£10m project at Bart’s NHS cardiac centre links up research with treatment

Bart's NHS heart-and-treatment centre

Bart's NHS heart-and-treatment centre - Credit: Barts NHS

A world-class heart research medical centre could save 11,000 lives in the next five years after a huge investment landed by east London’s Queen Mary University and Barts NHS health trust.

A £10 million funding commitment towards creating a cardiovascular academic facility at the Barts heart centre in the City has been pledged by Barts Charity.

Its aim is to bring world-class research together with everyday treatment of patients at the hospital.

Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death worldwide, while the early mortality rate in parts of London is 85-in-every-100,000 of the population, compared to 67 national average and 50 in Europe.

“The people of east London and north London continue suffering appalling rates of heart disease,” Bart’s cardiology professor Charles Knight said.

“This is a chance to develop new approaches for patients worldwide.

“We could potentially save 11,000 lives in the next five years if the centre lowers early mortality to European levels.”

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The £10.2m investment is to focus on integrating clinical care with research to tackle cardiovascular health issues facing the population, addressing a growing burden of heart failure and establishing a state-of-the-art centre.

Barts Charity’s Laura Wilson said: “This cash is testament to the potential of the heart centre to make a significant difference to the health of our community, while having international importance through the research undertaken at the centre.”

The charity has set up a heart health network, appropriately called ‘Circulate’, to raise funds through partnerships with businesses and events for City companies to improve employee health.

Mark Caulfield, Director of Queen Mary’s William Harvey Research Institute, said: “The new ‘Circulate’ network means we can attract the highest-calibre international faculty, healthcare teams and groups to the centre.

“Our aim is to create the ‘go-to’ academic medical centre for research and treatment of cardiovascular disease in one.”

The support underpins a collaboration between Queen Mary’s, Barts Health and UCL that aims to create the “premier” cardiovascular institute by 2021, with a strategy that connects cutting-edge cardiovascular science directly to treating patients.