DigitalHealth.London Accelerator opens for applications

Call out to the next generation of digital innovation to transform health and care.

Digital products and services have provided vital innovation, support and capacity to the NHS during the Covid-19 pandemic and will continue to do so as the healthcare system moves forward into the subsequent recovery phase of the Covid-19 response. DigitalHealth.London has opened applications to their flagship Accelerator programme for the next generation of digital health companies to transform health and care.

Now in its sixth consecutive year, the NHS delivered programme, funded in part by the European Regional Development Fund, has supported some of the biggest and most effective digital innovations now being used by the NHS in London. Companies including LIVI, Oxehealth, Patchwork Health, Echo, Sweatcoin, and Health Navigator  have all been through the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme. Many of the digital products and services who have provided vital innovation, support and capacity to the NHS during the response to Covid-19 have come through the Accelerator. From enabling remote GP appointments, to transforming NHS temporary staffing and patient facing self-management apps, the Accelerator has supported some of the best digital innovations now being widely used. The need for innovations to solve the problems which face the NHS as it continues to be under pressure and as it recovers from the pandemic, remains vital.

To date the Accelerator has supported 122 innovative digital health companies, with 411 additional contracts signed by those companies during Accelerator support. For every £1 spent on the programme it is estimated over £14 is saved for the NHS*. DigitalHealth.London is passionate about the importance of diversity and inclusion in the long-term success of innovation and transformation within the NHS. To date 15 per cent of the companies supported have been founded by women, 22 per cent have been owned by innovators who identify as Black, Asian or minority ethnic and 2 per cent by a person with a disability*. DigitalHeath.London continues to work to ensure the Accelerator programme is diverse and encourages innovators who identify as being from a minority group to apply to the programme.

Jenny Thomas, Programme Director, DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, said: “The last year and a half in the NHS has seen profound challenges but also incredible progress. NHS Staff and patients have been introduced to new ways of doing things through digital health, and technology has enabled many key services to continue during the Covid-19 pandemic. I am extremely proud of the companies and NHS organisations we have worked with and the role they have played during the pandemic and the vital roles I know they will continue to play as we start to look at supporting the NHS to recover. I am very excited to announce the opening of applications to be part of the next cohort of innovators on the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme – innovators who we will support in being part of this next, pivotal stage for our healthcare system.”

Dr Rishi Das-Gupta, Chief Executive, Health Innovation Network, said: “I am delighted that applications are open for the sixth cohort of the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator. Over the years we have seen so many success stories come out of the programme – innovations that are now making a significant positive impact on health outcomes and ongoing challenges like workforce pressures. The depth of support offered to innovators over a 12-month period is really impressive, providing bespoke assistance and advice through events such as expert-led workshops and facilitating meaningful connections between innovators and NHS organisations with specific challenges.

I look forward to contributing to the development of what I’m sure will be another outstanding cohort of innovators this year. I would urge anyone thinking of applying to join the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator 101 Webinar on Wednesday 4 August at 12:30pm and find out more about the programme and how it might benefit you.”

Theo Blackwell, Chief Digital Officer for London, said: “DigitalHealth.London’s influential Accelerator programme is helping London establish its place as one of the most exciting digital health and care hubs in the world. I am delighted to continue to support the Accelerator as it opens for applications again and I’d urge any digital health innovator who has a product or service that could support the NHS in this challenging time to consider joining this programme.”

Tara Donnelly, Chief Digital Officer of NHSX, said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme is a key player in helping the NHS and social care to make the most of the opportunities digital technologies bring.

“This has never been more important as the NHS looks to recover from the pandemic and I look forward to seeing the next group of innovators bringing their solutions to London’s NHS.”

Phoebe Allen, Quality Improvement Manager, Planned Care, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Working on the ground in the NHS I have witnessed first-hand the rapid progress of digital technology within our healthcare system over the last year. Without some of these innovations the delivery of many services would have been nearly impossible and it is clear that digital technology has a huge role to play in the future of improving patient care and helping the NHS to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme helps connect innovators to NHS teams with an unmet need and provide them with the knowledge they need to truly understand the challenges face by the NHS, its staff and its patients.”

Dr Mridula Pore, CEO and Co-founder, Peppy, Accelerator programme 2020-21, said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator has been instrumental in fostering the perfect environment for Peppy to grow in the NHS. The guidance we have been given, connections brokered with decision makers in NHS organisations and policy makers, and the support we have received from our NHS Navigator has all led to wonderful new opportunities and meaningful growth of our company. We are truly grateful for our Accelerator experience and would like to wish all companies applying good luck in what is a hugely competitive and valuable programme.”

Anas Nader, Co-Founder, Patchwork Health, Accelerator programme 2019-20, said: “We’re so proud of how widely our technology has already been embraced across the NHS and the impact we’re having on the lives of thousands of clinicians. We were delighted to join the 2019-20 cohort of DigitalHealth.London’s Accelerator, a brilliant programme speeding up adoption of digital health innovations in the NHS. The programme has provided us with opportunities to connect with industry experts as well as other healthtech innovators. I’d encourage companies like ours with good ideas and big ambitions to apply.”

DigitalHealth.London’s Accelerator aims to speed up the adoption of technology in London’s NHS, relieving high pressure on services and empowering patients to manage their health. The programme is for digital health companies with a product or service that has high potential to meet the challenges facing the NHS and social care today, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and as detailed in the NHS Long Term Plan. It works with up to 20 SMEs over a 12-month period, giving bespoke support and advice, a programme of expert-led workshops and events and brokering meaningful connections between innovators and NHS organisations with specific challenges. The companies that are successful in getting onto the Accelerator programme are chosen through a rigorous and highly competitive selection process, involving expert NHS and industry panel assessments, interviews and due diligence checks. Companies successful in gaining a place on the programme usually have a product or service that has already been piloted in the NHS and is ready to scale. Through-out the 12 months the programme focuses on engagement with different elements of the health and care system. Company suitability is assessed based both on product maturity (meaning products that are ready to be trialled or bought that have high potential to meet NHS challenges) and on the company’s capacity to benefit from the programme (meaning companies have enough time and staff to engage).

Join a discussion with the Programme Director, an NHS Navigator and some of the SMEs who have been supported by the programme on the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator 101 Webinar on Wednesday 4 August at 12:30pm.

We're here to help

Get in touch for more information about the Accelerator.

Find out more about the programme

Hospital staff use ‘nudge theory’ to boost health and wellbeing during Covid-19

Featured on BBC London TV news and in the Revealing Reality-produced film above, King’s College Hospital (KCH) has adopted the HIN’s behavioural science workforce support campaign #OnlyHuman to help prevent staff burnout caused by the pressures of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Key statistics

King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust employs over 11,000 staff.

Hundreds of staff at King’s College Hospital have embraced ‘nudge theory’ to help protect their wellbeing during the pandemic.

The hospital has become the first to adopt a workforce-wide campaign called #OnlyHuman that uses behavioural insights to prompt frontline staff to take action that helps protect their physical and mental wellbeing. The move comes after King’s trialled the campaign last year and emergency and critical care teams reported a positive impact during a highly challenging period during the pandemic.

The campaign takes a peer-to-peer approach to prompt staff, who sometimes struggle to identify
signs of stress in themselves, to spot early signs of strain within colleagues and use these tools to then take simple actions. These include check in with colleagues regularly to make sure they’re taking breaks, drinking enough water, implementing brief huddles before and after shifts and simply showing kindness to each other.

Behavioural experts maintain that if staff can are prompted to use these behaviours, this creates a ripple effect because social cues reinforce the behaviours and embed them into the workforce.

Devised at pace over eight weeks in response to Covid-19, behavioural insight specialists worked in conjunction with healthcare professionals across multiple trusts to identify key themes to address. The themes included: Checking in, Recharging, Managing Uncertainty, Warming up and down and Kindness.

This was a joint project between behavioural research specialists Revealing Reality and the NHS’s Health Innovation Network, funded by The Health Foundation.

Dr Claire McDonald, Principal Clinical Psychologist and Lead Psychologist for Staff Support at King’s College Hospital, said:

“The Covid-19 pandemic has been an unprecedented time for our frontline health and care staff. Staff have worked tirelessly to care for patients including those who have been critically ill. There is also the broader context of fear and uncertainty about the risks and evolving situation, coupled with an erosion of our natural ways of coping due to restrictions.

“This understandably takes a toll, as we are ‘Only Human’. That’s why we rolled out the campaign, as one strand of our KCH staff support offer, to encourage staff to look after themselves and each other through various tips and simple measures. We brought the campaign into our Wellbeing Hubs and many teams and departments including Emergency and Critical Care. To provide the very best care to patients our staff first need to be well resourced. Extra levels of stress require extra levels of self-care and looking out for each other.”

KCH’s Christine Brown Intensive Care Unit (ICU) Team Leader Mairead Trant said:

“I think this is a fantastic initiative to help frontline staff cope with the emotional strain that sometimes comes with the work we do. It’s important that we take time to look after ourselves and each other and reflect on what happens each day.

“By taking time to talk to someone you trust, it can help greatly to ease the stress and improve mental wellbeing. This initiative really focuses on this theme and will have huge health benefits for staff.”

“I think this is a fantastic initiative to help frontline staff cope with the emotional strain that sometimes comes with the work we do.”KCH’s Christine Brown Intensive Care Unit (ICU) Team Leader Mairead Trant.

Health Innovation Network Programme Director in the Patient Safety and Experience team Catherine Dale said:

“It’s great that King’s College Hospital staff found our #OnlyHuman campaign useful during Covid-19 and have since adopted it.

“When the pandemic hit we recognised the emotional toll it was taking on healthcare staff. Behavioural insights – also known as ‘nudge theory’ – encourage people to act in helpful ways. We applied this approach to develop a suite of materials to help healthcare professional support each other during these enormously challenging times.”

Further information

Download the #OnlyHuman resource pack today.

Download now

We're here to help

Contact our Patient Experience & Patient Safety team.

Email us
 

Community-led health clinics – mass screenings across south London

Health checks in Hindu temple

This video provides an update on a 2019 Innovation Awards grant funded project to host community-led health clinics.

Called ‘Stroke Busting Health Checks’, the project aimed to provide various health checks for up to 1,000 people at greatest risk of stroke and other conditions in Wandsworth.

This co-produced, community-led scheme saw the NHS partner closely with faith and community groups, led by Wandsworth Community Empowerment Network, to use mobile ECG devices to test people for irregular heart rhythms (a warning sign for stroke) and offer wider health advice.

The health checks included Atrial Fibrillation (AF) checks using innovative mobile ECG devices, diabetes testing, blood pressure, cholesterol, and body mass index.

It also provided an opportunity to talk about the risk of smoking, including the direct link to stroke.

Hard to reach groups have greater health inequalities and poorer health outcomes, with Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities at substantially higher risk of poor health and early death, including due to stroke.

Traditional NHS approaches aren’t working well enough – these communities are less likely to attend NHS health checks, despite being the most at risk. Therefore, this team worked in an innovative new way to go to these communities and work alongside local leaders to engage people.

It is widely recognised that hard to reach groups have greater health inequalities and poorer health outcomes, with Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities at substantially higher risk of poor health and early death, including due to stroke.

This video provides an update on a 2019 Innovation Awards grant funded project to host community-led health clinics.

Called ‘Stroke Busting Health Checks’, the project aimed to provide various health checks for up to 1,000 people at greatest risk of stroke and other conditions in Wandsworth.

This co-produced, community-led scheme saw the NHS partner closely with faith and community groups, led by Wandsworth Community Empowerment Network, to use mobile ECG devices to test people for irregular heart rhythms (a warning sign for stroke) and offer wider health advice.

The health checks included Atrial Fibrillation (AF) checks using innovative mobile ECG devices, diabetes testing, blood pressure, cholesterol, and body mass index.

It also provided an opportunity to talk about the risk of smoking, including the direct link to stroke.

Hard to reach groups have greater health inequalities and poorer health outcomes, with Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities at substantially higher risk of poor health and early death, including due to stroke.

Traditional NHS approaches aren’t working well enough – these communities are less likely to attend NHS health checks, despite being the most at risk. Therefore, this team worked in an innovative new way to go to these communities and work alongside local leaders to engage people.

It is widely recognised that hard to reach groups have greater health inequalities and poorer health outcomes, with Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities at substantially higher risk of poor health and early death, including due to stroke.

Get in touch with the project team

Contact the NHS South West London CCG project team directly here.

E-mail

Find out more about HIN Innovaton Grants

See the webpage on the link below.

See the webpage here

New funding opportunities July

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding:

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses Deadline: Open
This is a Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment.

Expression of interest: emergency route for time-critical Covid-19 research Deadline: Open
Apply for funding to support short-term time-sensitive collection of data or samples or rapid turn-around research or analysis to either: a) inform urgent policy or national decision making, b) secure data for future research use. This is a rarely awarded emergency route for exceptional circumstances.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator  Deadline: Open
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up 
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses – for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other Featured Funding:

Young Innovators Awards 2021/22. Deadline: 28 July 2021
Young people (aged 18-30 on 28th July 2021) can apply for an award to make their business idea a reality, which includes a grant for £5,000, a living allowance, and tailored business support.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: May 2021 Deadline: 25 August 2021
UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £25 million for game-changing and commercially viable R&D innovation that can significantly impact the UK economy.

Artificial Intelligence in Health and Care Award. Opens: 28 June. Deadline: 6 September 2021
The Artificial Intelligence (AI) Award is run by the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) in partnership with NHSX and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The Award will support technologies across the spectrum of development: from initial feasibility to evaluation within the NHS. In this round they are interested in innovation projects in the categories of development and clinical evaluation, real-world testing and Initial health system adoption.

SBRI Healthcare – Competition 18: Stroke and Technology Competition. Opening soon (dates to be announced)
Applicants will be invited to tender for projects to develop technology enabled solutions addressing the below challenge: Stroke and Technology, including the following sub-categories: pre-hospital diagnosis, rehabilitation, life after stroke.

Other Funding Opportunities: 

INNOVATE UK:

Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.

Biomedical catalyst 2021: early and late stage awards Deadline: 26 August 2021
UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £18 million to develop innovative healthcare products, technologies, and processes. The aim of this early and late-stage competition is to enable businesses to create a data package that can support the further development of their products.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

BIOTECHNOLOGICAL AND BOLOGICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL:

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation, is a non-departmental public body, and is the largest UK public funder of non-medical bioscience. It predominantly funds scientific research institutes and university research departments in the UK.

Click here for BBSRC funding opportunities

DEFENCE AND SECURITY ACCELERATOR (DASA)

DASA aims to find and fund exploitable innovation to support UK defence and security quickly and effectively, and support UK prosperity.

Open Competition: Deadline: Open
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.
Click here for more information on DASA funding opportunities

THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH RESEARCH

The nation’s largest funder of health and care research, providing the people, facilities and technology for research to thrive.

NIHR i4i Connect – Competition 5 Deadline: Stage 1 – 14 September 2021
i4i Connect is aimed at small-to-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) developing medical devices, in vitro diagnostics and Tier 3a digital health technologies with direct patient benefits, looking to ultimately integrate into the NHS. The funding stream aims to help SMEs reach the next stage in the development pathway to apply for further funding, in particular for an i4i Product Development Award. i4i Connect is researcher-led and does not specify topics for research.

Click here for NIHR funding opportunities

MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (MRC)

The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

MRC molecular and cellular medicine programme grant. Deadline: 1 September 2021
Funding is available from MRC’s Molecular and Cellular Medicine Board to provide large, long-term and renewable programme funding for researchers working in the area of molecular and cellular medicine.

Pre-announcement: experimental medicine grants Deadline: 9 September 2021
Apply for funding to investigate the causes, progression and treatment of human disease. Your project must include an experimental intervention or challenge in humans, focus on addressing mechanistic questions and be academically led.

MRC population and systems medicine programme grant Deadline: 22 September 2021
Funding is available from MRC’s Population and Systems Medicine Board to provide large, long-term and renewable programme funding for researchers working in the area of population and systems medicine.

MRC population and systems medicine research grant. Deadline: 22 September 2021
An MRC research grant is the main way for UK-based medical researchers to apply for researcher-led project funding. You should apply if your research is on population and systems medicine.

MRC neurosciences and mental health research grant Deadline: 29 September 2021
An MRC research grant is the main way for UK-based medical researchers to apply for researcher-led project funding. You should apply if your research is on neurosciences and mental health.

MRC infections and immunity programme grant Deadline: 8 September 2021
Funding is available from MRC’s Infections and Immunity Board to provide large, long-term and renewable programme funding for researchers working in the area of infections and immunity.

Click here for  MRC funding opportunities

ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (ESRC)

Research into inclusive ageing Deadline: June 2021
Apply for research into inclusive ageing. Your project must include a principal investigator based at an eligible research organisation. Your project must be interdisciplinary and focus on both: social and economic inequalities that affect people in later life and practical ways to improve inclusivity in later life.
Your project must address how earlier life experiences affect inequalities in later life.

ESRC Research Grant Deadline: Open call
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the ESRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

Click here for ESRC funding opportunities

ENGINEERING AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (EPSRC):

The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

Digital technologies for health and care Deadline: 21 July 2021
Develop research ideas for novel digital technologies to monitor, diagnose and treat the population remotely. You can be from any research area and must be eligible for EPSRC research grant funding. The first stage of the process is a ‘sandpit’ event. In this three-day online event you will work with other researchers to develop ideas for proposals.

Healthcare technologies investigator-led grant Deadline: Open
Healthcare technologies investigator-led research grants are for researchers at UK higher education institutions, research council institutes, UKRI-approved independent research organisations and NHS bodies. The funder strongly encourage collaboration with relevant healthcare professionals, other researchers, industry, the public sector and other relevant partners. Your application should be in line with the grand challenges of our healthcare technologies theme, e.g., developing future therapies with technologies that enhance efficacy, minimise costs and reduce risks to patients; frontiers of physical intervention, restoring physical function and optimising surgery and other physical interventions with high precision and minimal invasiveness; optimising treatment through effective diagnosis, patient-specific prediction and evidence-based intervention; or transforming community health and care by using real-time information to support patients managing their own health and wellbeing and to allow healthcare professionals to make timely interventions.

Click here for EPSRC funding opportunities

Trusts/Foundations/Charities:

The Health Foundation
Click here for more Health Foundation funding opportunities

The Wellcome Trust
Wellcome Discovery Awards Deadline: November 2021
This scheme provides funding for established researchers and teams/co-applicants (which can include commercial businesses) from any discipline who want to pursue bold and creative research ideas to deliver significant shifts in understanding that could improve human life, health and wellbeing.

Click here for more Wellcome Trust funding opportunities

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities. In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click here to access their database

Other UK Government, Industry, Seed Funds and Loans: 

Zinc Venture Builder 2021 Deadline: 25 June 2021
The Zinc Venture Builder programme is a full time, 12 month programme that exists to build brand new companies that tackle the biggest social challenges in the developed world. The 2021 challenge is “to ensure that every child and young person can develop and maintain good mental and emotional health”.

Medicines and Diagnostics Manufacturing Transformation Fund Deadline: 30 June 2021
New £20 million fund to grow UK life sciences manufacturing opens for applications.

Merck 2021 Research Grants Deadline: 31 August 2021
The Merck research grants programme is open to scientists in all career stages who are affiliated with any research-based institution, university or company. Applicants submit their application for the focus topics containing non-confidential information only. You may apply for more than one grant or submit your application for more than one focus topic. If your application is successful, you are invited to submit a full proposal under confidentiality and join a deep-dive workshop with the other finalists. All applicants will be informed about the decision of the selection committee at the beginning of October.

MedTech NAVIGATOR Innovation Grants Deadline: Open
The MedTech NAVIGATOR Innovation Grants are designed to facilitate such bespoke interactions between SMEs and eligible Knowledge Providers, such as an NHS Trust, or a University, during the product development process. Each Innovation Grant (up to £7,500) is worth 50 per cent of the total project costs up to a maximum of £15,000.  Your business must pay the remaining 50 per cent and any project costs over and above the £15,000 cap.

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK Deadline: Open

BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds

Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme. 

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund Deadline: Open

The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments Deadline: Open

Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from three – 36 months. Interest rates range from 5 – 10 per cent, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund Deadline: Open

HSBC UK has announced a £14 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.  

International: 

The Global Challenges Research Fund
The Newton Fund
European Funding
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

Funding Opportunities News: 

Horizon Europe update: It has been agreed in principle that UK organisations can apply
KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up
UKRI: Funding opportunities

New funding opportunities June

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding:

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses Deadline: Open
This is a Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment.

Expression of interest: emergency route for time-critical Covid-19 research Deadline: Open
Apply for funding to support short-term time-sensitive collection of data or samples or rapid turn-around research or analysis to either: a) inform urgent policy or national decision making, b) secure data for future research use. This is a rarely awarded emergency route for exceptional circumstances.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator  Deadline: Open
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up 
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses – for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other Featured Funding:

Zinc Venture Builder 2021 Deadline: 25 June 2021
The Zinc Venture Builder programme is a full time, 12 month programme that exists to build brand new companies that tackle the biggest social challenges in the developed world. The 2021 challenge is “to ensure that every child and young person can develop and maintain good mental and emotional health”.

Medicines and Diagnostics Manufacturing Transformation Fund Deadline: 30 June 2021
New £20 million fund to grow UK life sciences manufacturing opens for applications.

Biomedical catalyst 2021: early and late stage awards Deadline: 26 August 2021
UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £18 million to develop innovative healthcare products, technologies, and processes. The aim of this early and late-stage competition is to enable businesses to create a data package that can support the further development of their products.

Digital technologies for health and care Deadline: 21 July 2021
Develop research ideas for novel digital technologies to monitor, diagnose and treat the population remotely. You can be from any research area and must be eligible for EPSRC research grant funding. The first stage of the process is a ‘sandpit’ event. In this three-day online event you will work with other researchers to develop ideas for proposals.

MedTech NAVIGATOR Innovation Grants Deadline: rolling grant
The MedTech NAVIGATOR Innovation Grants are designed to facilitate such bespoke interactions between SMEs and eligible Knowledge Providers, such as an NHS Trust, or a University, during the product development process. Each Innovation Grant (up to £7,500) is worth 50% of the total project costs up to a maximum of £15,000.  Your business must pay the remaining 50% and any project costs over and above the £15,000 cap.

