Every year, between 1,500 and 2,500 children and families are involved in around 350 research studies at Sheffield Children’s. 

Some of these projects include trialing new medicines for children with long term conditions, developing innovative technologies and supporting services across multiple different areas including emergency care, specialist paediatrics, community health, and child and adolescent mental health. Sheffield Children’s is home to national and international leaders in research and innovation. 

Their work in several different areas is ground-breaking. Combined with the help and support of everyone who participates in research, Sheffield Children’s has established itself as an international leader in the field, having been so successful in developing cutting edge therapies for children and young people.

 Over the last five years, the development of technology has become central to our work. Sheffield Children’s hosts the only national paediatric technology network in the country.

The development of technology and diagnostic tests for the NHS

The network is one of eleven co-operatives that were set up to support the development of technology and diagnostic tests for the NHS. The co-operative aims to beginning addressing this problem. It focuses on developing early stage technology in seven areas, specifically chosen due to the life-changing burden they place on children. They are

*    Surgical Technologies: Operating on children is very demanding, due to variations in anatomy, size and physiology. Surgeons are often required to adapt adult technology for children, risking less than desirable outcomes. 

*    Cancer: which is the leading cause of death in children and young people in the UK, despite improving survival rates. 1,800 children aged up to 14 are diagnosed with the disease every year.

*    Respiratory and Sleep Disorders: Respiratory disorders are very common, with 1.1 million children in the UK receiving treatment for asthma. Sleep disorders, like narcolepsy are both common and highly debilitating.

*    Rare Diseases: There are more than 8,000 known rare diseases with many more syndromes with no name. 75% of those affected are children and young people, with 30% of those children sadly passing away before their fifth birthday. 

*    Epilepsy, Movement and Muscle Disorders: These can often severely impact quality of life, withepilepsy is twice as common in children than in adults.

*    Long-Term Ventilation: Children and young people with respiratory disease can require long-term hospitalisation in intensive care.

*    Transition: Young people are required to transfer to adult services between the ages of 16 and 19. Transition often leads to poor engagement with adult health services and poor outcomes.