Paid clinical trials North England

I love politics (I do realize that there aren't many people like me) and a history buff who also likes nothing better than watching a live comedy.

Become a Guinea Pig

Predictions are gloomy, the economy is stagnating quicker than an algae infested pond and you just don't know if you're going to be employed in a few months or will be living in a cardboard box under a bridge. Yet before you're in such a dire financial situation that you're thinking about taking a bath with a toaster, why not participate on a medical trial?

Admittedly for most people testing experimental drugs is going to be a lot further down the list of ways to make money than cleaning toilets or removing asbestos from pipes. Yet statistically someone en route to participate in a medical trial has more chance of being mugged or knocked down by a car than ever dying or falling seriously ill from testing a new drug.

While you are reading this, in various medical research centres across London, hundreds of people are participating in drugs trial and the chances are they will leave the research centre alive and with nothing more than the promise of a decent sized cheque.

That said, of course, you are participating in the testing of a new drug and that does by definition mean there are unknown factors that could cause you problems. In 2007, in London a drug trial went terribly wrong with volunteers heads apparently "swelling up to the size of elephants" No one died, though one volunteer had to have the ends of his fingers amputated. Yet such incidents are so extremely rare that it still doesn't stop many people volunteering on trials, some coming time and time again.

1. Find a trial

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Though they exist throughout the UK, London is by far the city with the most medical research centres, this thus gives a person the option of looking at various medical trials at different centres and pick one that fits in their schedule and of course pays well.

As medical trials strongly appeal to the travelling backpacking community that stay in London a few months purely to gain funds for travels around the world, the free TNT magazine that is available outside of major stations usually has an advertisement for research centres, as occasionally does the Big Issue homeless magazine.

There are three main research centre's round London that seem to run trials constantly are;

Guy's Hospital

Guy's Hospital

Guy's Hospital
www.quintilesclinicaltrials.co.uk
Phone 0800 634 1132

Parexcel

HMR (Hammersmith Medical Research)
Website www.hmrlondon.com
Cumberland Avenue
London
NW10 7EW
Telephone: 020 8961 4130
Fax: 020 8961 8665

No one person's experience of a centre is the same as another's, so it would be unfair to list these centre preferentially. Guy's Hospital for example seems to pay more than other centres, while Hammersmith has better food.

One centre that doesn't seem to be rated highly is Richmond Pharmacology in South Croydon. This is quite possibly because they pay less, do not allow volunteers to have mobile phones and ask for a registration fee of 10 pound while other research centre's do not.

Richmond Pharmacology
St George's University London
Cranmer Terrace
Tooting
London
SW17 0RE UK
www.richmondpharmacology.com
Tel: 44 (0) 20 8664 5200
Fax: 44 (0) 20 8664 5201
Email: info@richmondpharmacology.com

Finally, Flu Camp based near Kings Cross is researching treatments for the possible resurgence of the devastating 1918 Flu epidemic that killed more people in a few months than during the entire First World War. Flu Camp pays more than all other centres, though their trials are few and far between.

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