Merck 2021 Research Grants Deadline: 31 August 2021
The Merck research grants programme is open to scientists in all career stages who are affiliated with any research-based institution, university or company. Applicants submit their application for the focus topics containing non-confidential information only. You may apply for more than one grant or submit your application for more than one focus topic. If your application is successful, you are invited to submit a full proposal under confidentiality and join a deep-dive workshop with the other finalists. All applicants will be informed about the decision of the selection committee at the beginning of October.

Wellcome Discovery Awards Deadline: November 2021
This scheme provides funding for established researchers and teams/co-applicants (which can include commercial businesses) from any discipline who want to pursue bold and creative research ideas to deliver significant shifts in understanding that could improve human life, health and wellbeing.

Other Funding Opportunities: 

Innovate UK:

Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

Biotechnology and Biological Science Research Council: 

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation, is a non-departmental public body, and is the largest UK public funder of non-medical bioscience. It predominantly funds scientific research institutes and university research departments in the UK.

Click here for BBSRC funding opportunities

Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA):

DASA aims to find and fund exploitable innovation to support UK defence and security quickly and effectively, and support UK prosperity.

Open Competition: Deadline: Open
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.
Click here for more information on DASA funding opportunities

The National Institute for Health Research

The nation’s largest funder of health and care research, providing the people, facilities and technology for research to thrive.

NIHR i4i Product Development Award – Competition 22 Deadline: Stage 1 – 9 June 2021
i4i Product Development Awards (PDA) support translational research and development of medical devices, in vitro diagnostics and high-impact patient-focused digital health technologies for ultimate NHS use. The research proposals may address any disease or health area, provided there is a clear unmet clinical need. There is no upper funding limit for Product Development Awards, but costs must be fully justified.

NIHR i4i Challenge Award – Competition 12 Deadline: Stage 1 – 10 June 2021
i4i Challenge Awards support market-ready innovations by addressing the translational gap between the clinical evaluation of technologies and their adoption, by funding the assessment of MedTech innovations in real-world healthcare settings. The expected output is a disruptive medical device or in vitro diagnostic test that can offer improved outcomes for NHS patients. There is no upper funding limit for the Challenge Awards, but costs must be fully justified.

NIHR i4i Connect – Competition 5 Deadline: Stage 1 – 14 September 2021
i4i Connect is aimed at small-to-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) developing medical devices, in vitro diagnostics and Tier 3a digital health technologies with direct patient benefits, looking to ultimately integrate into the NHS. The funding stream aims to help SMEs reach the next stage in the development pathway to apply for further funding, in particular for an i4i Product Development Award. i4i Connect is researcher-led and does not specify topics for research.

Click here for NIHR funding opportunities

Medical Research Council (MRC)

The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

MRC molecular and cellular medicine programme grant. Deadline: 1 September 2021
Funding is available from MRC’s Molecular and Cellular Medicine Board to provide large, long-term and renewable programme funding for researchers working in the area of molecular and cellular medicine.

Pre-announcement: experimental medicine grants Deadline: 9 September 2021
Apply for funding to investigate the causes, progression and treatment of human disease. Your project must include an experimental intervention or challenge in humans, focus on addressing mechanistic questions and be academically led.

MRC population and systems medicine programme grant Deadline: 22 September 2021
Funding is available from MRC’s Population and Systems Medicine Board to provide large, long-term and renewable programme funding for researchers working in the area of population and systems medicine.

MRC population and systems medicine research grant. Deadline: 22 September 2021
An MRC research grant is the main way for UK-based medical researchers to apply for researcher-led project funding. You should apply if your research is on population and systems medicine.

MRC neurosciences and mental health research grant Deadline: 29 September 2021
An MRC research grant is the main way for UK-based medical researchers to apply for researcher-led project funding. You should apply if your research is on neurosciences and mental health.

MRC infections and immunity programme grant Deadline: 8 September 2021
Funding is available from MRC’s Infections and Immunity Board to provide large, long-term and renewable programme funding for researchers working in the area of infections and immunity.

Click here for  MRC funding opportunities

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

Research into inclusive ageing Deadline: June 2021
Apply for research into inclusive ageing. Your project must include a principal investigator based at an eligible research organisation. Your project must be interdisciplinary and focus on both: social and economic inequalities that affect people in later life and practical ways to improve inclusivity in later life.
Your project must address how earlier life experiences affect inequalities in later life.

ESRC Research Grant Deadline: Open call
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the ESRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

Click here for ESRC funding opportunities

Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC):

The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

Healthcare technologies investigator-led grant Deadline: Open
Healthcare technologies investigator-led research grants are for researchers at UK higher education institutions, research council institutes, UKRI-approved independent research organisations and NHS bodies. The funder strongly encourage collaboration with relevant healthcare professionals, other researchers, industry, the public sector and other relevant partners. Your application should be in line with the grand challenges of our healthcare technologies theme, e.g., developing future therapies with technologies that enhance efficacy, minimise costs and reduce risks to patients; frontiers of physical intervention, restoring physical function and optimising surgery and other physical interventions with high precision and minimal invasiveness; optimising treatment through effective diagnosis, patient-specific prediction and evidence-based intervention; or transforming community health and care by using real-time information to support patients managing their own health and wellbeing and to allow healthcare professionals to make timely interventions.

Click here for EPSRC funding opportunities

TRUSTS/FOUNDATIONS/CHARITIES:

The Health Foundation

Click here for more Health Foundation funding opportunities

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click here to access their database

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans: 

The British Business Bank Deadline: Open

BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds

Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme. 

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund Deadline: Open

The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments Deadline: Open

Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from 3-36 months. Interest rates range from 5% – 10%, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund Deadline: Open

HSBC UK has announced a £14 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.  

International: 

The Global Challenges Research Fund
The Newton Fund
European Funding
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research programExport Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

Funding Opportunities News: 

Horizon Europe update: It has been agreed in principle that UK organisations can apply
KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up
UKRI: Funding opportunities

Innovative programme for chronic joint pain given a sustainable future thanks to new partnership

A new partnership between the Health Innovation Network (HIN) and Orthopaedic Research UK (ORUK) has secured the future of an award-winning programme that helps people with knee, hip and back pain.

The ESCAPE-pain programme, which stands for Enabling Self-Management and Coping with Arthritic Pain using Exercise (ESCAPE), was developed by Professor Mike Hurley at St George’s University of London and Kingston University to help people with knee, hip and back pain. In 2013 it was identified as a local innovation that was ready for adoption by the Health Innovation Network (HIN), the Academic Health Science Network for south London. It has since been supported by Versus Arthritis, Sport England, the NHS Innovation Accelerator (NIA), the AHSN Network.  In 2020 it was named Musculoskeletal (MSK) Initiative of the Year by Health Service Journal.

During the last eight years the HIN has worked with partners to support the scale-up of ESCAPE-pain to over 300 locations across the UK.  It has been used by around 20,000 participants, saving £30million in the costs of health and social care. Participants frequently report that their pain improves, they take fewer medications and find they are more able to get back to doing the things they enjoy.

The longer-term future of the programme has now been secured through a partnership between HIN and national medical charity Orthopaedic Research UK (ORUK). From April 20th, the charity, which works to improve bone, joint and muscle wellbeing through education, training and research, will be operating and developing ESCAPE-pain under licence from the HIN. Key members of the ESCAPE-pain team will continue to run ESCAPE-pain at Orthopaedic Research UK, ensuring a seamless transfer.

“It has been rewarding for all those involved to see the success of ESCAPE-pain in the last eight years. The HIN has supported the development and spread of the programme and we’re delighted to have identified a sustainable future for the programme which will ensure its continued national delivery, so that many more people with chronic joint pain can benefit from this evidence-based approach.”Rishi Das-Gupta, Chief Executive, HIN

Rishi Das-Gupta, Chief Executive, HIN said: “It has been rewarding for all those involved to see the success of ESCAPE-pain in the last eight years. The HIN has supported the development and spread of the programme and we’re delighted to have identified a sustainable future for the programme which will ensure its continued national delivery, so that many more people with chronic joint pain can benefit from this evidence-based approach.”

Adrian Downing, chair of ORUK said: “The difference ESCAPE-pain makes to people with arthritic pain is clear. As one of the few charities devoted to bone, joint and muscle wellbeing, we have a critical role to play in enabling pain-free movement for all. The stark reality is that poor musculoskeletal health is a major and debilitating drain on society.  It is the third largest area of expenditure for the NHS. Tragically, it is also linked to rising levels of obesity, anxiety, isolation and depression.  With such a huge societal impact, we must never accept the inevitability of pain, or indeed its cost.  This is why we are so excited about this partnership with HIN, which gives us a proven and practical way to help the many thousands of people suffering from poor musculoskeletal health. Weare looking forward to working with all the providers who currently deliver ESCAPE-pain services.”

Professor Gary Ford, Chair, The AHSN Network said: “The AHSN Network works to support the adoption and spread of innovations with a strong evidence base addressing significant population health needs. Collectively the AHSNs have supported the adoption of ESCAPE – pain across the country. We are pleased that this partnership will mean that people will continue to benefit from access to ESCAPE-pain in health and leisure facilities local to them.”

Further information

Queries regarding the ESCAPE-pain programme can now be sent to the Orthopaedic Research UK (ORUK) team.

Get in touch

Join us at the Intelligent Health AI Conference for free

An interactive session on AI in social care and care homes will be the focus for a joint HIN/NIHR session at the Intelligent Health 2021, Artificial Intelligence (AI) conference. Along with DigitalHealth.London and AHSN Innovation Exchange, the HIN will be delivering a Challenge session at this virtual conference.

Our challenge session is jointly led between ourselves and the NIHR, and features Head of Healthy Ageing Fay Sibley:

How do we integrate AI based technologies into social care and care homes?

  • Understand the challenges to help care homes become AI ready.
  • Learn from case studies on how they addressed barriers and came up with solutions.
  • Identify the key challenges around gathering data between multiple partners.
  • Understand where learnings from care homes can be translated into other opportunities to support independent living for other patient groups.

Speakers:

  • Fay Sibley, Head of Healthy Ageing, Health Innovation Network
  • Elina Naydenova, CEO & Co-Founder, DigitalHealth.London Accelerator company Feebris
  • Guy Gross, COO of Teladoc in the UK
  • Daniel Casson, digital adviser at Care England, and part of the Digital Social Care Team
  • Darren Crombie, CEO of Upstream Health
  • Jose-Luis Fernandez , Deputy Director of the NIHR School for Social Care

It takes place on 11 May between 10:20 – 11:20.

Another session is being led by DH.L and the Innovation Exchange:

Can AI help the NHS recover from the pandemic – a focus on cancer services

  • How has the use of digital and AI technology helped to speed up current pathways during the pandemic?
  • Exploring the patient journey: Diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation
  • How can we use digital and AI technology to create new pathways?

Speakers:

  • Professor Fiona Gilbert, Professor of Radiology, Head of Department, University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine
  • Danny Ruta, Clinical Artificial Intelligence Lead, Guy’s Cancer Centre, Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust
  • Rayna Patel, Medical Doctor, Co-Founder and CEO, DigitalHealth.London Accelerator alumnus, Vinehealth
  • Peter Mountney, CEO, Odin Vision, currently on the 2020/21 DigitalHealth.London Accelerator
  • Liz O’Riordan, Speaker, Broadcaster and Author of ‘The Complete Guide to Breast Cancer’

As a partner we have been offered a limited number of free tickets to the virtual conference, available on a first come, first served basis. To join us at the conference simply apply the following Discount Code: AHSN200 (select Add Discount Code at the bottom right-hand side of the screen) once you have selected your ticket on the booking form.

Find out more

To view the full programme visit the Intelligent Health AI Conference website.

See programme

St George’s Hospital unveils dual electronic queue management and self check-in

Clinicians in ED

St George’s University Hospital Emergency Department unveils one of UK’s first dual queuing and self check-in system where patients see real time updates of their queue position on TV screens and smartphones.

HIN Innovation Grants supported project

St George’s installed the system after winning a HIN Innovation Grants award in 2019

St George’s University Hospital is one of the first Emergency Departments in the UK to introduce a dual queuing and self check-in.

Patients in the ED can map their queue position through real time updates on TV screens and smartphones.

In a move that reassures patients that they have not been missed or bypassed, the new system called “Patientcheck.in” helps free up emergency reception staff who handle a high volume of questions from patients about their wait and queue position. This has a knock-on delay in booking in new patients. Patientcheck.in – previously called “EDck.in” – also allows patients to complete a brief assessment questionnaire while they wait, using their own smartphone, which saves time during the assessment.

The technology aims to reduce patient anxiety around waiting times and improve efficiency.

Funded by the NHS’s Health Innovation Network, a joint Emergency Department and Transformation project team at St George’s was awarded £9,928 to design and build the software system and install TV monitors in the waiting areas.

Previously, a whiteboard behind the reception desk was used to display general waiting times and updated every hour. Lack of visibility of individual positions in the queue can cause concern for patients, who can worry that they have been forgotten, passed over or missed their call to see the emergency team. This can lead to repeated queries to reception staff about the waiting time and occasionally result in aggressive and abusive behaviours which puts additional pressure on staff.

The second function – the assessment questionnaire – has three major benefits. It empowers patients to tell clinicians why they are in the ED, in their own words using a non-verbal communication channel; reduces clinical administration workload and creates better quality, standardised medical documentation.

Through its integration with Cerner, the hospitals’ electronic health record system, Patientcheck.in sends the questionnaire responses directly into the electronic clinical notes. This reduces note-typing time by around eight minutes per patient. Therefore, if just half of St George’s 400 ED daily attenders complete Patientcheck.in, this equates to a potential saving of more than 26 hours of clinical time every day.

The Health Innovation Network grant was used to develop and implement the system. Now live, the team hope that Patientcheck.in will be adopted by other NHS Emergency Departments. There is also an opportunity to use it in outpatient departments and development projects are underway.

Dr Gabriel Jones, Emergency Medicine Consultant at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“We are passionate about trying new ways to improve patient experience and safety and we believe better queue visibility will give patients reassurance and free up reception team time.
“Emergency departments are pressured and all you want is to do the best for patients. It’s difficult at the moment when we can’t easily answer their top question: when will I be seen? With relatively simple technology we believe we can make a huge difference to their experience and support staff at the same time by reducing interruptions. Greater transparency over the complex queues we operate will help everyone gain a greater understanding of how teams are working to help people.”

“We are passionate about trying new ways to improve patient experience and safety and we believe better queue visibility will give patients reassurance and free up reception team time.”Dr Gabriel Jones, Emergency Medicine Consultant at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Health Innovation Network Programme Director for Innovation Lesley Soden said:
“Hospital emergency departments can often be highly volatile as by their nature they have anxious patients waiting to be seen. Those patients often worry that they have been missed or passed over by other patients and this can lead to repeated questions to hard pressed reception staff, who are then preventing from getting on with their work to triage.
“This is a simple system using existing technology that can improve the patient experience, free up reception staff to focus on registering arriving patients and ultimately lead to faster care in hospital emergency departments.”

HIN Innovation Grants

See more info on the HIN Innovation Grants

Click here to see webpage.

St George's Patientcheck.in

Get more info on St George’s Patientcheck.in

Click here to contact Verity Croll

New funding opportunities April

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding:

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses.  Deadline: Open
This is a Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment.

Expression of interest: emergency route for time-critical Covid-19 research. Deadline: Open
Apply for funding to support short-term time-sensitive collection of data or samples or rapid turn-around research or analysis to either: a) inform urgent policy or national decision making, b) secure data for future research use. This is a rarely awarded emergency route for exceptional circumstances.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator Deadline: Open
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up 
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses – for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other featured funding: 

SBRI Healthcare Cancer Programme: Competition 1. Deadline: 21 April 2021
Working together with NHS England and NHS Improvement, SBRI Healthcare Cancer Programme is delighted to announce a £15 million funding competition for innovation to go to the open market in the field of cancer. The competition invites applications for funding to implement solutions in late-stage development into the following front-line clinical cancer care settings: 1) Early detection and diagnosis of cancer or 2) Diagnostic efficiency of cancer services.

NIHR i4i Product Development Award – Competition 22. Deadline Stage 1 – 9 June 2021
i4i Product Development Awards (PDA) support translational research and development of medical devices, in vitro diagnostics and high-impact patient-focused digital health technologies for ultimate NHS use. The research proposals may address any disease or health area, provided there is a clear unmet clinical need. There is no upper funding limit for Product Development Awards, but costs must be fully justified.

NIHR i4i Challenge Award – Competition 12. Deadline Stage 1 – 10 June 2021
i4i Challenge Awards support market-ready innovations by addressing the translational gap between the clinical evaluation of technologies and their adoption, by funding the assessment of MedTech innovations in real-world healthcare settings. The expected output is a disruptive medical device or in vitro diagnostic test that can offer improved outcomes for NHS patients. There is no upper funding limit for the Challenge Awards, but costs must be fully justified.

Other funding opportunities: 

Innovate UK:

Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.

Expression of interest: transforming UK food systems for health and environment. Deadline: 22 April 2021
Apply for funding to support interdisciplinary research aiming to transform the UK food system for healthy people and a healthy environment. Your project can be led by an eligible UK-based researcher in any discipline and must collaborate with at least one stakeholder organisation.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: Jan 2021 Deadline: 26 May 2021
Opportunity for UK registered organisations to apply for a share of up to £25 million from Innovate UK to deliver game-changing and commercially viable R&D innovation that can significantly impact the UK economy.
For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

Biotechnological and Biological Science Research Council: 

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation, is a non-departmental public body, and is the largest UK public funder of non-medical bioscience. It predominantly funds scientific research institutes and university research departments in the UK.

Click here for BBSRC funding opportunities

Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA)

DASA aims to find and fund exploitable innovation to support UK defence and security quickly and effectively, and support UK prosperity.

Open Competition: Deadline: Open
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.
Click here for more information on DASA funding opportunities

The National Institute for Health Research

The nation’s largest funder of health and care research, providing the people, facilities and technology for research to thrive.

Artificial Intelligence and Racial and Ethnic Inequalities in Health and Care. Deadline: 21 April 2021
This call, funded by the Health Foundation and NHSX, supports research to advance AI and data-driven technologies in health in ways that better meet the needs of minority ethnic populations. The call, which is part of the NHSX’s NHS AI Lab AI Ethics Initiative, will fund two categories of research: Understanding and enabling the opportunities to use AI to address inequalities.

The Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme. Deadline: 5 May 2021
This call is part of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). Proposals should normally evaluate the clinical and cost effectiveness of a health technology. For diagnostic technologies, researchers may suggest equivalent evaluations.

Click here for NIHR funding opportunities.

Medical Research Council (MRC)

The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

Applied global health research: improve health in LMICs. Deadline: 14 April 2021
Apply for funding for applied global health research that will benefit the health of people living in low and middle income countries (LMICs). There is no limit to the amount of funding you can apply for. You can apply if you are: an LMIC-based principal investigator or a UK-based principal investigator working in partnership with LMIC investigators.

Pre-announcement: experimental medicine grants.  Deadline 9 Sep 2021
Apply for funding to investigate the causes, progression and treatment of human disease. Your project must include an experimental intervention or challenge in humans, focus on addressing mechanistic questions and be academically led.
Click here for  MRC funding opportunities

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

ESRC Research Grant. Deadline: Open call
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the ESRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

Click here for ESRC funding opportunities.

Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC):

The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

Healthcare technologies investigator-led grant. Deadline: Open
Healthcare technologies investigator-led research grants are for researchers at UK higher education institutions, research council institutes, UKRI-approved independent research organisations and NHS bodies. The funder strongly encourage collaboration with relevant healthcare professionals, other researchers, industry, the public sector and other relevant partners. Your application should be in line with the grand challenges of our healthcare technologies theme, e.g., developing future therapies with technologies that enhance efficacy, minimise costs and reduce risks to patients; frontiers of physical intervention, restoring physical function and optimising surgery and other physical interventions with high precision and minimal invasiveness; optimising treatment through effective diagnosis, patient-specific prediction and evidence-based intervention; or transforming community health and care by using real-time information to support patients managing their own health and wellbeing and to allow healthcare professionals to make timely interventions.

Click here for EPSRC funding opportunities. 

Trusts/Foundations/Charities: 

The Health Foundation

Click here for more Health Foundation funding opportunities.

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities. In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click here to access their database

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans: 

The British Business Bank: Deadline: Open

BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds.

Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme. 

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Deadline: Open

The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: Open

Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from 3-36 months. Interest rates range from 5 – 10 per cent, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund. Deadline: Open

HSBC UK has announced a £14 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.  

International: 

The Global Challenges Research Fund
The Newton Fund
European Funding
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research programExport Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

Funding opportunities news: 

KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up 
UKRI: Funding opportunities

£100k funding boost to kickstart south London’s most promising new health and care projects

The winners of five Innovation Grants awards have been announced today (31 March) by the Health Innovation Network, working in partnership with Health Education England (HEE). In all there were 32 applications for the awards.

At a glance

  • Five Health Innovation Network Innovation Grants packages of £10,000 to £30,000 have been awarded to help kickstart innovative health and care projects.
  • Winning projects include artificial intelligence rehab for musculoskeletal disorders, a self-care app for patients with inflammatory bowel illness and digital urine screening for chronic kidney disease.
  • Scheme links NHS teams and local boroughs with commercial innovators and guidance from technology experts.
  • Funding means winners can gather real world evidence of impact ahead of wider roll-out.

All of the chosen innovations align to key NHS priorities by addressing major health challenges such as managing musculoskeletal pain, mental health and supporting people with long term conditions. Each project has been given between £10,000 – £30,000 to help them deliver the initial results needed to justify wider-roll out. Many projects are working with local boroughs and a wide range of commercial partners.

This year’s grant winners are:

Dr Joel Parker, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, OXLEAS NHS Foundation Trust: Fun and Fitness is a community sports development programme to support adults with learning disabilities to increase physical exercise and improve physical and mental health outcomes. The project is a bespoke community sports development programme within the Royal Borough of Greenwich that will be formalised into a manual to be shared with services across south London.

Rishi Goel, Consultant Gastroenterologist and Lead for IBD Services, Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust: For the first time in South West London, Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) patients will be able to self-manage their care and communications with clinical teams via a digital patient portal. This project will trial the use of self-monitoring tools through ‘Zesty’ that is integrated with their electronic patient record allowing patients to become empowered with direct involvement in their care.

Kate Bramham, Consultant Nephrologist and Clinical Senior Lecturer, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust: Improving the health of individuals living with diabetes and other long-term conditions using digital urine screening tool Healthy IO for early identification of chronic kidney disease (CKD). This condition is increasingly common and there is growing recognition that early identification and management is critical in delaying progression of the condition as well as related complications. In addition, CKD is can easily go undetected until it’s at the advanced stages.

