HERU supports the NHS through research, professional advice and building health economics capacity. Research focuses on key priority areas for the NHS: incentivising individuals to adopt and maintain healthier lifestyles (Health Behaviour); improving NHS productivity and performance (Workforce and Organisation of Care); understanding patient preferences (Methods of Benefit Valuation) and determining the cost effectiveness of new clinical interventions (Assessment of Technologies).

HERU receives core funding from the Chief Scientist Office (CSO) of the Scottish Government Health and Social Care Directorates (SGHSC) and the University of Aberdeen. Substantial additional funding also comes from competitive research grants, consultancy and training activities. The core funding provided by CSO enables HERU to:

  • Establish or enhance research expertise in CSO priority areas.
  • Invest in key projects in priority areas for which direct costs cannot be recovered (CSO and Research Council grants) or which are unlikely to be funded by other mechanisms.
  • Provide seed-corn funding for projects in priority areas which lead to additional funding from outside sources in the future.
  • Develop new methodologies and develop and test the appropriateness of existing leading-edge methodology for application to the health service and health related issues.
  • Build research capacity in health economics throughout Scotland.
  • Develop and make available new research facilities and new datasets.
  • Offer expert advice and support to NHS Scotland and the SGHSC on the application of existing research knowledge and the development and management of research.
  • Contribute expert advice on health economics through committee membership and contributions to other expert groups.

Major decisions over the allocation of core-funding are taken by the Executive Management Group of the Unit. This follows, where appropriate, discussion between the Unit Director, the CSO Research Manager with responsibility for the Unit and senior management in the College of Life Sciences and Medicine. Decisions are subject to Review by the Unit Advisory Group and are audited in the five-yearly CSO Review of HERU.

HERU does not subsidise NHS research but will use core funds to co-invest with NHS Scotland where opportunities exist. Our research themes are all interested in building collaborations, please visit our website for information and contact theme leaders if you would like to discuss possible collaborations.

For further advice contact the Director, Professor Mandy Ryan.