Today - 20th May 2020 - is International Clinical Trials Day. The day celebrates the anniversary of the first clinical trial by James Lind in 1747 into the causes of scurvy on board the HMS Salisbury. His trial consisted of just 12 men, grouped into pairs and given a variety of dietary supplements from cider to oranges and lemons. The trial only lasted six days but, within that time, there was a noticeable improvement in the group eating the fruit, providing Lind with the evidence required of the link between citrus fruits and scurvy.
Health research has come a long way since that first clinical trial, and the fantastic teams that deliver this work have been a daily feature in the news for months. But none of this research can happen without members of the public, up and down the country, putting their hands up and getting involved.
That includes more than 70,000 participants taking part in studies looking at COVID-19 treatments, vaccines and risk factors.
In recognition of this amazing contribution by members of the public, the NIHR will be sharing stories from some of these volunteers about their experience of getting involved. Throughout the day they'll be posting stories from research participants on their Facebook page and Be Part of Research Twitter account.