Professor Heather Jarman, Consultant Nurse in Emergency Care, St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Ben Wanless, Consultant MSK Physiotherapist, St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust: Transforming management of musculoskeletal acute back and leg pain in the Emergency Department through the digital self-management app ‘getUBetter’. This project will pilot prescribing the app to patients discharged from St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Emergency Department with lower back and leg pain.

Nimalini Ajith, Joint and Bone Health Physiotherapist, Public Health, Royal Borough of Kingston and Nicky Wilson, Consultant Physiotherapist, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust: Delivering personalised exercise rehabilitation in Kingston and Southwark using artificial intelligence (AI) provided via a co-designed accessible app. This project aims to improve musculoskeletal health outcomes, promote healthy ageing and reduce demand on the NHS. It will pilot an AI-rehabilitation programme called ‘Good Boost’ in people’s home’s, local community venues and in public swimming pools, leveraging community assets to support people.

The winners were chosen after a rigorous selection process by expert panels. The five teams will be funded and supported by the Health Innovation Network over a 12-month period to pilot their projects in south London and generate vital evidence of impact.

Lesley Soden, Programme Director for Innovation, at the Health Innovation Network, said:

“The impact of Covid-19 on our NHS services means that we need to look at different ways of working to improve health and care for people in south London. This funding is crucial to kick-start innovation projects to test out different innovations and new ways of partnership working.

“NHS teams often struggle to find substantial funding to pilot new ideas in real-world settings to demonstrate the kind of results they need for support for wider roll out across regions and potentially nationally.

“The quality of all this year’s applications was very high and the 2021 Innovation Grants projects we have selected are going to test novel ways of using evidence-based innovations and digital solutions. We are so pleased that our previous grant winners in 2020 have gone on to deliver innovative health and care projects, with a handful being nominated for national awards this year.

“For the 2021 winners we’re looking forward to working with these teams to prove their concepts and demonstrate real world application to enable greater adoption across the health and social care system.”

See more information on the HIN Innovation Grants here.

We're here to help

Find out more about the Innovation Grants.

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QUiPP app improving outcomes for women in threatened preterm labour

For International Women’s Day, we spotlight QUiPP app an innovation that helps to improve outcomes for woman at risk of preterm labour. QUiPP app (Quantitative Innovation in Predicting Preterm birth) determines the risk of pre-term labour more accurately, helping to improve care for women at risk.

Key achievements

  • QUiPP Toolkit is now been recommended both locally and nationally by NHS England and the British Association of Perinatal Medicine.
  • Version one of this toolkit was rapidly rolled out during Covid-19 in April 2020 as it helps decrease unnecessary admissions and transfers.

The app is an innovative and evidence-based diagnostic tool that uses analytics to help clinicians understand the risk of pre-term labour more accurately. This improves the lives of women and babies by identifying those who truly need medical intervention and reassuring those who don’t.

The app was tested across 20 UK sites and the QUiPP Toolkit has now been recommended both locally and nationally by NHS England and the British Association of Perinatal Medicine.

Pre-term labour is a clinical conundrum: it’s very common for women to be at-risk of pre-term labour, but the actual number of women who go on to deliver early is very low. To be safe, this means that many women are currently over-managed: they are treated as though they will deliver early even if the risk is low in reality. Because it is very dangerous to move an early baby once it is delivered, women at risk of pre-term labour are often moved to specialist hospitals further from home with specialist cots for early babies and are given more invasive care.

“Your good idea is a good idea!”Naomi Carlisle, NIHR Clinical Doctoral Research Fellow

This tool has the potential to make a big difference and to improve care for these women. Whereas currently women are simply either ‘high’ or ‘low’ risk, the app calculates a percentage score so that clinicians can understand risk to a much higher degree of accuracy. This reduces the need for women at lower risk to move far from home and frees up the cots for the women who genuinely need them, so that people receive the care that is most appropriate to their risk and are not moved from their family and familiar midwife team if it is not necessary.

How does it work? It’s a clinical decision support tool based on a validated algorithm that incorporates existing point-of-care tests and risk factors. A clinician enters information about a number of biomarkers, such as the scan that measures the cervical length and the swab on quantitative fetal fibronectin. QUiPP uses all the data across risk range for each variable and provides a user-friendly clinical interface. This is more useful for making management decisions and women find it very useful to see and discuss their risk as a percentage, with a highly visual aid to support discussions and decisions around treatment.

The QUiPP app is free and has significant cost-savings associated with reducing unnecessary admissions and interventions. By freeing up NHS capacity for patients in the most need of care (eg maternal beds, neonatal cots), this intervention can save money and transform maternity pathways beyond the preterm birth setting. Qualitative findings suggest that the majority of clinicians involved in triaging threatened preterm labour found using the QUiPP app time-saving, simple and that it increased confidence in decision-making.

Innovator Spotlight

The QUiPP App was developed by King’s College London Department of Women and Children’s Health. Naomi Carlile co-developed the QUiPP App Toolkit with Dr Ellie Watson and Professor Shennan funded by the HIN Innovation Grants. We spoke to Naomi Carlile about the project one year on…

Tell us what has happened since the Innovation Grants:
I recently co-develop a toolkit to enable hospital sites across England to implement a best care pathway (the QUiPP Toolkit) for women who arrive in threatened preterm labour. I am now working on my NIHR Clinical Doctoral Fellowship, which is looking at how the Preterm Birth Surveillance Pathway is implemented across England (the IMPART study).

What has been your proudest moment so far:
I am proud that our QUiPP Toolkit has now been recommended both locally and nationally (by NHS England and the British Association of Perinatal Medicine), ensuring that more mothers and babies are receiving optimum care.

What your advice for future innovators:
Your good idea is a good idea! Get in touch with organisations like HIN south London to help advise on how to get it off the ground!

We're here to help

Do you have a brilliant new idea or digital solution that could improve patient care, make savings for NHS and help meet NHS’s priorities? Then, we would love to hear from you.

Get in touch

New funding opportunities March

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding:

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses.  Deadline: Open
This is a Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment.

Expression of interest: emergency route for time-critical Covid-19 research. Deadline: Open
Apply for funding to support short-term time-sensitive collection of data or samples or rapid turn-around research or analysis to either: a) inform urgent policy or national decision making, b) secure data for future research use. This is a rarely awarded emergency route for exceptional circumstances.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator Deadline: Open
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up 
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses – for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other Featured Funding:

Artificial Intelligence and Racial and Ethnic Inequalities in Health and Care. Deadline: 21 April 2021
This call, funded by the Health Foundation and NHSX, supports research to advance AI and data-driven technologies in health in ways that better meet the needs of minority ethnic populations. The call, which is part of the NHSX’s NHS AI Lab AI Ethics Initiative, will fund two categories of research: Understanding and enabling the opportunities to use AI to address inequalities.

Expression of interest: transforming UK food systems for health and environment. Deadline: 22 April 2021
Apply for funding to support interdisciplinary research aiming to transform the UK food system for healthy people and a healthy environment. Your project can be led by an eligible UK-based researcher in any discipline and must collaborate with at least one stakeholder organisation.

The Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme. Deadline: 5 May 2021
This call is part of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). Proposals should normally evaluate the clinical and cost effectiveness of a health technology. For diagnostic technologies, researchers may suggest equivalent evaluations.

Pre-announcement: experimental medicine grants.  Deadline 9 Sep 2021
Apply for funding to investigate the causes, progression and treatment of human disease. Your project must include an experimental intervention or challenge in humans, focus on addressing mechanistic questions and be academically led.

Other Funding Opportunities: 

INNOVATE UK:

Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.

SBRI improving hip fracture outcomes using data, phase one Deadline: 31 March 2021
Organisations can apply for a share of £160,000 inclusive of VAT to develop a solution which will improve quality of care and outcomes for hip fracture patients.

Applied global health research: improve health in LMICs. Deadline: 14 April 2021
Apply for funding for applied global health research that will benefit the health of people living in low and middle income countries (LMICs). There is no limit to the amount of funding you can apply for. You can apply if you are: an LMIC-based principal investigator or a UK-based principal investigator working in partnership with LMIC investigators.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: Jan 2021 Deadline: 26 May 2021
Opportunity for UK registered organisations to apply for a share of up to £25 million from Innovate UK to deliver game-changing and commercially viable R&D innovation that can significantly impact the UK economy.
For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

BIOTECHNOLOGICAL AND BOLOGICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL:

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation, is a non-departmental public body, and is the largest UK public funder of non-medical bioscience. It predominantly funds scientific research institutes and university research departments in the UK.

Interventions to reduce antibiotic resistance or transmission Deadline: 16 March 2021
Apply for funding to develop or test interventions to reduce the transmission of antibiotic resistance. UK-based researchers must apply as part of a transnational consortium. Your project must focus on at least two One Health areas: human health, animal health and/or environmental health.

Click here for BBSRC funding opportunities

DEFENCE AND SECURITY ACCELERATOR (DASA)

DASA aims to find and fund exploitable innovation to support UK defence and security quickly and effectively, and support UK prosperity.

Open Competition: Deadline: Open
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.
Click here for more information on DASA funding opportunities

THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH RESEARCH

The nation’s largest funder of health and care research, providing the people, facilities and technology for research to thrive.

Research for Patient Benefit – Competition 44. Deadline: 10 March 2021
Proposals are invited for research that involves people with cystic fibrosis, including the evaluation of interventions that could improve the treatment and management of cystic fibrosis and its co-morbidities and complications. The call aims to support robustly designed studies with the potential to make a step-change in improving health outcomes for patients, the public and social care services. We are particularly interested in studies focused around the burden of care and treatment and how they could be simplified, the diagnosis and management of non-tuberculous mycobacteria, the potential benefits of exercise and possible alternative options to physiotherapy. This theme will continue to apply until further notice.

Click here for NIHR funding opportunities.

MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (MRC)

The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

Click here for  MRC funding opportunities

ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (ESRC)

ESRC Research Grant. Deadline: Open call
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the ESRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

Click here for ESRC funding opportunities.

ENGINEERING AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (EPSRC):

The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

Healthcare technologies investigator-led grant. Deadline: Open
Healthcare technologies investigator-led research grants are for researchers at UK higher education institutions, research council institutes, UKRI-approved independent research organisations and NHS bodies. The funder strongly encourage collaboration with relevant healthcare professionals, other researchers, industry, the public sector and other relevant partners. Your application should be in line with the grand challenges of our healthcare technologies theme, e.g., developing future therapies with technologies that enhance efficacy, minimise costs and reduce risks to patients; frontiers of physical intervention, restoring physical function and optimising surgery and other physical interventions with high precision and minimal invasiveness; optimising treatment through effective diagnosis, patient-specific prediction and evidence-based intervention; or transforming community health and care by using real-time information to support patients managing their own health and wellbeing and to allow healthcare professionals to make timely interventions.

Click here for EPSRC funding opportunities. 

Trusts/Foundations/Charities: 

The Health Foundation

Click here for more Health Foundation funding opportunities.

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click here to access their database

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans: 

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK: Deadline: Open

BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds.

Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme. 

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Deadline: Open

The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: Open

Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from three to 36 months. Interest rates range from 5 – 10 per cent, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund. Deadline: Open

HSBC UK has announced a £14 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.

International: 

The Global Challenges Research Fund
The Newton Fund
European Funding
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research programExport Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

Funding Opportunities News: 

KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up 
UKRI: Funding opportunities

New funding opportunities

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding:

UKRI open call for research and innovation ideas to address Covid-19. Deadline: Open
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will support excellent proposals of up to 18 months duration which meet at least one of the following: a) New research or innovation with a clear impact pathway that has the potential (within the period of the award) to deliver a significant contribution to the understanding of, and response to, the Covid-19 pandemic and its impacts. b) Supports the manufacture and/or wide scale adoption of an intervention with significant potential. c) Gathers critical data and resources quickly for future research use.

Pre-announcement: Global coronavirus research and innovation network. Deadline: 23 February 2021
Apply for funding to establish an international network for research into coronaviruses. The network may run for up to four years.

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses.  Deadline: Open
The Chancellor of the Exchequer today announced he is to establish a new Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS (Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme), because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment. The scheme will deliver an initial commitment of £250m of new government funding which will be unlocked by private investment on a match funded basis. The government scheme, which will be developed in partnership with the British Business Bank with the intention of launching for applications in May, will initially be open until the end of September. Over the coming weeks, the Bank will work with government on the details on how the Future Fund will operate and how to apply for the scheme.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.  
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently, there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses
– for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other Featured Funding:

Health Innovation Network – Innovation Grants 2021. Deadline: 1 February 2021
Funding support for innovative projects that either test or pilot an innovation that improves healthcare, with a grant of up to £10,000 to £30,000.

Asthma health technology. Deadline: 11 February 2021
Up to £750,000 is available to support research and development of technologies for diagnosis, monitoring and management tools for asthma.

Pre-announcement: pain research data hub. Deadline: TBC. 
Apply for funding to set up a pain research data hub. You must be a UK research organisation eligible for UKRI funding. The hub will be part of the UKRI and Versus Arthritis Strategic Priority Fund Advanced Pain Discovery Platform.

Other Funding Opportunities: 

Innovate UK:
Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA)

Open Competition: rolling deadline
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.

Click here for more information on DASA funding opportunities

The National Institute for Health Research: 
The nation’s largest funder of health and care research, providing the people, facilities and technology for research to thrive.

Click here for NIHR funding opportunities.

Medical Research Council (MRC) 
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

Joint Global Health Trials. Deadline: 4 February 2021
Trial development applications are typically up to £200k and two years duration and should aim to improve health in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Pre-announcement: mental health data research hub. Deadline: TBC
Apply for funding to set up a mental health data research hub in partnership with Health Data Research UK.

Click here for  MRC funding opportunities

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

Click here for ESRC funding opportunities.

Engineering and Psychical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

Click here for EPSRC funding opportunities. 

Trust and Charities:

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities. In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click here to access their database

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans: 

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK: Deadline: Open.
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds.
Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme.

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: Open.
Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from three-36 months. Interest rates range from 5 – 10 per cent, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund. Deadline: Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.

International:

The Global Challenges Research Fund.
The Newton Fund.
European Funding.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

News:

KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up
UKRI: Funding opportunities

Sara Nelson named as new Deputy Chief Nursing Information Officer for NHSX

Photo of Sara Nelson

DigitalHealth.London’s Sara Nelson, who leads the flagship Accelerator and Digital Pioneer Fellowship programmes, joins NHSX.

Sara Nelson has been announced as the new Deputy Chief Nursing Information Officer for NHSX.

Sara is a Registered General Nurse who has worked in the NHS for over 29 years. She has a wealth of experience in operational and digital nursing leadership having undertaken a number of roles including senior nurse for digital at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust.

More recently Sara has undertaken leadership roles at DigitalHealth.London as an NHS Navigator, Programme Director of the Accelerator and most recently as the Deputy Programme Director of DigitalHealth.London leading the Digital Pioneer Fellowship.

The Digital Pioneer Fellowship supports 37 frontline NHS staff delivering transformation projects through digital innovation. Under Sara’s leadership, both the Digital Pioneer Fellowship and the Accelerator programme, achieved an increase in applications. The Accelerator also experienced an increase in applications from digital innovators identifying as BAME and was recognised as one of the top eight Accelerator programmes for women founders in Europe.

She has been widely recognised as a digital health leader speaking at conferences, writing thought leadership articles and above all building and supporting teams of NHS staff.

Sara has achieved her Post Graduate Diploma in Digital Healthcare Leadership through the NHS Digital Academy and is currently undertaking her MSc dissertation to identify the key factors for a successful CNIO.

Dr Natasha Phillips, Chief Nursing Information Officer at NHSX, said:

“Sara’s appointment by NHSX is another important milestone in the establishment of a strong nursing and midwifery digital leadership community – one which is vital to ensure a nursing and midwifery voice at all levels of digital transformation across the system. The breadth of experience and track record across digital innovation that Sara brings with her is outstanding and I am delighted to welcome her to the team”

“I feel privileged to take up this role working as part of NHSX with the CNIO Natasha Phillips and the CNO team to shape the future of nursing at this pivotal time.”Sara Nelson

Zoe Lelliott, Chief Executive at the Health Innovation Network, said:

“We’re delighted for Sara and know she’ll be brilliant in this well-deserved role.”

Sara Nelson, Deputy Chief Nursing Information Officer at NHSX, said:

“This new national Deputy CNIO role signifies the growing recognition of nursing and midwifery involvement in digital health. I feel privileged to take up this role working as part of NHSX with the CNIO Natasha Phillips and the CNO team to shape the future of nursing at this pivotal time.

“I am one of the many nurses and midwives who did not have computers or technology, as we now know it, when we started and I have seen real benefits to staff and patients, when technology is brought in correctly and is well designed with consideration of patients and staff. This has led me to move away from the traditional nursing leadership roles and towards increasing my understanding of technology and the commercial sectors – growing my knowledge of the barriers and opportunities we can elicit.

“I am looking forward to understanding how we can work together nationally, regionally and in our organisations to bring together that collective voice that listens and learns and is not afraid to speak up.”

Sara will take up her new role part time from 11 January and full time from March.

Find out more about the Accelerator programme

Click the button below to find out more about the Accelerator programme.

Accelerator webpage

Find out more about the Digital Pioneer Fellowship progamme

Click the button below to find out more about the Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme.

Digital Pioneer Fellowship webpage

New Chief Executive announced for the Health Innovation Network (HIN)

Following the appointment of the HIN’s previous CEO Tara Donnelly to Chief Digital Officer at NHSX, Dr Rishi Das-Gupta has been appointed as the new Chief Executive for the Health Innovation Network (HIN).

Dr Das-Gupta will be joining the HIN, the Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) for south London, in March 2021 from his current role as Chief Innovation and Technology Officer at the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Foundation Trust. He is medically qualified, has worked in management consultancy and is the co-founder of a health tech start-up.

Chair of the HIN Richard Barker said: “Congratulations to Rishi on his new role. The HIN board and I are looking forward to working with him to continue to build the HIN’s reputation for leading innovation-enabled transformation in the NHS.”

“ The HIN enjoys a fantastic reputation, with a great track record and I am excited to be joining the team at a time of rapid change in healthcare.”Dr Rishi Das-Gupta

Rishi said: “The HIN enjoys a fantastic reputation, with a great track record and I am excited to be joining the team at a time of rapid change in healthcare. I am passionate about how innovation and technology can support change to improve the health of residents, outcomes for patients, and the working lives of staff working across healthcare and social care.

“The health system is undergoing wide-ranging changes as we recover from the pandemic and the role of the HIN is critical. Working with the team, I hope that my clinical and innovation experience will help us support high-impact programmes across our member organisations in south London.”

Zoe Lelliott will continue as Deputy Chief Executive after acting as interim CEO while Tara Donnelly was on secondment to NHSX. Richard said: “We want to thank Zoe for her tremendous contribution to building momentum at the HIN and for her valuable contributions at national level.”

 

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Thousands of Londoners to benefit from digital urgent care plans

The back of an open ambulance

Shared digital care records mean care home staff, paramedics and hospital emergency department staff know patients’ health and care wishes.

The stats

Over 115,000 Londoners already have a digital urgent care record

Thousands of Londoners will have a greater say over their care and treatment under a £200,000 drive to increase the use of a shared urgent digital care record for ambulances, emergency departments and other urgent care services.

The NHS’s Health Innovation Network (HIN) has won funding to roll out Coordinate My Care (CMC), which ensures health and social care professionals have access to patients’ urgent care plans. Covid-19 has brought into sharp focus the need for patients to set out how they want to be cared for with many preferring to stay at home rather than go into hospital.

Gloria Goldring created her own CMC care plan after a stressful end of life experience when her husband David was critically ill at a care home. He suffered from dementia and despite both agreeing that he did not wish to be resuscitated in a critical emergency, Gloria was told by paramedics that without paperwork to prove his end of life wishes, they would resuscitate David in the ambulance if needed.

“It was a big shock to me because this was something David and I had discussed many years ago and I just felt completely at a loss’, said Gloria Goldring.

Fortunately the trip to the hospital was just five minutes, David did not deteriorate and after Gloria explained to hospital staff that David had said he did not want to be resuscitated, this wish was accepted.

“So when CMC was introduced as a way to be able to flag this up I thought this was absolutely essential for people to understand. I think there is no doubt if we had a plan it would have been flagged up. This would have lessened the stress that I was under because I was in a very terrible state.”

Having already supported over 115,000 Londoners to date, a Coordinate My Care plan puts the patient at the heart of planning their future medical care. The care plan is designed to share the most important, up to date clinical information about the patient, including who to contact in an emergency. This information is then shared with all the health and social care professionals involved in treating them, such as 111, out-of-hours GPs, the London Ambulance Service and hospital emergency departments.

“Helping patients across London to better express their wishes about their care is very important at this time. We are extremely pleased to have this opportunity to work with Coordinate My Care and our NHS and care system colleagues to not only improve the quality of digital urgent care records but speed up the adoption and spread of this technology. ”Zoe Lelliott, Chief Executive of the HIN

The HIN will work closely with NHS and care system colleagues across London to identify a project in each of the five Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STP) areas to accelerate the adoption of CMC to match local priorities and address local opportunities. The scheme will fund local clinicians to focus on championing CMC with their peers and clinical colleagues and help to embed CMC in local care pathways and processes.

Zoe Lelliott, Chief Executive of the HIN, said:
”Helping patients across London to better express their wishes about their care is very important at this time. We are extremely pleased to have this opportunity to work with Coordinate My Care and our NHS and care system colleagues to not only improve the quality of digital urgent care records but speed up the adoption and spread of this technology.

“HIN seeks to speed up spread and adoption, so where innovations like digital urgent care records have been shown to be effective, we believe that it’s important to work with our NHS and care colleagues to adopt this technology to better meet patients’ needs.”

Professor Julia Riley, Founder and Clinical Lead for Coordinate My Care, said:
“As the coronavirus pandemic continues, we are hearing that many patients and families are talking about difficult futures, challenging decisions and appropriate treatments. This partnership with the Health Innovation Network means that health care services across the community will be supported to encourage increasing numbers of patients to have a digital CMC record, to ensure their wishes are recorded, to better their outcomes and to support the urgent care services.”

Find out more about our work with CMC

See the webpage for more on CMC

Click here to see the webpage.

