University of Aberdeen

Improving practice and delivery of health care

The University of Aberdeen has been at the forefront of improving health services for over forty years, focussing on how to treat patients in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible.

In the late 1960s there was a surge of new medical treatments and limited resources to invest in them. Around the same time, professors at the University of Aberdeen were interested in gaining a more profound understanding of how patients actually benefit from medical treatments. These two factors drove the University of Aberdeen to research how patients should best be treated whilst also being as efficient as possible in terms of health service resources.

This work is now carried on by the University’s Institute of Applied Health Science which continues to shape clinical and academic practice. It has been responsible for several treatments and recommendations implemented widely in the UK and in other countries. For example, its research led to the now common practice of implanting only one embryo in IVF patients instead of multiple embryos and provided evidence for introducing robotic surgery for prostate cancer. Both have been shown to provide better outcomes for patients while also delivering cost savings in health services.

The work of the Institute has changed policy and practice, influenced legislation and refined academic methods. This involvement at every level of healthcare results in improved and better managed healthcare for millions of people.