Clinical research using NHS resources

Researchers applying for clinical research funding need to complete a Schedule of Events Cost Attribution Tool (SoECAT) to be eligible for the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) portfolio and the support this provides.

This change came into effect on 1 October 2018.

Who needs to complete a SoECAT

You must complete a SoECAT if:

  • you’re applying for clinical research funding
  • you will carry out your research in the UK
  • your research will use NHS resources
  • your research requires Health Research Authority approval
  • you’re completing a full application (not a preliminary application).

You must complete a SoECAT even if you don't think your clinical research will involve excess treatment costs (ETCs).

You don't need to complete a SoECAT if:

  • you’re submitting a preliminary application, but you will if we invite you to complete a full application
  • you submitted a full application before 1 October 2018.

How to complete a SoECAT

These are the steps you need to take when you apply for a Wellcome grant that includes clinical research.

You should contact an AcoRD specialist as early as possible in the application process.

  • Send us the 'study information' and 'summary' pages from your SoECAT form as a single PDF with your completed grant application. We may ask for the full form later in the application process.
  • If we award you a grant you must tell your AcoRD specialist. In England, very expensive ETCs may need further assessment by an NHS panel.

Why you need to do this

The SoECAT makes sure that costs are attributed:

  • in line with the AcoRD framework
  • consistently across the UK.

In England the tool also supports how ETCs are agreed and paid.

ETCs occur when patient care costs are higher in research than in routine care. In the past, difficulties arranging how ETCs are agreed and paid have delayed research and the health improvements it can bring.

In England, the NHS is responsible for paying ETCs for non-commercial research.

More information