Contact us

Get in touch with our Healthy Ageing team.

Email us here

Celebrating the pioneers and following our future leaders: a reflection on diversity and inclusion in healthcare

Written by Ayobola Chike-Michael, Patient Safety Project Manager & Zoë Lelliott, CEO of Health Innovation Network

Our Diversity Pledges

Read about the AHSN Networks commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion here.

As we round out 2020 and head into a new year—one that many of us have higher hopes for—it’s important to reflect on the progress we’ve made, areas that still require work and where we go from here.

This year, we have seen historic conversations being held on a global scale around the racial injustices and inequalities that plague our social and health systems. This dialogue has largely come as a result of the disturbingly and disproportionately high Covid-19 mortality rates among Black and minority ethnic populations, as well as brutal instances of systemic racism that have occurred internationally.

We have seen examples of this conversation transitioning into positive action across the health and care system, such as the development of NHS England’s London Workforce Race Strategy published in October. Within our own organisation, we are striving to listen to and learn from the experiences of our people, build up a culture of antiracism and meet our AHSN equality and diversity pledges. We know that we still have a lot of collective work to do, both as an organisation serving south London’s population and as a wider system, and we take this responsibility seriously.

As an organisation that works to speed up the best in health and care through innovation, we collaborate with professionals from many walks of life, diverse backgrounds and rich culture every day, all with a commitment to making our healthcare services across south London the very best they can be.

At the Health Innovation Network (HIN), we know that an imperative part of creating and sustaining necessary change is championing the work that has been and is currently being done to create a more equal, diverse and inclusive healthcare system, both for our south London community and beyond. This would not be possible without the work of past, present and future Black leaders – pioneers and voices of equality in our system, both prominently and behind-the-scenes.  

Past leaders 

At the HIN, we pay homage to those who helped pave the way for diversity and inclusion in the NHS, such as the very first black medical surgeon in the British Army, James Africanus Beale Horton (1835 – 1883) who studied medicine here at King’s College, London. Even though his parents were enslaved, his intellectual talents were spotted early by local church leaders who educated him in Sierra Leone, where he later received a British War Office scholarship.

We celebrate pioneers like Kofoworola Abeni Pratt (1915 – 1992), the first black nurse in the NHS, who gained her state registration in 1950 after studying at St Thomas’ Hospital’s Nightingale School. Following Nigerian independence in 1960, she became the first black matron of University College Hospital, Ibadan, and became Chief Nursing Officer for Nigeria in 1965.

Present leaders

Moving to the present, in October, the HIN was privileged to meet nurse, entrepreneur and inventor of the award-winning Neo-slip Neomi Bennett BEM. Neomi spoke openly to staff at the HIN about her experience of racism in UK society and our healthcare system. She explained how she was compelled to clear her name following a conviction for police obstruction – a fight that inspired her to begin the Equality 4 Black Nurses group, which seeks to tackle workplace discrimination. Without her determination, the NHS may have lost out on the revolutionary Neo-slip she invented during her nursing years. The simple design has improved the lives of countless patients who have struggled with hospital tights.

We continue to look to the example of other prominent Black leaders in the NHS like Professor Dame Elizabeth Anionwu. Professor Anionwu works for Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust as a health visitor and tutor working with Black and minority ethnic communities in London. She helped create the very first nurse-led UK Sickle and Thalassaemia Screening and Counselling Centre in Brent, and is a senior lecturer in Community Genetic Counselling, continuing to enrich the lives of the communities she works with.

We are inspired by leaders like Professor Laura Serrant, the first Black head of nursing at a UK university, as a voice for addressing system inequalities. Professor Serrant was awarded an OBE for services to nursing and health policy. Her academic work focuses on racial and ethnic inequalities and cultural safety and her achievements include developing a framework for conducting research with marginalised communities – ‘The Silences Framework’.

Future leaders

Behind the scenes, great work is being carried out every day by Black colleagues in our south London community.

Watch out for Lelly Lelosa Oboh, a Guy’s Hospital consultant pharmacist. She is the first community-based consultant pharmacist in the UK and has been made a Fellow of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain for the importance of her work. She uses her professional leadership role to drive positive change by reducing the risks and maximising the benefits of medicines for older people in community settings. Her influence in pharmacy best-practice has helped shape national policy and encourage the testing of innovative service models.

Our DigitalHealth.London programme recently announced their third cohort of Digital Pioneer Fellows, NHS staff from clinical backgrounds who are paving the way for the future of digital transformation and innovation in the NHS. This year’s Fellows represent a wide variety of backgrounds, roles within the NHS, geographies—both embedded across south London and beyond—and ethnicities. We look forward to seeing the positive change they bring to our shared community.

We could go on and on to speak about the integral work being done by our colleagues. As an organisation full of staff who never cease to be inspired by our community, we promise that we will continue to celebrate the rich and diverse heritage of our NHS and do all that we can to support our Black colleagues each and every day.

We thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

Future leaders

Meet the 2020 Digital Pioneer Fellows and read more about their projects and the estimated impact.

Explore more

London AHSNs work together to embed virtual consultations across the capital

London AHSNs Attend anywhere

Three London Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) worked together to support Trusts in the region to quickly embed virtual consultations to safeguard patients and staff during the pandemic.

The challenge

Covid-19 meant NHS Trusts had to find an alternative to face to face consultations for many patients, to both protect vulnerable patients and safeguard staff. NHS Trusts responded by rapidly accelerating the availability of virtual consultations.

NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE/I) procured a national licence for Attend Anywhere – a secure web-based video consultation solution – for 12 months, to accelerate uptake of video consultations in all secondary care settings, allowing NHS staff to deliver clinics and services virtually.

Prior to Covid-19 there were some trailblazer sites where implementation was being observed and evaluated, but there had not been plans or the infrastructure normally required for system wide implementation at pace. This meant some Trusts found themselves experiencing similar obstacles and challenges, but there was no ‘system learning’ and ‘solution sharing’ mechanism in place.

The solution

Using a collaborative pan-London approach UCLPartners, the Health Innovation Network, and Imperial College Health Partners (the three London AHSNs) have been working with NHSE/I, alongside hospital Trusts to support the roll out, optimisation and long-term use of Attend Anywhere.

By working together across the region, the London AHSNs have been able to help Trusts quickly embed the new technology by responding to their needs and experiences, producing resources and supporting shared learning. The approach included:

  • Successfully hosting two webinars – “Building video consultations into the workflow” and “Equity of Access”, with over ~70 and ~100 attendees, respectively.
  • Sharing existing documentation and best practice directly with Trusts. This was done by:
    • Creating video and audio footage of clinicians sharing their experience of delivering virtual consultations during the pandemic.
    • Bringing together clinical guides and useful resources, in one place as an impartial, easy-reference resource library.
    • Sharing various resources with Trusts directly through NHS Futures, including Standard Operating Procedures, training packages, equality impact assessments, patient-facing material and Trust individual rollout materials.
    • Producing both a patient and clinician survey template and working with a small number of London Trusts to implement/tailor surveys to meet local needs and gather a first-look evidence base of video consultation usage across London.

Impact and outcomes

The AHSNs engaged with 29 Trusts across London and provided opportunities for colleagues in Trusts to hear from others and share tips of what worked in practice.

This helped to build a community of colleagues working on similar challenges and solutions around the implementation of virtual consultations. For common issues that were not resolved the AHSNs provided a strong platform for these issues to be highlighted and escalated. AHSNs also facilitated conversations about collaboration for sharing best practice and tools.

“ The AHSNs bring a wealth of experience and expertise in working with clinical teams to support them understand, adopt and spread this relatively new innovation ” Vin Dawakar, London Regional Medical Director & CCIO, NHSE & I

Feedback

Vin Dawakar, London Regional Medical Director & CCIO, NHSE & I said: “In response to the initial wave of Covid-19 infections, the AHSNs in London mobilised in days to collaborate with NHSE & I (London), to support acute Trust healthcare providers in London to rapidly deploy, take up and embed video consultations as a way to continue to deliver clinical services to patients in a risk-free way.

 “The AHSNs bring a wealth of experience and expertise in working with clinical teams to support them understand, adopt and spread this relatively new innovation which allowed the London region to lead the successful use of video across the country – a big ‘thank you’ to our AHSN colleagues!”

Claire Kennedy, Project Manager, Service Transformation, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust said: “The AHSN team was key to facilitating collaboration that allowed us to become a part of influential brainstorming sessions and informative conversations with a range of people across the London.

“As a result, I had the opportunity to think bigger, to influence across a system and create better things to help our patients access the best care.”

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If you want to find out more about our Technology projects, please click below to learn more or contact the team.

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Innovation Grants 2021

We are looking to support innovative projects that either test or pilot an innovation that improves healthcare, with a grant of up to £10,000 to £30,000

Last year we funded 10 incredible projects that either supported innovative practice that could be spread and adopted across the health and social care landscape or encouraged cross-boundary working in areas of research, education and improvement in healthcare services.

This year, the HIN Innovation Grants programme is open for applications from 1 December 2020 and close at 9am on Monday 1 February 2021. Applications are invited from organisations who are involved in the delivery/commissioning of health/social care in south London. We are encouraging collaborative bids. In all applications, the lead applicant must be a member of the Health Innovation Network.

All applications will be evaluated against the following criteria. If the proposed project does not align with most of these goals, it may reduce the likelihood of being awarded a grant. Prior to starting the application consider whether the project fits the requirements.

We would strongly encourage projects that collaborate with a commercial partner or developer of an innovation or product you wish to trial. In particular, testing of an innovation that is market ready and supported by the HIN, the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme, or the National Innovation Accelerator (NIA) would be welcomed. We would not exclude partnering with other commercial innovations.

If you would like to discuss your application or request support with the form, please contact hin.innovationgrants@nhs.net to arrange a call (up to 30min) with our team.

Applications are now open and will close on 1 February 2021 at 9am.

Key Dates

5 March 2021: All applicants notified of the outcome

18 March 2021: Video conference on evaluation for grant recipients

1 April 2021: Innovation Grant Programme start date

If you have any questions, please email hin.innovationgrants@nhs.net, before 4pm on 29 January 2021.

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Apply for the innovation grants by downloading and completing the form and reading the guidance notes.

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New funding opportunities

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding:

UKRI open call for research and innovation ideas to address Covid-19. Deadline: Open
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will support excellent proposals of up to 18 months duration which meet at least one of the following: a) New research or innovation with a clear impact pathway that has the potential (within the period of the award) to deliver a significant contribution to the understanding of, and response to, the Covid-19 pandemic and its impacts. b) Supports the manufacture and/or wide scale adoption of an intervention with significant potential. c) Gathers critical data and resources quickly for future research use.

Pre-announcement: Global coronavirus research and innovation network. Deadline: 23 February 2021
Apply for funding to establish an international network for research into coronaviruses. The network may run for up to four years.

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses.  Deadline: Open
The Chancellor of the Exchequer today announced he is to establish a new Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS (Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme), because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment. The scheme will deliver an initial commitment of £250m of new government funding which will be unlocked by private investment on a match funded basis. The government scheme, which will be developed in partnership with the British Business Bank with the intention of launching for applications in May, will initially be open until the end of September. Over the coming weeks, the Bank will work with government on the details on how the Future Fund will operate and how to apply for the scheme.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.  
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently, there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses
– for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other Featured Funding:

Health Innovation Network – Innovation Grants 2021. Deadline: 1 February 2021
Funding support for innovative projects that either test or pilot an innovation that improves healthcare, with a grant of up to £10,000 to £30,000.

Asthma health technology. Deadline: 11 February 2021
Up to £750,000 is available to support research and development of technologies for diagnosis, monitoring and management tools for asthma.

Pre-announcement: pain research data hub. Deadline: TBC. 
Apply for funding to set up a pain research data hub. You must be a UK research organisation eligible for UKRI funding. The hub will be part of the UKRI and Versus Arthritis Strategic Priority Fund Advanced Pain Discovery Platform.

Other Funding Opportunities: 

Innovate UK:
Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA)

Open Competition: rolling deadline
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.

Click here for more information on DASA funding opportunities

The National Institute for Health Research: 
The nation’s largest funder of health and care research, providing the people, facilities and technology for research to thrive.

Click here for NIHR funding opportunities.

Medical Research Council (MRC) 
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

Joint Global Health Trials. Deadline: 4 February 2021
Trial development applications are typically up to £200k and two years duration and should aim to improve health in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Pre-announcement: mental health data research hub. Deadline: TBC
Apply for funding to set up a mental health data research hub in partnership with Health Data Research UK.

Click here for  MRC funding opportunities

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

Click here for ESRC funding opportunities.

Engineering and Psychical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

Click here for EPSRC funding opportunities. 

Trust and Charities:

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities. In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click here to access their database

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans: 

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK: Deadline: Open.
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds.
Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme.

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: Open.
Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from three-36 months. Interest rates range from 5 – 10 per cent, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund. Deadline: Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.

International:

The Global Challenges Research Fund.
The Newton Fund.
European Funding.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

News:

KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up
UKRI: Funding opportunities

South London drive to detect and treat irregular heart rhythm helps prevent an estimated 100 deaths and 400 strokes

Health checks in Hindu temple

Use of hand held devices to test for irregular heart rhythm in GP surgeries, care homes and religious settings is helping prevent strokes and saving lives.

The stats

Since the start of the programme, the number of additional people with AF receiving treatment each year has increased by almost 300,000 nationally.

New NHS figures reveal that a four year south London programme to improve the detection and management of an irregular heart rhythm known as Atrial Fibrillation (AF) is estimated to have helped prevent 400 strokes and saved 100 lives. These figures are based on modelling and a calculated reduction in risk.

In addition, the NHS’s Health Innovation Network in south London initiative over the last four years has reduced costs associated with strokes and deaths linked to AF by an estimated £5m and lowered social care costs by £4m.

AF is the most common type of irregular heart rhythm and is a major risk factor for stroke because it makes it more likely that blood clots will form in heart chambers and reach the brain, which contributes to 1 in 5 strokes and is associated with an increased rate of mortality. It is estimated that 1.4 million people in England have AF but nearly a third of these cases go undetected, and people with a diagnosis don’t always receive treatment, resulting in potentially avoidable strokes.

The programme consists of on-the-spot AF checks by clinicians in GP surgeries, care homes and ‘virtual clinics’ in community settings such as churches, mosques and Hindu temples using handheld devices.

Shan, aged 57 from Wimbledon and a worshipper at the Shree Ghanapathy Temple in south London, had his heart rhythm checked as part of a ‘mass screening’ earlier this year. He said:
“Today I had my blood pressure and heart rate checked. Everything is normal so I’m glad to hear that. This is a good thing so you can reduce the risk. We don’t have regular health check-ups but today we were able to see if we have anything wrong.
“My family back home and relatives have had heart attacks and diabetes. So this is also good for our peace of mind.”

AF is the most common type of irregular heart rhythm and can increase risk of stroke, leaving survivors with disabling consequences. Around 200,000 people in the UK develop AF each year. Detecting AF early and making sure people are given optimal treatment – usually blood-thinning medication to prevent clots (anticoagulants) reduces the risk of stroke by two thirds. It’s estimated that the impact of newly treating 70 high risk AF patients is up to three strokes prevented, saving the health system £37,000 in the first year.

This is part of an NHS programme, delivered by the AHSN Network in England. Nationally, this is estimated to have saved the NHS £158m and £105m in social care costs.

Since the start of the programme, the number of additional people with AF receiving treatment each year has increased by almost 300,000 nationally.

“A stroke can be devastating both physically and psychologically for patients and their families.”Oliver Brady, Programme Director for Diabetes and Mental Health at the Health Innovation Network

Oliver Brady, Programme Director for Diabetes and Mental Health at the Health Innovation Network in south London, said: “A stroke can be devastating both physically and psychologically for patients and their families. Yet with the new digital tools available we are able to detect and manage AF and ensure that fewer lives are lost and people with the condition can continue to live normal lives.
“The HIN will continue working with its local partners to proactively go into high impact settings to carry out these vital health checks.”

Professor Gary Ford, Chief Executive of Oxford Academic Health Science Network and Consultant Stroke Physician said: “Identifying people who have AF and ensuring they are provided with the most appropriate anticoagulant therapy can significantly reduce their risk of having a stroke.

“The work we have undertaken with our partners in primary care, alongside others in both the NHS and charity sector, has prevented thousands of people having a stroke. The latest data also shows that these measures have resulted in significant cost saving to the NHS and social care, with £158 million and £105 million saved respectively”

Between April and December 2018, Guy’s and St Thomas’ carried out a total of 590 pulse rhythm checks in its community podiatry clinics using Kardia devices.
GSTT community podiatrist Monica Fisk said:
“We detected 27 people with possible AF, these patients were referred on to their GP for a 12-lead ECG to confirm the diagnoses and to initiate anticoagulation treatment where indicated. The prevalence rate in our community podiatry clinics was 4.6 per cent or 1 in 22 people tested. This is higher than what is found in the general population as we tend to treat patients at higher risk of the disease. I therefore feel podiatry clinics are good settings for identifying undiagnosed AF and this opportunistic testing was well received by our patients.”

One GSTT patient said: “I never expected to attend the podiatry clinic for a foot problem and be identified as having possible AF. If it wasn’t for that appointment I don’t know what could have happened. My GP has now placed me on anticoagulation therapy and I am ever grateful to the podiatry service for going above and beyond.”

Explore our AF work

Improving AF detection in high-impact settings.

Click to view our new reports

Remote Monitoring: Keeping patients safe in the community

remote monitoring for diabetes

COVID-19 has accelerated the speed of adoption by NHS providers of technology to deliver care including the use of remote monitoring solutions.

This Innovation Exchange webinar from 9-10.30am, 10 December presented by the Health Innovation Network and DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, will focus upon maximising the use of technology to monitor patients’ health conditions remotely outside of the traditional care settings and empower patients with long term conditions to manage their health better through remote monitoring.

Speakers include:

  • Tara Donnelley, Chief Digital Officer, NHSX on the National Perspective on Remote Monitoring.
  • Oliver Brady and Dr Neel Basudev (Health Innovation Network’s diabetes team)
  • Chris Gumble (Project Manager, SWL CCG) on You & Type 2 Remote diabetes annual reviews – the art of the possible.

Hear short pitches from 5 health tech companies on the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator whose solutions can remotely measure and monitor vital signs including blood pressure, spirometry, oxygen saturation levels, and heart rhythms to name a few.

To attend, please contact laura.walton9@nhs.net to request an invitation.

TfL and London Ambulance Service trial workplace diabetes education to improve staff health

Image of map of London with diabetes cases

Two major London employers embedded clinically-proven Structured Education for Type 1 diabetes to tackle one of London’s biggest health challenges.

The stats

671K Londoners live with diabetes and employers in the capital lose an average £250K due to ill health each year.

An initiative with two major London employers has shown that face to face and virtual diabetes education can be successfully embedded into the workplace to improve the health of staff with Type 2 diabetes.

This comes as the NHS faces increased pressure due to the condition with over 671,000 Londoners living with diabetes and employers in the capital losing an average £250,000 due to ill health each year.

An evaluation of a project by the NHS’s Health Innovation Network with the London Ambulance Service and Transport for London (TfL) has found significant behaviour change in staff toward healthier lifestyle and eating.

Over 60 staff members from the employers attended either online or face to face structured education courses, which is recommended as a vital part of care for people with Type 2 diabetes by the NHS’s clinical standards guardian National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).

Structured Education (SE) is clinically proven to help people living with diabetes to make changes to their diet and lifestyle that help them to self-manage their condition. It also offers peer support after being diagnosed with the life-changing condition.

Staff were offered a choice to attend a course delivered remotely either by Second Nature or Oviva, which both offer programmes for people with Type 2 diabetes ranging between eight and 12 weeks. Course sessions were delivered through a trained coach with access to online advice, support and information which participants could access through their phones, tablet or computer.

An in-house session to improve self-management was delivered by trained diabetes education experts from Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. They delivered face-to-face group education using the DESMOND Type 2 Management Module, used widely across the NHS, for up to 14 people in a one-day session and a variety of resource materials were provided to participants at the session.

Twenty five staff members completed the Oviva programme and clocked up an average weight loss after eight weeks of 2.3kg, with evidence showing that participant weight loss continues up to 12 months after the programme.
For the 37 staff who completed the Second Nature programme, the average weight loss after three months was 5.7kg.

Staff taking part in this evaluation overwhelmingly welcomed the offer, and to attend, SE courses at their workplace. There was also very high approval of the three programmes from participants. Those completing either the in-house DESMOND programme or one of the remote programmes said their diabetes education needs had been met.

TfL staff who made use of the programmes said: “I think it’s a good thing that TfL are actively promoting this sort of thing. It’s a positive thing in terms of awareness around health and the impact of different health conditions. It’s good that workplaces are doing more to make people aware [of people with different health needs].”
“It’s a powerful message to send to the employee: we’re not just interested in your productivity, but also your health and how to look after yourself.”

TfL was due to start another round of the programme in September 2020 but brought it forward to May. TfL’s Health and Wellbeing Improvement Programme Manager Fernanda Siusta said:
“It was great to be involved in this work which has had such a positive effect on so many participants’ lives. While the pandemic led us to bringing the work forward, we know that for some this has been key to ensuring they stay on track if they had to shield or if they were unable to see their usual medical teams while the NHS handled the response to coronavirus.”

Head of Healthy Workforce at London Ambulance Service Gill Heuchan said:

“As someone with type 2 diabetes I know how difficult it can be when you are first diagnosed and have to attend diabetes education courses. We started the initiative at London Ambulance Service because we are very aware that we have staff whose lives do not fit the norm. Call handlers, medics and support staff are often working busy 12-hour shifts and during unsociable hours, so they can find it even harder to attend courses on learning how to manage their diabetes.

“It has been a fantastic opportunity for staff to have flexible support, not just about diabetes, but about lifestyle choices and general health on a tablet device, which they can utilise easily to fit their lifestyle. Staff who have signed up have fed back positively and many have been able to achieve personal goals because of the support they have received. This initiative has also helped form part of our ‘Wellbeing at Work’ support package for staff which aims to help them manage their own health and wellbeing in and outside of work.”

“We started the initiative at London Ambulance Service because we are very aware that we have staff whose lives do not fit the norm. Call handlers, medics and support staff are often working busy 12-hour shifts and during unsociable hours, so they can find it even harder to attend courses on learning how to manage their diabetes ”Head of Healthy Workforce at London Ambulance Service Gill Heuchan

Health Innovation Network Diabetes Programme Manager Rod Watson said:

”Diabetes is one of our biggest health challenges. Not only is it a leading cause of premature mortality with over 22,000 additional deaths each year, but it doubles an individual’s risk of cardiovascular disease and costs over £10 billion every year to manage.

