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Brighton & Sussex Medical School

Pre-Sponsorship Review Panel (PSRP)

BSMS > Research > Support and governance > Pre-Sponsorship Review Panel (PSRP)

Pre-Sponsorship Review Panel (PSRP)

If you are a researcher, who is principally employed by one of The Brighton and Sussex Joint Clinical Research Office's (JCRO) partner organisations:

  • University Of Sussex
  • University of Brighton
  • University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust
  • Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (SPFT)

and you intend to conduct research involving NHS Patients, their tissue or their data, or involve NHS Staff and some social care setting research, you will need to obtain what is known as sponsorship.

Sponsorship approval is required before you can submit your study for Health Research Authority (HRA) review. The Sponsor has responsibility for the oversight of all Research. The PSRP will review all research applications prior to the Sponsoring Organisation issuing formal Sponsorship. 


Be part of a multi-disciplinary panel supporting research in the NHS 

The Pre-Sponsorship Review Panel (PSRP) started in January 2021 and has already reviewed eight applications. The team are now looking to invite further qualitative and quantitative researchers to join the panel. The PSRP works in collaboration with researchers and sponsors to advise and support the development of high-quality sponsorship applications prior to submission to the HRA (Health Research Authority). 

Any researcher who will be conducting research in the NHS, and is employed by the University of Sussex; University of Brighton; Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust; or University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust will have their application reviewed by the PSRP prior to obtaining sponsorship approval.
Members of the panel are asked to review researcher’s sponsorship applications (IRAS form, protocol and participant documents), bringing comments to the monthly panel meeting (two hours in length) for discussion. You are not expected to attend every meeting however to ensure consistency, the PSRP would like you to commit for two years to be on the panel, and to attend a minimum of three meetings per year.

This is a great opportunity to work with a multi-disciplinary team across four organisations, learning and sharing experience of what makes a good research sponsorship and ethics application. You will play a key role in supporting local researchers and peers.   

Feedback from current panel members:

“It has been an interesting experience, exposing me to different areas of medicine and study methodologies. Time spent reviewing studies has developed my critical appraisal skills and also allowed me to develop coaching and mentoring strategies in feeding back to and supporting users both within and outside the group. It has helped me network with other members of the clinical research community and spend time with the PPI members who bring valuable and sometimes surprising perspectives…allowing me to hone my own study development and essential document design.”

Sally Appleyard, Clinical Academic Fellow

“The pre-sponsorship review panel were supportive throughout the process, providing feedback which allowed us to quickly progress to REC review. The PRSP also provided a valuable opportunity to engage with patients and members of the public in the design of the study and participant materials.” 

Dr Matt Stevens, NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow in Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology, a recent researcher who had their application reviewed by the panel.

To find out more, please contact the team at >

Person ticking off a checklist

What does the PSRP review?

The main focus of the PSRP will be to provide quality and safety feedback on the application to the applicant to meet the sponsoring organisation’s requirement. Expert advice will be provided into the design and conduct of the study. 

The Panel will then make recommendations of your application for sponsorship to the Sponsoring organisation. The panel is made up of Clinical Researchers, quantitative and qualitative researchers, Governance Representatives, disease area and specialist experts, Research Nurses, Patient and Public Involvement members, Statisticians and Trial and Data Managers.

What do you need to do? 

You will need to send the documents listed on the Document Submission Form along with the form to Please see below the meeting dates and deadlines, and download the Pre-Sponsorship Review Panel Document Submission Checklist.
PSRP applications should only be submitted after discussion and support from the Intended Sponsoring Organisation.
Download the Document Submission Checklist here >
If you are submitting a non-CTIMP quantative study, we advise using the following protocol template.
Download the template here >
You will be invited to attend a feedback session (remotely) after the panel meeting, for a period of 15 minutes to discuss the initial feedback to your application with the panel Chair/Deputy.  The Chief Investigator is expected to attend along with another member of the research team if possible.
Deadline for submission (Midday 12pm)  Panel meeting date 
11 January 2023 26 January 2023
1 February 2023
20 February 2023
6 March 2023 23 March 2023
4 April 2023 25 April 2023
3 May 2023 24 May 2023
5 June 2023 27 June 2023
5 July 2023 27 July 2023
6 August 2023 31 August 2023
6 September 2023 25 September 2023
2 October 2023 25 October 2023
6 November 2023 27 November 2023
3 December 2023 18 December 2023
Outcome notification
The panel will provide their advice and comments to you within five days of the meeting. The possible outcomes are:
Application  Action 
 1. Supported - with or without minor amendments. 
 Application to be submitted to Sponsor’s Governance Committee, along with Panel review document
 2. Supported with Modifications recommended.
 Researcher to make modifications, and submit to PSRP Chair/ member for review before Panel Support given. 
 3.  Application unsupported. 
(Either unfeasible to recruit, insurmountable ethical issues, lack of relevant funders, patient safety or other issues raised by the Panel).
 Feedback given to Researcher. Researcher required to make modifications before a full re-submission to a future panel meeting.
Any queries please contact: 

The requirement to obtain PSRP Review and recommendations is being implemented from November 2020.

Note on amendments: Once a project is active you do not need to come back to the PSRP again. Instead you should directly notify your Sponsoring organisations Governance Committee.

computer scans of organs

Contacts and useful links

Any queries please contact:

Contact details of each organisation for sponsorship:

University of Sussex: email

University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust: email

University of Brighton: email Lucy Redhead on

Sussex Partnership Foundation NHS Trust: email

Useful links

Health Research Authority: What approvals and decisions do I need? Read more at

Read more about the JCRO at