Research and Innovation

“Embed a culture in the organisation that enables every patient, carer and clinician the opportunity to participate in research”

Improving healthcare for the benefit of patients is at the heart of everything we do. Patients within the Trust have some of the best access and opportunities for new therapies and technologies. The Research and Innovation team work hard to provide such clinical research to develop new treatments and knowledge for better health care, building the evidence for new approaches that are safe and effective.

We are a University Hospital Trust. This means we commit significant resources and investment in research and have a keen focus on the educational development and training of our current and future workforces.  

The links below will take you through our latest studies as well as how to get involved with research, both as a  participant in studies and as a healthcare professional wishing to learn more about running one.

Did you miss our Annual Conference? You can watch the video below to catch up on the event from earlier this year.

Brief summary

Here at Southern Health we are pioneers in using the latest technology to better patient outcomes and improve the quality of care we as a service provide.

As such, we welcome you to our Virtual Reality Lab!

Virtual Reality (VR) can be used to place users into realistic and immersive environments and therefore provides the opportunity for staff to safely experience training in reducing restrictive practices. This advancing technology allows learners to obtain the knowledge and understanding necessary to perform a number of tasks and procedures involving the human body, without ever having to practice on a live patient.

The Virtual Reality tools still provide the hands-on experience required to acquire a familiarity and comfort in performing procedures, but in a safe and controlled setting. Therefore, as learners make mistakes, they can be thoroughly corrected in real-time and without risk. As Virtual Reality modules still require interaction, skills are able to become second nature before they are applied in real world scenarios.

We have several exciting projects being set up to further explore the use of virtual reality within our trust, in part thanks to our novel, home-grown research project dubbed ‘TREE’ [insert link], which we were nominated as a finalist for the HSJ Digital Awards 2023.

Our virtual lab has links with local institutions such as the University of Southampton and nationally recognised leaders in training of staff, South London and Maudsley NHS Trust. We have Virtual Reality Champions dotted throughout the trust, so please do look out for them on your travel!

If you want to know more, or have a project in mind that uses virtual reality technology, please contact:

Joe Salmon


Tel: 02380 475943

Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust is committed to improving communication with research participants in a manner which supports their continued involvement.

The Trust supports the use of email to enhance communication but has a duty to inform participants of the conditions of email communication and the risks. These are clearly documented in the 'Email Communication for Research - Information sheet'.

If you have any questions please email us at:



All our performance reports can now be found on the National Institute for Health Research's (NIHR) clinical trial performance platform. You can view them by following this link to the platform.

Contact us:

Tom Rudd Unit, Moorgreen Hospital West End, Southampton, SO30 3JB

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