“The HIN has successfully sped up the spread and adoption of a range of evidence-based programmes both face to face and digital to help prevent and treat the condition.
“We spend a third of our time at work so it makes sense for us to work with employers to help embed programmes directly into the workplace. This project shows that this is possible and I would urge all employers to read through our findings.”

More information

Click on the button below for the report and two page summary.

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Self care is vital to help tackle the country’s biggest health challenge

Think-Diabetes

Blog

Diabetes is one of the country’s biggest health challenges with more than 3.1 million people diagnosed with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes in England. It’s a condition that can ruin lives and cause deadly complications but as Faye Edwards argues, it’s never been easier to access support to self-care.

Not only is diabetes a leading cause of premature mortality with over 22,000 additional deaths each year, but it also doubles an individual’s risk of cardiovascular disease. The cost of diabetes to the NHS budget exceeds £10 billion every year and this is expected to grow dramatically over the next 20 years. Recent research has shown that people with diabetes are at a higher risk of complications should they contract Covid-19.

But as we celebrate National Self Care Week, the good news for people with diabetes is that it has never been easier to stay in control of their diabetes and prevent life changing complications. The key to this is supportive, holistic diabetes education.

Learning how to lead a healthy lifestyle through diet and exercise, manage medications, maintain good mental wellbeing and how to prevent long term complications is fundamental to ensuring that people feel confident in managing day to day life with diabetes, and to ensure improvements in terms of weight loss, glycaemic control, and general wellbeing.

An innovative new service from the NHS in south London, Diabetes Book & Learn, allows people with diabetes access to education support courses at the click of a mouse. If you have diabetes you can refer yourself to the service via the website, or you can ask your GP or practice nurse to refer you. The Diabetes Book and Learn Website has a wide range of courses available to suit all needs, including a variety of language preferences and delivery modes including face to face or via a mobile app. Once referred, you can choose the most suitable option for you, or if you are unsure, our call centre team are on hand to help you decide.

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic it has been crucial to ensure that the service continues to provide high quality support and education for people with diabetes. We have all had to adjust to receiving healthcare via digital means, whether that is online or over the phone. The Diabetes Book and Learn service has been agile in its response to the situation, moving face to face courses online and delivering them via video conference, and increasing the access to 1:1 diabetes education support delivered via telephone and mobile application.

The Diabetes Book and Learn service is the first of its kind, uniting diabetes education providers from across our region to offer a wide range of educational support options for people with diabetes, that would be impossible for one single organisation to achieve alone.

Now more than ever it is vital that all of us strive to live as healthily as possible, especially if we have a long-term condition such as diabetes. Receiving such a diagnosis in the current pandemic can be frightening and isolating – likewise, living with diabetes can feel physically and mentally exhausting. Education and support are key to providing a fresh perspective and confidence to people for whom living with diabetes is tough. It can help with weight loss and mental wellbeing, provide much needed peer support, reassurance, and guidance.

The key to better health and diabetes control starts with education and good self-care – and all of this is available at the click of a mouse.

We're here to help

Explore our Diabetes projects to learn more about how we support self-management to minimise the impact of diabetes on the lives of people with the condition.

Learn about our diabetes work

Meet 20 digital health innovators set to transform London’s health and care system

Digital Health London Accelerator cohort 5 announced

The 20 small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) selected on cohort 5 of the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme has been announced.

This year saw an increase in the number and average score of the applications, making it the most competitive selection process since the programme began four years ago. The 20 companies selected for the Accelerator 2020-2021 programme have digital solutions or services that have the highest potential to meet London’s NHS and social care challenges. From patient self-management tools and femtech, to digitizing NHS processes as well as artificial intelligence and cutting-edge machine learning, this group of 20 digital health innovators is set to transform key aspects of health and social care in London and beyond.

Now in its fifth consecutive year, the NHS delivered programme, match-funded by the European Regional Development Fund, has supported some of the most effective digital innovations now being used by the NHS. Many of the digital products and services currently providing vital innovation, support and capacity to the NHS during the response to COVID-19, have come through the Accelerator programme.

Jenny Thomas, Programme Director, DigitalHealth.London said: “We are delighted to announce today the 20 digital health SMEs on our fifth DigitalHealth.London Accelerator cohort. After what was the most competitive selection process yet, it is clear that digital health in London is rapidly growing and supporting patients and our NHS and social care services.

“This year has been a defining moment for digital health as it has been at the forefront of the COVID-19 response and will continue to be part of our country’s recovery in the months and years ahead. These 20 SMEs are all ones to watch and we look forward to working with them and playing our part in supporting the NHS and social care through digital transformation.”

Theo Blackwell, Chief Digital Officer for London, said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator ensures that London is at the forefront of digital innovation in health and social care. Many of the digital health technologies and products that are currently supporting our NHS staff and patients have come through the Accelerator. It has become vital to a future where Londoners benefit from the latest technologies to support their health. The pandemic has brought many challenges and pressures to London, the Accelerator is fast tracking digital health innovations and supporting this dynamic and crucial sector to grow.”

Tara Donnelly, Chief Digital Officer, NHSX, said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator is part of a digital revolution in the NHS that continues rapidly to develop, and we will continue to support innovative organisations delivering ground-breaking work.

“This programme has established itself as an important player in supporting the NHS and social care to make the most of the opportunities digital healthtech offers.”

DigitalHealth.London’s Accelerator aims to speed up the adoption of technology in London’s NHS, relieving high pressure on services and empowering patients to manage their health. For every £1 spent on the Accelerator programme it is estimated £14.50 is saved for the NHS*. It works with up to 20 high potential SMEs over a 12-month period, giving bespoke support and advice, a programme of expert-led workshops and events, and brokering meaningful connections between innovators and NHS organisations with specific challenges. The companies successful in getting onto the Accelerator programme have been chosen through a rigorous and highly competitive selection process, involving expert NHS and industry panel assessments, interviews, and due diligence checks.

The SMEs selected for the 2020-2021 DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme are:

  • ART Healthcare Software – psHEALTH’s software enables efficient processing of patient referrals, improves capacity planning and patient access.
  • Concentric Health – A digital consent application, with remote consent functionality.
  • Feebris – An Artificial Intelligence powered platform that enables carers to conduct high quality check-ups in communities, triage health issues proactively, and escalate concerns to clinician.
  • Bleepa® – Feedback Medical’s CE marked digital medical imaging communications tool that enables clinicians to view and discuss patient cases at the touch of a button.
  • FibriCheck – A certified solution for symptomatic/known Atrial Fibrillation (AF) patients, and a cost-effective, scalable detection tool for asymptomatic/intermittent patients.
  • getUBetter – An evidence-based, CE marked, digital self-management platform for all common musculoskeletal injuries and conditions.
  • EXi – An app that analyses user’s health and prescribes a personalised physical activity plan.
  • Mendelian – A software solution that supports earlier diagnosis of rare diseases.
  • Odin Vision – An Artificial Intelligence enabled applications for endoscopy and aids endoscopists to detect and characterise polyps during colonoscopy procedures.
  • Oxehealth – A contact-free vision-based patient monitoring platform for use across inpatient and residential care facilities.
  • patientMpower – remote monitoring application across a range of pulmonary conditions, including pulmonary fibrosis, cystic fibrosis, lung transplant and COVID-19.
  • Patients Know Best – A platform that allows patients and professionals to access healthcare records – anytime, anywhere.
  • Peppy Health – app that provides health support through life’s big transitions, such as becoming a parent, going through the menopause or going through a fertility journey.
  • Phlo Digital Pharmacy – a rapid on-demand same-day pharmacy delivery service empowering patients to better manage their healthcare.
  • Regimen – a digital therapy for the 30% of men struggling with erectile dysfunction.
  • S12 Solutions – an app and website which helps Approved Mental Health Professionals (AMHPs) and s.12 doctors to efficiently complete Mental Health Act (MHA) processes.
  • Solutions 4 Health – a CQC registered provider of both lifestyle and clinical services using artificial intelligence, digital health and clinical healthcare.
  • Vantage Health – An Artificial Intelligence platform that transforms the referral process by helping clinicians to direct patients to the best care, based on pathway guidance.
  • PocDoc – A digital platform and associated tests from Vital Signs Solutions that allow individuals to test themselves for major diseases using their smartphone, with results available immediately, see a full health assessment and have access to follow on care where required.
  • VUI Diagnostics – A plug and play retinal screening device and companion software for simple, affordable and accurate retinal screening.

Further reading

For more information about each SME visit the DigitalHealth.London website.

See selected companies

Hundreds of young people with eating disorders to benefit from ‘gold standard’ NHS treatment

Clinician with woman

Rapid eating disorder intervention for young people developed in south London to be rolled out nationally.

The problem

Between 600,000 and 725,000 people in the United Kingdom have one or more eating disorders.

SOURCE: National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, 2015

Young people with eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia are to get rapid access to specialist NHS treatment across England.

The NHS has announced that it will scale up an early intervention service developed by Health Innovation Network (HIN) members King’s College London and South London and Maudsley NHS Trust (SLaM).

The model supports young people in the early stages of eating disorders.

The new service to be rolled out in 18 sites across the country builds on a successful scheme shown to help 16-25 year olds in London, with one patient describing it as ‘the gold standard’ of care.

With eating disorders causing serious physical and mental health problems which can last decades, the expanded service will target care to those who have been living with a condition for fewer than three years, to tackle problems before they escalate.

Teens or young adults coming forward who would benefit from treatment can be contacted within 48 hours and with treatment beginning as soon as two weeks later.

The approach is based on a successful model developed and trialled at King’s College London and the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, with support from the Health Foundation. It reduces wait times and improves patients’ outcomes.

The investment in the early intervention – First Episode Rapid Early Intervention for Eating Disorders (FREED) – service is part of the NHS Long Term Plan commitment to provide an additional £1 billion a year by 2023/24 to expand and improve community mental health care so adults, including those with an eating disorder, can get earlier access to care, as close to home as possible.

Professor Tim Kendall, NHS England’s National Clinical Director for Mental Health, said:

“Young people who are struggling with an eating disorder stand to benefit significantly with the roll out of this new NHS service which will provide access to early intervention, treatment and support.

“These services have already proven to be effective and the expansion in care we have announced today will support our ambition to meet the rising demand for support to tackle young people’s ill health.

“And although we are in the throes of a pandemic, the NHS continues to offer face-to-face appointments and inpatient care for patients with eating disorders when needed, while providing the option of phone and video consultations and online support where appropriate.”

Amanda Risino, Chief Operating Officer for Health Innovation Manchester and Academic Health Science Network Early Intervention in Eating Disorder National Programme Chair, said:

“We are delighted to see 18 new services across England receive funding to implement this NHS service for young people aged 16-25 years. Early intervention in eating disorders is shown to lead to substantial improvements in clinical outcomes at a critical time of transition and development, and is highly acceptable to both patients and families.

“The AHSN Network, through our National Early Intervention in Eating Disorders Programme will be supporting implementation at these 18 new sites, in addition to our work with all Eating Disorder services across England interested in adopting an early intervention model of care for this age group.”

Ulrike Schmidt, Professor of Eating Disorders at King’s College London and Consultant Psychiatrist at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“Eating disorders are disabling and potentially deadly, and early treatment is essential.

“We are absolutely thrilled with this much needed investment and we hope that rolling out this NHS new service to 18 specialist eating disorder teams in England, will create the momentum needed to make early intervention a reality for all young people with eating disorders.”

“The new NHS service is highly recommended by patients and families and has helped many people including George and Sue.”

George moved to London when she was 21 and her eating disorder worsened as she moved to the capital on her own.

After persuasion from her family, George visited the GP who referred her to an eating disorders service delivering the NHS service. Within two weeks, she was meeting with a psychologist for a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) session.

George was with the service for 18 months and recognises the service not only supported her to manage her eating disorder but also with other challenges she had to face including having surgery, changing jobs, moving homes and acclimatising to the new city.

George said: “My treatment was completely tailored to me and my lifestyle. After my treatment was finished, I left the programme so optimistic and grateful for everything they had given me.”

The service has also helped Sue support her 18-year-old daughter who was the first person outside of London to use it in her local eating disorder programme.

Sue says her daughter was a bit apprehensive at first, but she built a genuine bond with her psychotherapist. Sue witnessed how the service caused a positive change to her daughter’s approach to food and exercise. From the dedication from her support worker to the involvement of a dietitian, Sue watched her daughter’s life and eating disorder improve.

She said: “I totally trusted the professionals involved in my daughter’s care and that’s what helped me help her. Without any question this NHS service should be seen as the gold standard of eating disorders care.”

“Eating disorders are disabling and potentially deadly, and early treatment is essential.”
Ulrike Schmidt, Professor of Eating Disorders at King's College London and Consultant Psychiatrist at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.

The new and expanding community-based mental health care will provide treatment and support for 370,000 adults, including those with eating disorders as part of the NHS Long Term Plan, and for anyone experiencing poor mental health, the NHS message remains the same: please help us help you, and come forward for the care you need.

The Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) is supporting the national adoption of evidenced based models including the NHS FREED expansion for the early identification of eating disorders in people aged 16 – 25.

A 2015 National Institute for Health and Care Excellence report estimated that between 600,000 and 725,000 people in the United Kingdom have one or more eating disorders.

Find out more about FREED

Find out more about FREED by clicking on the button below.

Explore more

We're here to help

Have any questions regarding this project? Email the HIN National Programme Manager for Early Intervention Eating Disorders on the button below.

Get in touch

Joint pain programme ESCAPE-pain and young people’s Type 1 diabetes initiative win awards

Trainer helps woman exercise

A national programme to tackle chronic joint pain and a local initiative supporting young people with Type 1 Diabetes have won at the prestigious Health Service Journal Value Awards.

Chronic joint pain programme ESCAPE-pain and the Youth Empowerment Service (YES) that supports 14-19 year olds with Type 1 diabetes, have won prizes at the Health Service Journal Value Awards.

ESCAPE-pain won the MSK Care Initiative of the Year. Since being on the programme , Ann, 68, is no longer in constant pain. She said: “Osteoarthritis was really impacting on my daily life as I had to ask for help to do everyday tasks around the home. My life has significantly changed since I completed the course and I’ve continued to do the exercises and now I no longer have any pain and I live a very active life.”

ESCAPE-pain (Enabling Self-management and Coping with Arthritic Pain using Exercise) is a national programme offering face-to-face and online exercises to help people suffering from chronic joint pain. Driven by the NHS’s Health Innovation Network, in south London, and backed by Sport England and in association with Versus Arthritis, roll-out of the programme has been supported by the national Academic Health Science Network. Prior to Covid-19, the programme was running in 295 sites and has helped 19,300 participants since it started.

ESCAPE-pain programme originator Professor Mike Hurley said:

“The judges were clearly impressed with the general ethos of the programme about self-management, its effectiveness and benefits that it brings to individuals and the healthcare system as a whole. We hope the award gives a boost to ESCAPE-pain that we believe can make a major contribution to the post-Covid-19 NHS ‘reset’.

Guy’s and St Thomas’ Youth Empowerment Skills (YES) programme, which is supported by the HIN, runs vital programmes for 14-19 years-olds with Type 1 Diabetes. It won the HSJ Diabetes Care Initiative of the Year.

YES programme Lead Dr Dulmini Kariyawasam, consultant at Guy’s and St.Thomas’ Foundation Trust , said:

“We are absolutely delighted to have been named as the winners in the Diabetes Care Initiative of the Year 2020! The positive impact of this award will help to create a long-lasting legacy and bolster our efforts to expand the YES programme across London giving every young person living with Type 1 diabetes in London access to the programme.”

“The HIN seeks to speed up the spread and adoption of evidence-based innovation in health and care so both these award-winning projects highlight the value of our work to improve lives. A huge well done to both teams. ”Health Innovation Network Chief Executive Zoe Lelliott

The Health Innovation Network’s Diabetes team Project Manager, Ellen Pirie, said:

“Young people suffering with Type 1 Diabetes face many challenges and the YES programme offers them practical support on issues such as food, sexual health and handling a diabetic seizure. There are also opportunities to go on social outings and try out new skills such as driving and rock-climbing and it’s this peer support network building that I know participants really benefit from.”

We're here to help

Get more info about the award winning YES and ESCAPE pain projects.

Learn about our projects

37 NHS staff leading digital transformation projects to be supported by DigitalHealth.London’s Digital Pioneer Fellowship

37 change makers who are employed by NHS organisations and are leading digital transformation projects in London and the South East will join the 2020/21 Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme.

Today, DigitalHealth.London announces the 37 NHS staff who have been successful in gaining a place on the third Digital Pioneer Fellowship. The programme supports change makers employed by NHS organisations in London and the South East to design and lead transformation projects underpinned by digital innovation. As the NHS continues to respond to and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, digital innovation remains vital to the health and social sector.

The 2020/21 cohort of Fellows come from organisations spanning London and the South East, and represent a diverse range of roles, departments and levels within the NHS. Eighteen are administrative staff, eight are Allied Health Professionals, six are medical professionals and five are nurses. Thirty percent of the cohort identify as BAME which is a relatively high proportion when comparing to the latest overall NHS workforce statistics which show that for NHS staff whose ethnicity was known, 79.2 percent were White (including White ethnic minorities), and 20.7 percent were from all other ethnic groups.

The 37 Fellows will be part of an action focused learning community focussed on accelerating the pace of digital transformation within their respective NHS organisations. Over the 12-month programme, the Fellows will have access to workshops, resources and events throughout the year to share challenges and experience, learn from experts and collaborate to co-design solutions.

Further information

Find the full list of this year’s Digital Pioneer Fellows here.

Browse their profiles

New funding opportunities October

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding

UKRI open call for research and innovation ideas to address Covid-19. Deadline: Open
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will support excellent proposals of up to 18 months duration which meet at least one of the following: a) New research or innovation with a clear impact pathway that has the potential (within the period of the award) to deliver a significant contribution to the understanding of, and response to, the Covid-19 pandemic and its impacts. b) Supports the manufacture and/or wide scale adoption of an intervention with significant potential. c) Gathers critical data and resources quickly for future research use.

National Institute for Health Research: Travel and subsistence funding to support LMIC engagement during the Covid-19 outbreak. Deadline: 31 December 2020
The awards will provide travel and subsistence funding to appropriately qualified public health professionals, clinicians and academics who wish to offer science and technical advice to support the immediate response to Covid-19 in low and middle-income countries. The awards are open to applicants who have a substantive position at a UK higher education institution or research organisation.

Fast Funding for Covid-19 Science. Deadline: 31 December 2020.
A new venture fund is offering grants of $10,000 to $500,000 to coronavirus researchers, and every grant decision will be made in less than 48 hours.

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses.  Deadline: Open
The Chancellor of the Exchequer today announced he is to establish a new Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment. The scheme will deliver an initial commitment of £250m of new government funding which will be unlocked by private investment on a match funded basis. The government scheme, which will be developed in partnership with the British Business Bank with the intention of launching for applications in May, will initially be open until the end of September. Over the coming weeks the Bank will work with government on the details on how the Future Fund will operate and how to apply for the scheme.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses
– for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other Featured Funding:

NHS Innovation Accelerator. Deadline: 16 October 2020
NIA are now recruiting for individuals representing high impact, evidence-based innovations that address one or more of this year’s themes: NHS response to Covid-19, mental health and supporting the NHS workforce.

SBRI Competition – Next generation home vision testing. Deadline: 18 November 2020.
Organisations can apply for a share of £100,000 inclusive of VAT, to develop remotely deployed vision testing.

The Health Foundation – Adopting Innovation. EOI open 7 October 2020
A new programme to build knowledge, skills and confidence within NHS providers to successfully adopt and adapt innovations.  The Adopting Innovation programme will provide funding for four innovation hubs across the UK with up to £475,000 each for two and a half years.

Other Funding Opportunities:

Innovate UK:

Biomedical Catalyst 2020: round 1, early and late stage awards. Deadline: 7 October 2020
UK registered SMEs can apply for a share of up to £30 million to develop a product or process that is an innovative solution to a health and care challenge.

EUREKA GlobalStars Singapore CRD – Round 2. Deadline: 15 October 2020
Open call: UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £1 million to develop innovative proposals with Singapore and other EUREKA participating members.

Smart Grant: August 2020. Deadline: 25 November 2020
Opportunity for UK registered organisations to apply for a share of up to £25 million from Innovate UK to deliver disruptive R&D innovations that can significantly impact the UK economy.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA): 

Open Competition: rolling deadline.
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.

More information on all DSTL – DASA funding opportunities

National Institute for Health Research (NIHR): 

Click here to find out many more funding opportunities with an emphasis on research.

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC): Research Grants. Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

Medical Research Council (MRC)
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

Click here for more MRC funding opportunities

TRUSTS AND CHARITIES:

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click here to access their database

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans:

The British Business Bank: Deadline: Open.
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds.
Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme. 

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: Open.
Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from 3-36 months. Interest rates range from 5% – 10%, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund. Deadline: Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.  

International:

The Global Challenges Research Fund.
The Newton Fund.
European Funding.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

News:

NIHR i4i Product Development Awards Call 21 will open on 20 October 2020. 
i4i Product Development Awards (PDA) support innovations at any stage of the translational research and development pathway, including the clinical development of laboratory-validated technologies or interventions.

Healthy ageing: investor partnership programme, round 2. Deadline: 4 November 2020
Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, is inviting investors to partner with us for this healthy ageing investor partnership programme. Together we will align Innovate UK’s grant funding of relevant R&D projects alongside your investment in UK micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) concerned with developing products, services or business models, which address one or more of the 7 themes of healthy ageing.

Q Exchange, will this year focus on one theme: embedding positive changes emerging through new collaborations or partnerships during Covid-19. They will offer 20 awards, of up to £30k each, to support Q members to develop and embed promising and positive changes. Application open from 1 September 2020.

KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up

Safer care during Covid-19

A rapid-learning report on the role of Patient Safety Collaboratives (PSCs) during the pandemic has been published by the AHSN Network. PSCs are just one part of the health and care system which responded quickly to the immediate Covid-19 crisis in March. They reprioritised their day-to-day work and took on new programmes with speed, such as promoting safer tracheostomy care.

PSCs are funded and nationally coordinated by NHS England and NHS Improvement, and hosted locally by the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) including the Health Innovation Network in south London. They make a significant contribution to the NHS Patient Safety Strategy, by supporting the delivery of the National Patient Safety Improvement Programmes and the AHSNs’ focus on accelerating innovation.

The report has been published as part of the NHS Reset campaign and gives examples of how PSCs refocused their work ‘almost overnight’ to respond to the pandemic. It illustrates some of the creative ways AHSNs supported their local systems and how this experience will be built into future patient safety programmes including our own #OnlyHuman campaign. This work encourages front-line health and care staff to prioritise their physical health and emotional wellbeing needs, which are likely to have been neglected due to the impact of Covid-19.

You can read the report at www.ahsnnetwork.com/patient-safety-covid19-report

 

 

We're here to help

Learn more about our current Patient Safety and Patient Experience work within south London.

See Patient Safety projects

NHS Innovation Accelerator – Call for Applicants for the 20/21 cohort

Applications for the NHS Innovation Accelerator are now open.

The NHS Innovation Accelerator (NIA) – an NHS England initiative supported by England’s 15 Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) and hosted at UCLPartners – has launched its call for applications representing high impact, evidence-based innovations.

The call is open to local, national and international healthcare innovations supported by passionate individuals from any background, including SMEs, clinicians, charity/third sector and academics.

In alignment with the current NHS priorities of Covid-19 Reset and Recovery, innovations put forward this year must address at least one of the following themes:

  • NHS response to COVID-19;
  • mental health; and
  • supporting the workforce.

The application period is open until 16 October 2020 at midnight.

For further information, contact the NHS Innovation Accelerator.

 

Interested in applying?

Visit the NIA website to learn more about the application criteria and process, find dates for informational webinars, and access the online application portal.

Apply now

New funding opportunities for members September

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding

Global Effort on Covid-19 (GECO) Health Research. Deadline: 28 September 2020
Global Effort on Covid-19 (GECO) Health Research is a new cross UK government funding call aiming to support applied health research that will address Covid-19 knowledge gaps. The focus is on understanding the pandemic and mitigating its health impacts in low and middle-income countries (LMIC). The call prioritises epidemiology, clinical management, infection control and health system responses.

UKRI open call for research and innovation ideas to address Covid-19. There is no closing date
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will support excellent proposals of up to 18 months duration which meet at least one of the following: a) New research or innovation with a clear impact pathway that has the potential (within the period of the award) to deliver a significant contribution to the understanding of, and response to, the Covid-19 pandemic and its impacts. b) Supports the manufacture and/or wide scale adoption of an intervention with significant potential. c) Gathers critical data and resources quickly for future research use.

National Institute for Health Research: Travel and subsistence funding to support LMIC engagement during the Covid-19 outbreak. Deadline 31 December 2020
The awards will provide travel and subsistence funding to appropriately qualified public health professionals, clinicians and academics who wish to offer science and technical advice to support the immediate response to Covid-19 in low and middle-income countries. The awards are open to applicants who have a substantive position at a UK higher education institution or research organisation.

Fast Funding for Covid-19 Science. Deadline: 31 December 2020.
A new venture fund is offering grants of $10,000 to $500,000 to coronavirus researchers, and every grant decision will be made in less than 48 hours.

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses 
The Chancellor of the Exchequer today announced he is to establish a new Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment. The scheme will deliver an initial commitment of £250m of new government funding which will be unlocked by private investment on a match-funded basis. The government scheme, which will be developed in partnership with the British Business Bank with the intention of launching for applications in May, will initially be open until the end of September. Over the coming weeks, the Bank will work with the government on the details on how the Future Fund will operate and how to apply for the scheme.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently, there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses 
– for the latest information on UK Govt support available.

Other Featured Funding

i4i Connect call. Deadline: 16 September 2020
The NIHR Invention for Innovation (i4i) Programme is delighted to launch its fourth round of i4i Connect Call – aimed at small and medium-sized med-tech enterprises (SMEs) in need of a funding boost to reach their next stage in the development pathway and accelerate the development of promising medical technologies.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: August 2020. Deadline: 25 November 2020
Opportunity for UK registered organisations to apply for a share of up to £25 million from Innovate UK to deliver disruptive R&D innovations that can significantly impact the UK economy.

Other Funding Opportunities

INNOVATE UK:

EUREKA GlobalStars Japan. Deadline: 10 September 2020
Open call (although pharmaceutical projects not in scope): UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £1 million to develop innovative proposals with Japan and other EUREKA participating members.

Using digital technology to support psychological therapies (SBRI). Deadline: 16 September 2020.
Organisations can apply for a share of up to £345,000 (including VAT) to develop new solutions using digital technology to provide psychological support.

Designing sustainable plastic solutions. Deadline: 16 September 2020
Competition to win funding for early-stage, human-centred design projects to reduce plastics’ harm to the environment, increase productivity and grow the UK economy.

Biomedical Catalyst 2020: round 1, early and late stage awards. Deadline: 7 October 2020
UK registered SMEs can apply for a share of up to £30 million to develop a product or process that is an innovative solution to a health and care challenge.

EUREKA GlobalStars Singapore CRD – Round 2. Deadline: 15 October 2020
Open call: UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £1 million to develop innovative proposals with Singapore and other EUREKA participating members.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities

Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) 

Open Competition: rolling deadline.
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition.

More information on all DSTL – DASA funding opportunities

National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) 

NIHR Artificial Intelligence for Multiple LTC (AIM) (Finalised). Deadline: 29 September 2020
The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) invites proposals to undertake programmes of research to spearhead the use of artificial intelligence (AI) methods to develop insights for the identification and subsequent prevention of multiple long-term conditions (multimorbidity) or MLTC-M

Find more funding opportunities with an emphasis on research.

ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (ESRC): Research Grants. Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development.

ENGINEERING AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (EPSRC):
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities.

MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (MRC)
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

Click here for more MRC funding opportunities

Trust and Charities

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. Click to access their database.

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans 

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK: Deadline: Open.
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds.
Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme. 

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: open.
Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from 3-36 months. Interest rates range from 5% – 10%, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector.

HSBC Loan Fund. Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.  

International 

The Global Challenges Research Fund.
The Newton Fund.
European Funding.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline

News

Deliver safer and better care for people in Scotland with diabetes, phase 1 (SBRI competition)
NHS Scotland is investing up to £300,000 including VAT, in innovative solutions in 3 challenge areas as follows:

  • Using artificial intelligence and machine learning to help develop prediction algorithms and risk stratification for diabetes foot ulceration, amputations and mortality.
  • Improving the clinical care of patients with a pre-existing diagnosis of diabetes when admitted to hospital by developing a real-time decision support tool and alert mechanism. The tool must improve triage, prevent medication errors, identify emergencies and streamline the diabetes care pathway.
  • Improving the identification (case finding) of people at risk of osteoporosis and fracture, including those with diabetes.

Closing date for applications: 23 September 2020. For more details of the funding

Q Exchange, will this year focus on one theme: embedding positive changes emerging through new collaborations or partnerships during Covid-19We will offer 20 awards, of up to £30k each, to support Q members to develop and embed promising and positive changes. Application open from 1 September 2020.
KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up 

Worldwide experts to explore how digital health evidence generation is transforming healthcare

Experts in their field from around the world are to review the topic Generating Evidence for Digital Health in a series of upcoming webinars. This was made possible through an innovative collaboration between University College London, the Health Innovation Network, the DigitalHealth.London Generator and MedCity.

The series will span a wide range of issues around the topic with special reference to the digital health transformation brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Renowned across the world for their work in the field, the chairs and guest speakers include; internationally recognised academic Professor Trish Greenhalgh, University Oxford; the Co-founder and Executive Director of the Digital Medicine Society and former Olympian and World Championship silver medallist Jen Goldsack; and senior clinical scientist Professor Dame Til Wykes who has carried out research in digital health with service users and has developed her own digital health software for people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia.

The webinars are all free to join and are targeted at an international audience of digital health developers, researchers, students, clinicians and NHS managers and commissioners. Audience members can join discussions with experts on key questions such as, ‘Can we move beyond regulation stifling innovation?’, ‘What can different academic disciplines bring to evaluating digital health?’ and ‘Can I trust digital mental health to work for me?’.

Dr Henry Potts, University College London and Public Health England, said: “Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, there was a momentum building around the importance of generating evidence for digital health. Now as hundreds of digital services and products have been introduced into health and care sectors, the need to understand their impact and use digital technology for lasting change requires real collaboration. We’re delighted so many digital health leaders have been enthused by this webinar series and I am very much looking forward to discussions and information exchanges.”

Dr Jean Ledger, Research Fellow, Department of Applied Health Research, University College London, said: “This webinar series is aimed at sharing perspectives and expertise with the hope of starting a collaborative movement around improving evidence generation in digital health. We hope these discussions raise interesting questions and ideas about how to improve evidence in this rapidly evolving field. There is great potential for digital health to improve health and social care for patients and NHS staff, but we need to get it right and understand what works well for end users, and under what conditions. Generating and applying evidence appropriately is key to that.”

“I would encourage anyone with an interest in digital innovation in health care – whether innovators, clinicians looking to adopt a digital solution or academics hoping to evaluate a digital health tool – to join these fantastic webinars.”Anna King, Commercial Director, Health Innovation Network

Professor Paul Wallace, Clinical Director for Digital at the Health Innovation Network and National Institute for Health Research London Clinical Research Networks, said: “The DigitalHealth.London Generator is committed to promoting the generation of evidence to support the digital transformation of our health and care services and we are delighted to be a founding partner of this exciting webinar series. If you are interested in any aspect of digital health, please join us this unique programme to hear from and interact with some of the most influential pioneers in the digital health space.”

Neelam Patel, CEO, MedCity said: “We are currently at a pivotal moment in digital health where its future will be decided by the success of collaborations between industry, the NHS and academia. MedCity is proud to be a partner in this top-level webinar series and I for one am very much looking forward to engaging debates and discussions on this important topic.”

Anna King, Commercial Director, the Health Innovation Network, said: “We have been inspired by high-profile thought leaders in digital health evidence generation who are sharing their experience and expertise in this webinar series. I would encourage anyone with an interest in digital innovation in health care – whether innovators, clinicians looking to adopt a digital solution or academics hoping to evaluate a digital health tool – to join these fantastic webinars.”

Each webinar will last for approximately one hour and will include presentations and a moderated question and answer session. The webinars will be streamed live, and recordings will subsequently be made available online.

The programme has been made possible by a grant from the UCL Knowledge and Information Exchange and all sessions will be free of charge.

Further information

Join the online discussion on Twitter using the hashtag: #EvaluateDigiHealth.

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For more information and to register visit the Digital Health.London website.

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DigitalHealth.London Digital Pioneer Fellowship opens for applications

Call out to NHS staff who are pioneering digital innovations within their organisations

Did you know

  • Over 80 per cent of the Fellows surveyed said they had gained specific technical skills.
  • So far 60 innovators employed by NHS organisations have benefited from the Digital Pioneer Fellowship.
  • All Fellows surveyed were confident that being part of the Fellowship was of benefit to their career.

Digital innovations have provided vital support and capacity to the NHS over the last few months and will continue to do so as the impact of Covid-19 continues, and the focus turns to resuming services. Today, DigitalHealth.London opens applications to its Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme, supporting change makers employed by NHS organisations in London to design and lead transformation projects underpinned by digital innovation. This year the Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme is funded through sponsorship from Boehringer Ingelheim Ltd (BI)* – the programme content and delivery is controlled by DigitalHealth.London.

Now in its third consecutive year, the 12-month programme provides up to 30 Fellows with the opportunity to be part of an action focused learning community focussed on accelerating the pace of digital transformation within their respective NHS organisations. The individuals taking part have access to workshops, resources and events throughout the year to share challenges and experience, learn from experts and collaborate to co-design solutions.

They will hear from and be given the opportunity to ask questions of leading sector experts during taught modules on subjects ranging from change management and business case development to agile delivery and service improvement. Fellows will also be able to choose a mentor and be grouped into action learning sets with other Fellows working in similar environments on digital transformation projects.

“I am extremely proud of the individuals we have supported previously through our Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme for the contributions they have made to bringing digital innovation into London’s NHS, and am very pleased today to announce the opening of applications for the next cohort of pioneers.”Sara Nelson, Programme Lead, Digital Pioneer Fellowship

In the first year of the programme over 80 per cent of the Fellows surveyed cited positive gain, saying that they gained specific technical skills and/or had met an individual challenge thanks to the Fellowship. All Fellows surveyed were confident that being part of the Fellowship was of benefit to their career.**

Sara Nelson, Programme Lead, Digital Pioneer Fellowship, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has been one of the biggest challenges the NHS has faced and I have no doubt that the staff’s quick adaptation and uptake of digital innovations has been vital in enabling key services and care to continue over this period. As a nurse with over 25 years of service to the NHS, I appreciate how challenging digital transformation in the NHS can be if staff aren’t given the support, advice and time to develop professional skills that they need. I am extremely proud of the individuals we have supported previously through our Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme for the contributions they have made to bringing digital innovation into London’s NHS, and am very pleased today to announce the opening of applications for the next cohort of pioneers.”

Tara Donnelly, Chief Digital Officer at NHSX, said: “We need to support the clinicians, service leads, managers and operational staff in our NHS who are at the heart of digital healthcare delivery with the tools they need to drive change in their organisations.

“The DigitalHealth.London Digital Pioneer Fellowship provides them with these tools and I am thrilled it is opening for applications once again and look forward to witnessing the impact this next cohort of change makers have on London’s NHS.”

Nicola Reynolds, Principal Clinical Psychologist at Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust, recently appointed Deputy Clinical Director for CYPMH at Health Innovation Network and 2019 Digital Pioneer Fellowship alumnus, said: “I wanted to develop my skills and knowledge in order to help drive the development and adoption of digital working within my organisation, so I applied to the Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme. Having been successful in gaining a place, I was encouraged to think more strategically, and by doing so, I expanded the remit of my digital role. I recently contributed to a bid for funding from NHSX, we were successful in securing £200,000 to contribute to the development of a digital care pathway for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. I found the Fellowship experience invaluable, both the formal teaching and the Action Learning Set groups. I was able to use the insights I gained from the Change Management session to arrange and deliver on an alignment conversation with the senior team. It had a significant impact on the project and led to my solution becoming incorporated into the Trust wide solution.”

Uday Bose, Country Managing Director UK & Ireland at Boehringer Ingelheim, said: “We are delighted to be supporting the Digital Pioneer Fellowship and NHS staff with a learning community and access to leading experts and mentors.  Digital technology is a critical driver in accelerating our healthcare system, whether it’s progress in scientific innovation, sustainable healthcare or better ways to connect Health Care Professionals with their colleagues and patients. As part of our ongoing commitment to improving health, digital innovation is at the heart of delivering better value and care to patients. We are excited to champion NHS change makers who see the potential and benefit of digital transformation as they go about their day to day roles.”

Further information

For more information about the Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme, join a discussion with the Programme Lead and some of the Fellows who have been supported by the programme on the Digital Pioneer Fellowship 101 Webinar at 11:30am Wednesday 12 August on Zoom.

Signup

We're here to help

You can read more information about the Digital Pioneer Fellowship programme and access the online application on the DigitalHealth.London website.

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New funding opportunities for members

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding

The Sustainable Innovation Fund: SBRI phase 1. Deadline: 5 August 2020.
Organisations can apply for a share of up to £10 million, including VAT, to help UK businesses and the public sector recover from Covid-19 in a sustainable manner. For more information click here. 

National Institute for Health Research (NIHR): Local Authority Research System Call. Deadline: 6 August 2020
The NIHR is looking to explore how it can strengthen its support to research in the local government environment. The NIHR recognises that innovation is happening in some local authorities and wants to explore how current, or new, systems could be developed, at a local level, to support sustainable and influential research activity. For more information click here.

Global Effort on Covid-19 (GECO) Health Research. Deadline: 28 September 2020
This is a new cross UK government funding call aiming to support applied health research that will address Covid-19 knowledge gaps. The focus is on understanding the pandemic and mitigating its health impacts in low and middle-income countries (LMIC). The call prioritises epidemiology, clinical management, infection control and health system responses. For more information click here.

UKRI open call for research and innovation ideas to address Covid-19. There is no closing date
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will support excellent proposals of up to 18 months duration which meet at least one of the following: a) New research or innovation with a clear impact pathway that has the potential (within the period of the award) to deliver a significant contribution to the understanding of, and response to, the Covid-19 pandemic and its impacts. b) Supports the manufacture and/or wide scale adoption of an intervention with significant potential. c) Gathers critical data and resources quickly for future research use. For more information click here.

NIHR: Travel and subsistence funding to support LMIC engagement during the Covid-19 outbreak. Deadline 31 December 2020
The awards will provide travel and subsistence funding to appropriately qualified public health professionals, clinicians and academics who wish to offer science and technical advice to support the immediate response to Covid-19 in low and middle-income countries. The awards are open to applicants who have a substantive position at a UK higher education institution or research organisation. For more information click here.

Fast Funding for Covid-19 Science. Deadline: 31 December 2020
A new venture fund is offering grants of $10,000 to $500,000 to coronavirus researchers, and every grant decision will be made in less than 48 hours. For more information click here. 

New Future Fund to Support Innovative UK Businesses 
The Chancellor of the Exchequer today announced he is to establish a new Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment. The scheme will deliver an initial commitment of £250m of new government funding, which will be unlocked by private investment on a match funded basis. The government scheme, which will be developed in partnership with the British Business Bank with the intention of launching for applications in May, will initially be open until the end of September. Over the coming weeks the Bank will work with government on the details on how the Future Fund will operate and how to apply for the scheme. For more information click here. 

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19. For more information click here.

Covid-19 – For other International Funding (and more) read Knowledge Transfer Network round-up. For more information click here..
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses 
– for the latest information on UK Government support available click here  

Other Featured Funding

SBRI Healthcare competition: Urgent and Emergency Care. Deadline: 27 August 2020
This competition seeks to address two primary issues, taking into account the systemic complexity and recognising some of the key demographic differences. So the request is for solutions that will either reduce demand on these services or reduce the length of stay in the Emergency Department. For more information click here.

NIHR Artificial Intelligence for Multiple LTC (AIM) (Finalised). Deadline: 29 September 2020
The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) invites proposals to undertake programmes of research to spearhead the use of artificial intelligence (AI) methods to develop insights for the identification and subsequent prevention of multiple long-term conditions (multimorbidity) or MLTC-MFor more information click here.

Biomedical Catalyst 2020: round 1, early and late stage awards. Deadline: 7 October 2020
UK registered SMEs can apply for a share of up to £30 million to develop a product or process that is an innovative solution to a health and care challenge. For more information click here.

Using digital technology to support psychological therapies (SBRI). Deadline: 16 September 2020
Organisations can apply for a share of up to £345,000 (including VAT) to develop new solutions using digital technology to provide psychological support. For more information click here.

Other Funding Opportunities: 

EUREKA: healthy ageing. Deadline: 5 August 2020
UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £2 million to develop digital health technologies in partnership with organisations from EUREKA countries. For more information click here. 

Young Innovators Awards 2020/21. Deadline: 2 September 2020
Young people can apply for an award to make their business idea a reality. The Award includes a £5,000 grant, tailored business support and a living allowance. For more information click here.

EUREKA GlobalStars Japan. Deadline: 10 September 2020
Open call (although pharmaceutical projects not in scope): UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £1 million to develop innovative proposals with Japan and other EUREKA participating members. For more information click here.

Designing sustainable plastic solutions. Deadline: 16 September 2020
Competition to win funding for early-stage, human-centred design projects to reduce plastics’ harm to the environment, increase productivity and grow the UK economy. For more information click here.

EUREKA GlobalStars Singapore CRD – Round 2. Deadline: 15 October 2020
Open call: UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £1 million to develop innovative proposals with Singapore and other EUREKA participating members. For more information click here.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities click here.

Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA): Behavioural Analytics Phase 2. Deadline: 13 August 2020
This Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) competition is seeking proposals that can help UK Defence and Security to develop capability in ‘Behavioural Analytics’. For more information click here.

Open Competition: rolling deadline.
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition. Click here to find out more.

For more information on all DSTL – DASA funding opportunities click here. 

NIHR:
There are many funding opportunities with an emphasis on research. Click here to find our more click here. 

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC): Research Grants. Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development. Click here to find out more.

Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities click here.

Medical Research Council (MRC)
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

For MRC funding opportunities click here.

Trust and Charities

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities formed the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. To access their database click here.

Other UK Government, Seed Funds and Loans: 

The British Business Bank: Deadline: Open
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance. For more information click here.

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) funding. General ‘collection’ of news and funds
Information about SBRI for businesses and public sector organisations that might want to use the scheme. For more information click here.

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base. For more information click here.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: open.
Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from 3-36 months. Interest rates range from 5% – 10%, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector. For more information click here.

HSBC Loan Fund. Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply. For more information click here. 

International 

The Global Challenges Research Fund. Click here to find out more.
The Newton Fund. Click here to find out more.
European Funding. Click here to find out more.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program Click here to find out more. 

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline click here

News

Smart Grant: 

Innovate UK’s SMART Grant will launch its next round in August 2020.

Healthy Ageing Challenge – Catalyst Awards:
UKRI is working with the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) in the USA as a Global Collaborator in their Healthy Longevity Grand Challenge. They will commission a set of Catalyst Awards to support early stage innovation and stimulate interest in global opportunities.

Collaborative R&D Competition:
The aim of the Collaborative R&D competition is to focus on the high-potential early stage collaborative projects, which address key opportunities that would not otherwise be eligible for funding under the Trailblazer nor the Investment Accelerator programmes.

KTN: Latest Health and Life Sciences Funding Round-Up – for more information click here.  

AHSN Network stakeholder research – national findings

Did you know?

This independent report finds that the quality of HIN’s partnerships is a key strength. Find out more about what we do and how we partner with others across industry, health and care.

NHS England/Improvement and the Office for Life Sciences commissioned research to explore and evaluate the views of AHSN stakeholders. Savanta ComRes conducted this independent evaluation. With input from AHSNs and commissioners, they developed and ran an online survey and telephone interviews. Those taking part were stakeholders in health and social care, private and voluntary sectors, national and local governance bodies, research and academia, patient groups and the general public. Topics covered included familiarity with and perceptions of AHSNs, evaluations of AHSNs’ communications, services, support, work programmes and cross-regional working, and perceived opportunities and challenges for AHSNs in the future.

Key takeaways from the report:
1. Key strengths of Health Innovation Network cited across stakeholders are the quality of partnerships they develop and of the training courses they run.

2. However, there is a sense among some that HIN could be more visible by focusing resources on a smaller number of projects where they can make a significant impact.

3. Some stakeholders make suggestions for HIN around strengthening its ongoing communication with them, for instance by maintaining contact post-project or by targeting the most important individuals.

Download the Health Innovation Network AHSN regional report.

Download the national AHSN report.

“ They’re very motivated, very outcome-oriented and very good at providing connections and support to their local organisations and very focussed on the challenges of innovation and improvements in the NHS.”Industry stakeholder

Further information

Each AHSN is also publishing their individual regional reports. Find a list of England’s 15 AHSNs here. Explore the national AHSN Stakeholder Research findings.

See national findings

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Explore our projects and contact us to get involved

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HIN backs Londoners’ decisions over use of their data to save lives and improve care

OneLondon Citizen's Summit members discuss how their health and care data is used

Londoners have set out how they expect their health and care data to be used to improve care. A diverse mix of 100 Londoners strongly endorsed joined up data sharing by NHS and care services under clear conditions.

Commenting on the findings from the HIN-supported OneLondon Citizen’s Summit Public deliberation in the use of health and care data report, Denis Duignan, Head of Digital at Health Innovation Network, said:

“We welcome this report as for the first time it sets out how Londoner’s want their health and care data to be used. This is vital because patient confidentiality is such a delicate issue and sharing data between healthcare providers has huge benefits in directly caring for patients, and also for wider research, proactive and personalised care.

“This is compounded by the fact that the data captured and shared by the public through a plethora of digital tools and devices will soon provide additional information and capabilities to improve how we care for patients and ourselves as citizens.”

Read the story here and download the report here.

Watch the NHS’s video setting out the potential for data in health and care here.

“Sharing data between healthcare providers has such huge benefits in directly caring for patients, and also for wider research, proactive and personalised care. ”Denis Duignan, Head of Digital at Health Innovation Network

See more work by our Technology team

From reviews into online consultation across south west London, a market review of social prescribing platforms and digital transformation click on the button below.

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Londoners set out their expectations for appropriate use of their health and care data

OneLondon Citizen's Summit

Londoners have set out how they expect their health and care data to be used, as part of a London-wide Citizens’ Summit. There was strong endorsement for joining-up information held by the NHS and care services to improve care for individuals and for the population, as long as certain conditions are in place.

In receiving these detailed recommendations, local health and care leaders confirmed that these public expectations will be used to shape policy for London, ensuring that Londoners can have confidence in how their health and care data is used.

The OneLondon Citizens’ Summit was a large scale and in-depth public deliberation on uses of health and care data. It involved 100 Londoners in a four-day process of detailed discussion and debate. Participants reflected London’s diverse population, came from all 32 boroughs, and had a mix of attitudes towards data sharing. They were provided with technical information by experts and practitioners. The work was overseen by an independent advisory group.

This Citizens’ Summit is a new and innovative way to involve the public in policymaking. As a result, Londoners have had more opportunity than ever before to be informed about the issues and trade-offs, and to set out their expectations about the uses of their health and care information by the health and care system.

The Citizens’ Summit was commissioned by London’s five health and care partnerships via the OneLondon Local Health and Care Record Exemplar (LHCRE) programme, and delivered by Ipsos MORI and The King’s Fund. Through public deliberation, London is leading the way in understanding how citizens weigh-up the benefits and potential concerns of data use, to reach an informed set of public expectations that will now shape the development of policy across the capital.

How do Londoners expect their health and care data to be used?

Access and control in health and care data
At the end of the process, after four days of deliberation, there was almost unanimous agreement (97 per cent of those who attended on the day)* that all health and care organisations in London should join up identifiable data to support the provision of care to individuals. An expectation was set that health and care professionals would only have access to information relevant to their roles through a means of role-based access control. Strict conditions were set out by Summit participants, taking into account the level of urgency of a patient’s condition, safeguarding of information and accountability.

Use of de-personalised data for health and care planning and improvement
Participants recommended that de-personalised data must be used by relevant organisations to plan and improve services and demonstrably benefit the health of the population, with conditions set out to ensure security of data, transparency of access, and an individual’s choice to opt out of this use if they wish.

Use of de-personalised data for research and development
Conditions for using de-personalised data to support research and development included who should have access (including commercial organisations) and how they should be charged for this access, with a tiered pricing model being suggested. Participants also set conditions around how information should be safeguarded and accessed in a safe and secure setting, and how benefits – financial and otherwise – should be realised and distributed across the NHS.

Governance and oversight
There was a strong expectation set that citizens are involved in ongoing policy and decision-making around the uses of health and care data as part of a continuing diverse citizens’ advisory group, with a request for those in elected positions, for example, the London Assembly, to play an oversight and scrutiny role.

Consistency across London
After four days of deliberation, nearly all of the participants (98 per cent of those who attended on the day)* stated an expectation that all health and care organisations in London must join up de-personalised information, as part of a population dataset, to support proactive care, planning, improvement, research and development in line with the recommendations and conditions they set out.

What does this mean for London’s health and care system?

Data collected about a person’s health and care offers a range of benefits – from helping NHS and care staff to provide safe, quality care, to planning and improving services, to supporting research and discovery of new treatments. The public health emergency of the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted more than ever the need for a joined-up approach in using data, both now and into the future. This is an expectation shared by Londoners, and the recommendations formed by participants through the Citizens’ Summit provide a clear directive to the health and care system.

One participant involved in the Citizens’ Summit, said:

“I consider my healthcare information to be very personal and it’s important that it is discussed openly as to whether we want that to be shared, or the extent to which it’s shared. It’s very democratic to be part of this process. We can often feel, politically, quite impotent as individuals, so being able to feel like the opinions I’m expressing are going to be helping to shape policy… it’s really good to be a part of it.”

A second participant commented:

“Certain expectations that I had of the NHS and our data were completely blown out of the park. Connections I thought might be there – or hoped were there – weren’t. So it’s been very informative. I came in initially with the view that, ‘the data is mine, no one should have access to it’, so I’ve done a big flip. It’s been a journey because I’ve kept flipping to and fro.”

Dr Vin Diwakar, Regional Medical Director for the NHS in London, commented:

“Having listened to Londoners about how they expect their personal health information to be used, it is clear they want those treating patients to have access to all the health and care information for those individuals, to optimise care. They also strongly support using data for research and the clear benefit of improving the city’s health and social care. Privacy and other safeguards must be in place. We are grateful for the involvement of all those who took part and will continue to work closely with Londoners as we look to develop an agreed set of principles for how we safely and securely use Londoners’ data, based on their recommendations.”

London’s Chief Digital Officer, Theo Blackwell, said:

“There is huge potential to harness health and care data in a safe and secure way, in order to improve Londoners’ wellbeing while protecting their privacy. The Mayor and I are clear that Londoners must be at the heart of shaping how their data is used and by whom. The OneLondon Citizens’ Summit has empowered Londoners to make recommendations on this important issue, to ensure the system can develop policy in a trustworthy way.”

Recommendations and findings from the OneLondon Citizens’ Summit are detailed in a new report. Download Public deliberation in the use of health and care data here.

For more information visit One London website.

“Having listened to Londoners about how they expect their personal health information to be used, it is clear they want those treating patients to have access to all the health and care information for those individuals, to optimise care. “Dr Vin Diwakar, Regional Medical Director for the NHS in London

NHS Diabetes Advice Helpline for patients with insulin-treated diabetes

medCrowd partners with Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust to provide a new Diabetes Advice Helpline

New virtual service supports self-management for people living with insulin-treated diabetes during the Covid-19 pandemic.

DigitalHealth.London Accelerator alumni, medCrowd, have partnered with NHS England and Improvement, Diabetes UK, Novo Nordisk UK, and Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust to provide a new Diabetes Advice Helpline.

The new Diabetes Advice Helpline, supported in its early development stages by King’s Health Partners Diabetes, Obesity and Endocrinology and Health Innovation Network, offers clinical advice for people, putting them in touch with trained clinical advisors with expertise in diabetes. All the advisors are diabetes trained health professionals who are volunteering their time during the pandemic – some are retired and have returned to the NHS to support patients.

The service is available via the Diabetes UK’s support line on 0345 123 2399, Monday to Friday from 9am – 6pm, for adults living with type 1 and type 2 diabetes who use insulin to manage their condition.

For patients who, whether as a direct or indirect result of the coronavirus, have had their routine care disrupted, the helpline provides much needed clinical advice on topics such as: hyperglycaemia, hypoglycaemia, sick day rules and missed injections, which can all lead to serious complications if not managed appropriately.

“This helpline is a fantastic example of how rapid collaboration between NHS organisations and medCrowd has made it possible to provide much-needed support to patients during this challenging time.”Laura Semple, Health and Innovation Network Programme Director in Diabetes and Stroke Prevention

The new helpline is not intended to replace the routine care that patients receive – but if for any reason patients cannot get hold of their usual care team, then the helpline is there to provide advice. The helpline is not able to offer advice for pregnant or paediatric patients. These patients, and their parents or guardians, as appropriate, are advised to contact their own doctor or care team.

Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust continues to be a key partner in the project by providing clinical oversight and support.

Mark Brodigan, Programme Lead for NHS England, said:
“Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and our London regional team were instrumental in the inception and development of the programme. They continue to provide clinical, operational advice and support to the service. Without their help and support, we would not have been able to establish this service in such a short period of time. This is a good example of partnership working across the NHS, third and private sectors to establish a service that supports diabetic patients at this time of need.”

Kate Lillywhite, Programme Director of King’s Health Partners Diabetes, Obesity and Endocrinology, said:
“We’re delighted that NHS Diabetes Advice Helpline has launched and our Institute has played a key role in enabling it.”
“No doubt, this service will provide accessible and high-quality advice for people living with diabetes across the UK during the pandemic. None of it would not have been made possible without cross-organisation collaboration and the fantastic support from Health Innovation Network and medCrowd.”

“The experience of setting this service up opens up the possibility of new ways of working, beneficial to both patients and staff alike.”

Laura Semple, Health and Innovation Network Programme Director in Diabetes and Stroke Prevention, said:
“This helpline is a fantastic example of how rapid collaboration between NHS organisations and medCrowd has made it possible to provide much-needed support to patients during this challenging time. We will all be interested to learn from the experience of this advice line as we work with partners to shape the future of diabetes care.”

Sara Nelson, Programme Director DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, said:
“We are very proud that so many of our Accelerator programme companies are at the forefront of the Covid-19 response and are supporting the NHS and patients every day.”

“In this project, medCrowd is adapting its offer to meet people’s needs during the pandemic, giving hundreds of people access to the vital care and support they need.”

Dr Felix Jackson, Founder and Medical Director of medDigital and medCrowd, said:
“It is amazing to see this innovative service set up so quickly by the dedicated and talented team working together across the NHS, Health Innovation Network, medDigital and other key organisations. We were able to configure and roll out NHS Diabetes Advice in just a few weeks so people living with diabetes can get the help and advice they need during this uncertain time.”

Explore our work in diabetes here.

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Further Information

King’s Health Partners Diabetes, Obesity and Endocrinology is improving health and wellbeing for people living with diabetes and obesity across London and south east England.

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New funding opportunities for members

News

New funding opportunities for members

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Covid-19 Specific Funding

UKRI open call for research and innovation ideas to address Covid-19. There is no closing date
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will support excellent proposals of up to 18 months duration which meet at least one of the following: a) New research or innovation with a clear impact pathway that has the potential (within the period of the award) to deliver a significant contribution to the understanding of, and response to, the Covid-19 pandemic and its impacts. b) Supports the manufacture and/or wide scale adoption of an intervention with significant potential. c) Gathers critical data and resources quickly for future research use. For more information click here.

National Institute for Health Research: Travel and subsistence funding to support LMIC engagement during the Covid-19 outbreak. Deadline 31 December 2020
The awards will provide travel and subsistence funding to appropriately qualified public health professionals, clinicians and academics who wish to offer science and technical advice to support the immediate response to Covid-19 in low and middle-income countries. The awards are open to applicants who have a substantive position at a UK higher education institution or research organisation. For more information click here.

Fast Funding for Covid-19 Science. Deadline: 31 December 2020.
A new venture fund is offering grants of $10,000 to $500,000 to coronavirus researchers, and every grant decision will be made in less than 48 hours. For more information click here. 

Covid-19 Rapid Response Rolling Call. Deadline: 1 April 2021
Building on the initial calls of their Initiative, DHSC, through the NIHR, and UKRI are jointly launching a rolling call for proposals for rapid research into Covid-19. As this is a rolling call there is currently no fixed end date to the call, we are open to applications and will aim to review complete proposals within four weeks of submission. This is a researcher-led call: for UK-led academic, SME and wider industry research that will address a wide range of Covid-19 knowledge gaps/needs, and which will lead to a benefit in UK, potentially international, public health within 12 months. For more information click here.

New Future Fund To Support Innovative UK Businesses 
The Chancellor of the Exchequer today announced he is to establish a new Future Fund to support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment. The scheme will deliver an initial commitment of £250m of new government funding which will be unlocked by private investment on a match funded basis. The government scheme, which will be developed in partnership with the British Business Bank with the intention of launching for applications in May, will initially be open until the end of September. Over the coming weeks the Bank will work with government on the details on how the Future Fund will operate and how to apply for the scheme. For more information click here. 

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the Covid-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with Covid-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on Covid-19. For more information click here.

Covid-19 – Other International Funding (and more) read KTN round-up by click here.
Covid-19 – Support for Businesses 
– for the latest information on UK Govt support available click here

Other Featured Funding

Eureka: healthy ageing. Deadline: 5 August 2020
UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £2 million to develop digital health technologies in partnership with organisations from EUREKA countries. For more information click here. 

ISCF Healthy Ageing Social, Behavioural & Design Research Programme. Pre-announcement
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will be inviting applications to the ISCF Healthy Ageing Social Behavioural and Design Research Programme from May 2020. £9.5m (100% fEC) will be available to support world-leading research that makes a significant contribution to the lives of people as they age. For more information click here.

OTHER FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES:

INNOVATE UK:
Innovation Scholars secondments: biomedical sciences, strands 2-3. Deadline:1 July 2020.
UKRI invites applications for individuals from any discipline wishing to spend up to 36 months (full or part time) on secondment in the biomedical sciences sector. £5 million fund. For more information click here.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities click here.

DEFENCE AND SECURITY ACCELERATOR (DASA):

DASA: Biosensing across wide areas. Deadline: 1 June 2020
DASA is looking for solutions to detect and locate deposited hazardous biological agents rapidly in the field. Proposals will need to deliver a higher level of maturity than achieved in Phase 1. We expect the starting Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of the innovation to be TRL 3. By the end of the project, we expect the innovation to be sufficiently developed to achieve approximately TRL 4 – 5. £700k is available to fund Phase 2. For more information click here. 

Open Competition: rolling deadline.
The Open Call is one of the funding competition mechanisms DASA uses to find proposals that address challenges faced by government stakeholders. It gives bidders the opportunity to present their ideas to defence and security stakeholders at any time, without waiting for a relevant Themed Competition. Click here to find out more.

For more information on all DSTL – DASA funding opportunities click here. 

NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH RESEARCH (NIHR):

NIHR: I4I Product Development Award Round 20. Deadline: 3 June 2020.
The NIHR Invention for Innovation (i4i) programme will invite proposals to Call 20 of its researcher-led Product Development Awards (PDA). PDAs fund the development of disruptive early stage medical technologies that address existing or emerging healthcare needs. They support translational projects developing medical devices, active implantable devices and in vitro diagnostic devices. PDAs also support projects that use and develop techniques or technologies from other industry sectors that could have a potential impact if applied in a healthcare setting. For more information click here. 

NIHR: I4I Challenge Awards on Real World Implementation (RWI). Deadline: 5 June 2020.
The RWI Challenge Award will fund investigations of medtech innovations in healthcare settings. The aim is to shorten the evidence gap between the safety/efficacy typical of a newly or nearly CE marked technology and what is required for decisions by commissioners and regulators. At the same time, this will de-risk the product for follow-on investment. For more information click here.

There are many funding opportunities with an emphasis on research. Click here to find our more click here. 

ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (ESRC): Research Grants. Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development. Click here to find out more.

ENGINEERING AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (EPSRC):
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities click here.

MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (MRC)
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

For MRC funding opportunities click here.

TRUSTS AND CHARITIES:

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. To access their database click here.

OTHER UK GOVERNMENT, SEED FUNDS AND LOANS:

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK: Deadline: Open.
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance. For more information click here.

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base. For more information click here.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: open.
Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from 3-36 months. Interest rates range from 5% – 10%, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector. For more information click here.

HSBC Loan Fund. Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply. For more information click here. 

INTERNATIONAL:

The Global Challenges Research Fund. Click here to find out more.
The Newton Fund. Click here to find out more.
European Funding. Click here to find out more.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program Click here to find out more. 

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline click here

NEWS:

Find out how to get your study nationally supported or funded as high priority Covid-19 Urgent Public Health Research
Covid-19 Urgent Public Health Research is being prioritised to gather the necessary clinical and epidemiological evidence that will inform national policy and enable new diagnostic tests, treatments and vaccines to be developed and tested for Covid-19. Government support is available to prioritise, coordinate and deliver these studies, regardless of sponsorship and funding source. This support includes expedited identification of sites to ensure appropriate geographical distribution of Urgent Public Health Research to maximise recruitment and minimise over-commitment of resource. Find out more by clicking here.

Innovate UK launches new three-year programme for Young Innovators 

New findings from Innovate UK show that half of young people in the UK think their age is a barrier to business success. The programme will support up to 100 young people, with £5K funding, one-to-one coaching and an allowance to cover living costs. The national Young Innovators Awards will go to 18-30 year olds with a creative and ground-breaking business idea. For more information click here.

Also coming soon:
Healthy Ageing Challenge
Catalyst Awards:
UKRI is working with the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) in the USA as a Global Collaborator in their Healthy Longevity Grand Challenge. They will commission a set of Catalyst Awards to support early stage innovation and stimulate interest in global opportunities.

Collaborative R&D Competition:
The aim of the Collaborative R&D competition is to focus on the high-potential early stage collaborative projects, which address key opportunities that would not otherwise be eligible for funding under the Trailblazer nor the Investment Accelerator programmes.

Patient safety and experience: our response to Covid-19

Patient safety and experience: our response to COVID-19

Our Patient Safety and Experience, Healthy Ageing and Digital Transformation Teams have been working in partnership to support our local health and care system response to Covid-19.  Working as part of the NHS National Patient Safety Improvement Programmes, our work over the next six months will focus on the following areas to contribute to the NHS response to Covid-19.

Deterioration

Failure to recognise or act on signs of deterioration can result in missed opportunities to provide necessary care and give patients the best possible chance of survival (Patient Safety Alerts 2016, 2018). This area therefore continues to be a major patient safety priority for the NHS during the Covid-19 outbreak. A good system of managing deterioration includes processes and solutions that enable:

  • Early detection of physical deterioration. This includes a physiology assessment and early warning tools such as soft signs and the NEWS2 score. A growing number of digital solutions to support these processes are also available.
  • An understanding of what is “normal” for a resident.
  • Staff knowing what to do next if a person’s health deteriorates. Agreed escalation processes are required, including end-of-life preferences, advanced care and treatment escalation plans.
  • Staff to effectively communicate their concerns. This includes human factors and structured communication.

We already have a south London managing deterioration improvement programme as part of the national patient safety improvement work. Consequently, our team is contributing to national developments and assisting regional and local efforts aimed at optimising patient outcomes during the pandemic. We are also building connections with a growing number of digital projects aimed at enabling remote assessment and monitoring of patients within the community setting.

Our Programme Director for Patient Safety and Experience, Catherine Dale, is a national co-lead for the Patient Safety Collaboratives on deterioration and was instrumental in the delivery of a very successful national webinar for GPs working hard at the front line to tackle Covid-19.

Our Tracheostomy programme as part of the Patient Safety and Experience team’s wider response to Covid-19. Through the South London Critical Care Network and other local colleagues, we have been exploring what inpatient tracheostomy care looks like currently in trusts and how teams can be supported to improve it and make it even safer during these challenging times. The team are also starting to think about what service provision is available for tracheostomy care in the community, for those discharged from hospital. Find out more about the AHSN Safe tracheostomy care work here.
Our Patient Safety and Experience team is still working in collaboration with Revealing Reality and Hill+Knowlton Strategies, adapting our previous work on Behavioural Insights into Catheter Careto support and protect the health and wellbeing of healthcare staff during the current pandemic. Many staff in the NHS and beyond have found themselves in strange new territory or have been greatly affected by this global crisis. We are applying our experience of Behavioural Insights and Quality Improvement to a new project that aims to support south London staff and equip them to face the challenges ahead.
Care and outcomes for women and babies remains a priority during the pandemic. The team has been working with local trusts, as well as teams nationally, to support the sharing of intelligence and spread of innovations with the aim of maximising learning and improving safety.

We are supporting four units in south London to adopt a standardised assessment and triage system called The Birmingham Symptom-specific Obstetric Triage System (BSOTS). This provides a framework for women to be assessed quickly and reliably when presenting with concerns and those who need urgent care are prioritised, rather than reviewing women in order of attendance.

We have also been supporting the spread of the QUiPP app – a locally born clinical decision-support tool that helps to predict the likelihood of preterm delivery when a woman presents at hospital. The supporting toolkit for adoption has been rapidly rolled out during the pandemic as this innovation helps to decrease unnecessary admissions and transfers.

In partnership with our London colleagues, we have also begun to consider safety practices and cultures in maternity and neonatal care in the coming months as we enter the next phase of the pandemic.

There is evidence that patients who have information about their medicines when they are transferred to their usual community pharmacy are less likely to be readmitted to hospital. In the current Covid-19 response, with large numbers of patients being discharged quickly, it is imperative that medication safety is not overlooked. TCAM schemes are a structured way to pass on medicines information from hospital settings to community pharmacies. Trusts that already have TCAM schemes in place are asked to review their referral criteria to make sure patients at the highest risk and with the greatest need are prioritised.

We are are working with trusts who are yet to establish TCAM schemes by engaging with hospital pharmacists, community pharmacists and local pharmaceutical committees (LPCs) in those areas.

“High quality, safe care can be achieved through preparation, planning and education; the National Patient Safety Improvement Programme has created this important national program to rapidly develop the skills and knowledge for bedside staff to deliver safe tracheostomy care everywhere.”
Brendan McGrath – National Clinical Advisor for National Patient Safety Improvement Programme Covid-19 Response (Safe Tracheostomy Care); Intensive Care Consultant, Manchester University NHS FT

The team will be very happy to hear from you if you want to know more about any of our projects above or discuss support for your local work, contact hin.southlondon@nhs.net

You can also access nationally available resources and webinars on the AHSN Network Patient Safety COVID-19 webpage here.

DigitalHealth.London Accelerator opens for applications

DigitalHealth.London Accelerator opens for applications today

Call-out for the next generation of digital innovation to transform health and care

Digital products and services are currently providing vital innovation, support and capacity to the NHS during the response to Covid-19. Today, DigitalHealth.London opens applications to their flagship Accelerator programme for the next generation of digital health companies to transform health and care.

Now in its fifth consecutive year, the NHS-delivered programme, funded in part by the European Regional Development Fund, has supported some of the biggest and most effective digital innovations being used by the NHS in London. Companies including LIVIPatchwork HealthEchoSweatcoinHealth Navigator and Perfect Ward have all been through the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme. From enabling remote GP appointments, to transforming NHS temporary staffing and patient-facing self-management apps, the Accelerator has supported some of the best digital innovations now being widely used. Whilst the health and care system is under pressure like never before, the need for innovations to solve problems both today and in the future remains vital.

To date, the Accelerator has supported 105 innovative digital health companies, with 160 additional NHS contracts signed by those companies. For every £1 spent on the programme, it is estimated over £14 is saved for the NHS*.

Sara Nelson, Programme Director, DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, said: “Never before has the need for the right digital innovations to be delivering for our NHS and patients been so profound.  Digital health products are introducing new ways of doing things and enabling key services to continue where they might otherwise have been cancelled or postponed. We are extremely proud of the companies and NHS organisations we have worked with over the past five years. Today, we are excited to accept applications for the next cohort of innovators. With the growing need for safe and effective digital innovations, we are looking forward to working with innovators and the many NHS staff and patients across London’s health and care sector who have recently been inspired by technology and its potential.”

Anna King, Commercial Director, Health Innovation Network, one of the founding partners of DigitalHealth.London said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme remains one of the most influential programmes of its kind, supporting fast-growing, high-potential digital health businesses. It is also helping London establish its place as one of the most exciting and innovative digital health and care hubs in the world, with scope to develop, validate and scale innovations. I’d urge any digital health innovator who has a product or service that could support the NHS to consider joining this programme.”

Theo Blackwell, Chief Digital Officer for London, said: “I am delighted to continue to support the Accelerator as it opens for applications again, and I am looking forward to the next group of innovators bringing their products and services to Londoners. The programme’s work ensures that London is at the forefront of digital innovation and is vital to building a future where its citizens benefit from the latest technologies to support their health.”

Tara Donnelly, Chief Digital Officer, NHSX, said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator is part of a digital revolution in the NHS that continues rapidly to develop, and we will continue to support innovative organisations delivering ground-breaking work.

“This programme has established itself as an important player in supporting the NHS and social care to make the most of the opportunities digital health tech offers.”

Anas Nader, Co-Founder, Patchwork Health, Accelerator programme 2019-20, said: “We’re so proud of how widely our technology has already been embraced across the NHS and the impact we’re having on the lives of thousands of clinicians. We were delighted to join the 2019-20 cohort of DigitalHealth.London’s Accelerator, a brilliant programme speeding up adoption of digital health innovations in the NHS. The programme has provided us with opportunities to connect with industry experts as well as other health tech innovators. I’d encourage companies like ours with good ideas and big ambitions to apply.”

Joachim Werr, CEO, Health Navigator, Accelerator programme 2018-19, said: “The most valuable thing we experienced on the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme was the connections made with executives and decision makers within NHS organisations, and with central NHS policy makers, for example in NHS England and NHS improvement. Our NHS Navigator, combined with the expertise within the Accelerator’s network, have helped us reach the people that can make change happen in the NHS. We’d like to wish all companies applying good luck in what is a hugely competitive and valuable programme.”

DigitalHealth.London’s Accelerator aims to speed up the adoption of technology in London’s NHS, relieving high pressure on services and empowering patients to manage their health. It works with up to 20 high-potential SMEs over a 12-month period, giving bespoke support and advice, a programme of expert-led workshops and events and brokering meaningful connections between innovators and NHS organisations with specific challenges. The companies that are successful in getting onto the Accelerator programme are chosen through a rigorous and highly competitive selection process, involving expert NHS and industry panel assessments, interviews and due diligence checks. Companies that have a product or solution that is well-defined and are ready to start building their evidence base are likely to benefit the most from the type of support offered through the programme. Throughout the 12 months, the programme focuses on engagement with different elements of the health and care system. Company suitability is assessed based both on product maturity (meaning products that are ready to be trailed or bought that have high potential to meet NHS challenges) and on the company’s capacity to benefit from the programme (meaning companies have enough time and staff to engage).

For more information and how to apply, click here.

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Helping break unwelcome news

Helping break unwelcome news COVID-19 outbreak

Health Education England has published a set of materials and films which aim to support staff through difficult conversations arising from the Covid-19 outbreak.

The AHSN Network was part of a small group of people that helped pull this resource together in less than two weeks.

The framework includes posters and films based on the evidence base from Real Talk and then filmed with willing volunteers.

You can also follow #UnwelcomeNews on Twitter.

Start here for an introduction to the framework: Discussion of Unwelcome News during the Covid-19 pandemic: a framework for health and social care professionals

You can watch the films here:

  1. The framework
  2. Community
  3. Breaking bad news
  4. Ceilings of treatment

Then access the resources here:

Follow this link for more information on patient safety during Covid-19.

New digital innovations tested for vulnerable people during Covid-19 outbreak

New digital innovations tested for vulnerable people during Covid-19 outbreak

Testing starts today as 18 winners of TechForce19 challenge announced

People who are particularly vulnerable or isolated as a result of the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak could soon benefit from a range of innovative digital solutions selected as part of the TechForce19 challenge.

NHSX and MHCLG have announced 18 digital solutions that have been awarded funding under the TechForce19 challenge. TechForce19 has awarded up to £25,000 each to innovation that offers a digital way to support vulnerable people who need to stay at home or need other help in the community for extended periods of time. The response to the challenge was extremely strong, with over 1,600 innovations submitted.

The successful solutions will now receive funding to rapidly test their product to meet specific Covid-19 related needs.

This testing phase will last for two to three weeks, and be followed by an assessment to better understand the potential and scope for accelerated deployment at scale, based on evidence.

NHSX has been working with partners PUBLIC and the AHSN Network to run the fast-track competition for innovators, creating a pool of technologies that have the potential to be rapidly scaled regionally and nationally.

Each prospective technology must have the capability to operate on a standalone basis without the need to be integrated with existing health or care systems.

Examples of the solutions going forward include:

  • Feebris for the most vulnerable who are isolating

Feebris helps carers to identify health risks and deterioration within elderly communities. The Feebris app guides a carer through a 10min check-up, including capture of vital signs from connected medical-grade sensors (digital stethoscope, pulse oximeter etc.). Powerful AI augments clinical guidelines and personalised monitoring to help decisions on triaging health issues. The intention is to provide Feebris to care homes to help carers triage the day-to-day health needs of their residents during the Covid-19 pandemic, and also enhance the capabilities of remote clinicians.

  • Neurolove to support young people with mental health

Chanua provides Neurolove.org, a platform providing a friendly ear and human support for young people to help them to keep virtually social and safe online. Supporting young people to manage anxiety and low mood, they can book sessions directly with mentors and therapists and find content that will support them to manage their emotional and mental health in this current period of uncertainty.

  • Peppy for new parents

Peppy helps parents-to-be and new parents remotely access trusted, convenient advice from perinatal and mental health experts. This includes remote support via phone/video with lactation consultants, baby sleep consultants, specialist mental health support and more. Peppy provides timely interventions that reduce stress, anxiety and burn out for parents-to-be and new parents.

  • Team Kinetic for volunteers

TeamKinetic’s digital platform helps organisations better manage community-led volunteer programmes. The solution helps manage recruitment and retention of volunteers, as well as monitoring the impact of these programmes in real time. TeamKinetic are also looking at developing and documenting some open standards and establishing a model for better service interconnectivity across the voluntary sector.

  • Vinehealth for cancer patients

Vinehealth is a mobile app to support cancer patients and their loved ones during treatment by allowing them to easily track and understand their care, including their symptoms, side effects, appointments and medications. By completing a 1-minute daily log, cancer patients can develop a clear overview of their progress through treatment and access advice on how to cope and when to access health services. The Vinehealth app empowers cancer patients who are self-isolating to self-manage and feel more in control.

“The TechForce19 challenge has harnessed some of the incredible talent we have in our tech sector to help the most vulnerable. Many of the problems created by isolation lend themselves to digital solutions, and we hope this process will help people take advantage of the potential that digital technology offers.

“The 18 companies we are announcing today have the potential to help a number of the key affected groups during Covid-19, including young parents, the elderly at home, and the homeless, as well as giving people tools to look after their own mental health during isolation.”

Guy Boersma, Digital & AI Lead, The AHSN Network, said:

“This list of solutions is testament to the talent being harnessed to address the consequences of the Covid-19 crisis. The health and care sector has already seen many solutions being deployed to support vulnerable citizens with mental health needs or other specific conditions, and the pandemic makes it even more necessary that we address the needs of citizens unable to access face-to-face care or even their usual social networks.

We are delighted that we have a series of solutions which can be piloted and then scaled to address these pressing needs.”

Daniel Korski, CEO of PUBLIC, said:

“As social distancing measures continue, today’s selections amount to a wealth of possible answers to helping the most vulnerable through these difficult times.

These companies demonstrate the valuable role for new technologies in helping public services adapt to new challenges, and we’re excited to follow their journeys from here through to deployment.”

For more information about the programme visit Techforce19.uk

Full list of digital innovations:

  1. Feebris for the most vulnerable who are isolating

Feebris helps carers to identify health risks and deterioration within elderly communities. The Feebris app guides a carer through a 10min check-up, including capture of vital signs from connected medical-grade sensors (digital stethoscope, pulse oximeter etc.). Powerful AI augments clinical guidelines and personalised monitoring to help decisions on triaging health issues. The intention is to provide Feebris to care homes to help carers triage the day-to-day health needs of their residents during the Covid-19 pandemic, and also enhance the capabilities of remote clinicians.

  1. Chanua / Neurolove to support young people with mental health

Chanua provides Neurolove.org, a platform providing a friendly ear and human support for young people to help them to keep virtually social and safe online. Supporting young people to manage anxiety and low mood, they can book sessions directly with mentors and therapists and find content that will support them to manage their emotional and mental health in this current period of uncertainty.

  1. Peppy for new parents

Peppy helps parents-to-be and new parents remotely access trusted, convenient advice from perinatal and mental health experts. This includes remote support via phone/video with lactation consultants, baby sleep consultants, specialist mental health support and more. Peppy provides timely interventions that reduce stress, anxiety and burn out for parents-to-be and new parents.

  1. Team Kinetic for volunteers

TeamKinetic’s digital platform helps organisations better manage community-led volunteer programmes. The solution helps manage recruitment and retention of volunteers, as well as monitoring the impact of these programmes in real time. TeamKinetic are also looking at developing and documenting some open standards and establishing a model for better service interconnectivity across the voluntary sector.

  1. Vine Health for cancer patients

Vinehealth is a mobile app to support cancer patients and their loved ones during treatment by allowing them to easily track and understand their care, including their symptoms, side effects, appointments and medications. By completing a 1-minute daily log, cancer patients can develop a clear overview of their progress through treatment and access advice on how to cope and when to access health services. The Vinehealth app empowers cancer patients who are self-isolating to self-manage and feel more in control.

  1. Beam for homeless population

Beam is a digital platform that supports the homeless and vulnerable people sleeping rough. Beam takes referrals from local authorities and homeless charities, then ensures goods are funded, delivered and documented.

  1. Alcuris Ltd

Alcuris’ Memohub® prolongs the independence of elderly or vulnerable people, enabling them to return to home quicker, from hospital discharge. A digital platform collates data from unobtrusive sensors placed in the home, then provides actionable alerts when behaviour changes, enabling families to intervene early to delay or reduce the frequency of professional ‘crisis intervention’ help. This gives family a reassurance of loved one’s safety and wellbeing even when left alone for extended periods. Also provides objective information to inform professional care planning.

  1. Ampersand

Ampersand Health‘s self-management apps help people with long term, immune mediated diseases (such as Crohn’s and Colitis) live happier and healthier lives. Using behavioural and data science, the apps deliver courses and programmes designed to improve sleep quality, stress management and medication adherence; with modules for activity, diet and relationships in the works. During the Covid-19 crisis, this will help these people better manage their conditions and reduce the need for clinical support. Ampersand are also offering their clinical management portal free of charge to NHS Trusts until January 2021, no strings attached. This will allow clinical teams to help manage their patients, remotely.

  1. Aparito

Aparito uses remote monitoring technology (videos, wearables, photos and text) to gather patient-generated data outside of hospital. This is focused on patients with rare diseases. Data is captured and transferred via the patient’s own smartphone / tablet and made available to clinicians or researchers in real-time to help avoid direct contact during the Covid-19 crisis.

  1. Birdie

Birdie provides a digital platform for home care agencies to better manage the care they provide. Through an easy to use app, care workers capture daily visit logs, and a central hub allows staff to track real-time information. Family members receive live and daily safety and well-being updates through the app, including from optional home monitoring sensors. Birdie helps domiciliary care agencies to increase efficiency, and improves the care people receive in their homes through systematic monitoring, prevention of risks, and support to carers.

  1. Buddi

Buddi Connect is a smartphone app, enabling people to stay in touch with those they care for. Safe groups of connections are united through the app to share private, secure messages and raise instant alerts when help is needed. Important messages from the NHS can be shared directly to users. During this difficult time, while many vulnerable people are missing the face-to-face contact of family, friends and carers, the reassurance that help is available at the touch of a button is more important than ever.

  1. Just Checking

Just Checking supplies activity monitoring systems, used by local authorities to help with assessment of older people in their homes, for social care. Sensors pick up activities of daily living and display the data in a 24-hour chart. The company also has a second, more sophisticated activity monitoring system, to help manage the care and support of adults with learning disabilities.

  1. Peopletoo Ltd/ Novoville

Peopletoo and Novoville have been selected to launch GetVolunteering, a volunteering app to fast track volunteers into clinical and non-clinical roles to support the fight against Covid-19. It will enable local authorities to quickly identify and assess capable volunteers in the local community to fill key roles to support social care in areas that have been impacted by loss of staffing capacity due to Covid-19, or for new roles that are required during the crisis.

  1. RIX Research & Media, University of East London

The RIX Multi Me toolkit provides highly accessible and secure social networking that serves as a support network for people with learning disabilities and mental health challenges. This easy to use multimedia network, with accompanying communication, personal-organiser and goal-setting tools, enables isolated and distanced vulnerable people to build stronger support circles. It helps them self-manage their care and actively limit the impact and spread of Covid-19 infection. Care professionals use the ‘Stay Connected’ RIX Multi Me Toolkit to remotely monitor and support people’s wellbeing in an efficient and friendly way.

  1. Simply Do

Simply Do will develop a virtual community of NHS medical professionals currently in self-isolation. These employees have significant expertise, experience and skills which can be unlocked virtually to help solve Covid-19 care challenges set within the platform. This will create a powerful ‘think-tank’ of medical professionals to contribute virtually to fight Covid-19 by solving wider health challenges (i.e. challenges faced in the care sector).

  1. SureCert

SureCert is a digital platform that connects people with job and volunteering opportunities. The system also manages background checks. SureCert can provide data on successful placements, and information to enable policy makers to better understand the labour market and volunteering supply and demand.

  1. VideoVisit Global Ltd

VideoVisit® HOME allows the elderly to communicate with their family members and home care providers through a virtual care tablet designed specifically for elderly. VideoVisit will measure how this virtual home care service can increase people’s feeling of safety and decrease loneliness during self-isolation.

  1. Virti

Virti aims to make experiential education affordable and accessible for everyone. Virtual and augmented reality, coupled with AI, transports users into difficult to access environments and safely assesses them under pressure to improve their performance. The system is used for training and patient education.

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Testing platform supports target of 100,000 Covid-19 tests per day

Testing platform supports target of 100,000 COVID-19 tests per day

A new platform has been set up to support the drive to achieve 100,000 coronavirus tests per day by the end of April – the platform can be accessed here.

In addition to scaling up existing technologies and channels, the government is looking for innovative solutions in specific areas. Solutions, ideas and comments can be uploaded to the platform, focusing on four key challenges:

  1. Dry swabs for use in virus detection– availability of swabs is essential to speed up testing;
  2. Transport media that inactivates the virus– increasing laboratory throughput and minimising processes including the need to handle test samples;
  3. Desktop PCR equipment for Point of Care Testing– using machines that enable fast, accurate and safe results for the operator;
  4. RNA extraction– new ‘ready to go’ methods of extracting viral RNA or enabling viral detection without an extraction step that can be integrated into PCR testing chains.

The platform is a partnership between the Department of Health and Social Care, the UK Bioindustry Association, British In Vitro Diagnostics Association and the Royal College of Pathologists.

We understand that every idea will be evaluated and that all submissions will receive a response.

Registration is quick via an email address or by signing in with Twitter, Facebook, Google or LinkedIn. Whilst the system is ‘open platform’ to encourage sharing, contributions can be made confidentially through a private submission tab.

Please share this opportunity with others who may be able to contribute solutions to the four challenges – the Twitter hashtag is #TestingMethods2020

New funding opportunities for members April

New funding opportunities for members

We try to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

RISPRO International Collaboration Call. Deadline: 30th May 2020
The Managing Agency of the Endowment Fund for Education (recently known as LPDP) has recently launched the RISPRO International Collaboration (RISPRO-KI). The objective of the scheme is mainly to accelerate the national invention through international research collaboration. The transformation of collaboration outcome from “Co-authorship to Co-invention” becomes a target of this scheme. The call aims to provide grants for health and other key areas. For more information click here.

GCRF demonstrate impact in developing countries: round 2, phase 1. Deadline: 6 May 2020
Organisations can apply for a share of up to £9.3 million to demonstrate market-creating innovations in lower income countries and emerging economies. For more information click here.

Creative England Investments. Deadline: open.
Creative England is supporting SMEs by providing competitive loans to digital businesses in order to make their growth plans a reality. The investments on offer are intended to fuel this fast-growing sector by financing business expansion and new products, leading to the creation of new high-quality jobs and Intellectual Property (IP). Loans from £50,000 – £250,000 are available with repayment terms ranging from 3-36 months. Interest rates range from 5% – 10%, depending on the risk profile of the applicant. This includes companies from within the digital healthcare sector. For more information click here.

OTHER FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES:

INNOVATE UK:
Innovation Scholars secondments: biomedical sciences, strands 1-3. Deadline: April/Various.
UKRI invites applications for individuals from any discipline wishing to spend up to 36 months (full or part time) on secondment in the biomedical sciences sector. £5 million fund. For more information click here.

SBRI: monitor and visualise domestic pollution to safeguard health. Deadline: 15 April 2020.
Organisations can apply for a share of £100,000 including VAT, to develop an air quality monitor to provide information and advice on pollutants in the home. For more information click here.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: January 2020. Deadline: 22 April 2020
Opportunity to apply for a share of up to £25 million to deliver ambitious or disruptive R&D innovations that can make a significant impact on the UK economy. For more information click here.

UK-Canada: enhancing agricultural productivity and sustainability. Deadline: 20 May 2020.
UK businesses with Canadian business partners can apply for a share of up to £2 million, from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, for innovative projects that enhance productivity and sustainability of crop, livestock and aquaculture systems. For more information click here.

Knowledge Transfer Partnership. Deadline: 6 May 2020.
A Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) links your organisation with one of the UK’s world-class knowledge bases (a university or research organisation) to power strategic innovation projects, embed expertise and drive commercial growth. needed to develop it, a Knowledge Transfer Partnership may be the answer. For more information click here.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities click here.

DEFENCE AND SECURITY ACCELERATOR (DASA):
Open Competition: Emerging Innovations
In this category, DSTL are encouraging the submission of proposals across a wide range of technology areas with the aim of finding new and novel opportunities for these to be exploited across Defence and/or Security. Emerging innovations are viewed as those which will deliver a proof of concept at around Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 3 or 4, which in outline means delivering a proof of concept, with component and/or sub-system validation in laboratory-style environment by the end of your proposed work. Click here to find out more.

Open Competition: Rapid Impact Innovations
Proposals in this category are encouraged for projects which have a realistic prospect of achieving an impact within a 3 year time frame from the commencement of the project. In this category, there is an expectation that proposals will be funded only if there is a strong customer pull and capability need for the idea. Accordingly, additional effort will be required by suppliers to ensure there is positive user interest in the idea before submitting a proposal. Click here to find out more.

For more information on all DSTL – DASA funding opportunities click here. 

NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH RESEARCH (NIHR):

HTA stage 1 applications – researcher-led workstream (open call) Deadline: 6 May 2020.
The Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme funds research about the clinical and cost-effectiveness and broader impact of healthcare treatments and tests for those who plan, provide or receive care from NHS and social care services. For more information click here.

There are many funding opportunities with an emphasis on research. Click here to find our more click here. 

ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (ESRC): Research Grants. Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development. Click here to find out more.

ENGINEERING AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (EPSRC):
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities click here.

MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (MRC)
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists.

Health Systems Research Initiative Call 7: Providing evidence to strengthen health systems in low and middle income countries. Deadline: 28 May 2020.
Innovative proposals are sought from across the public health, social and biomedical sciences to the seventh annual call for the Health Systems Research Initiative. Up to £4.7 million is available for funding foundation and full proposals under this call. For more information click here.

For MRC funding opportunities click here.

TRUSTS AND CHARITIES:

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. To access their database click here.

OTHER UK GOVERNMENT, SEED FUNDS AND LOANS:

Strategic Priorities Fund: Centre for Doctoral Training in Food Systems. Deadline: 13 May 2020
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) in partnership with government are pleased to announce a £5 million call to support one Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) focused on developing the next generation of interdisciplinary food systems thinkers. For more information click here.

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK: Deadline: Open.
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance. For more information click here.

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base. For more information click here.

HSBC Loan Fund. Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply. For more information click here. 

INTERNATIONAL:

The Global Challenges Research Fund. Click here to find out more.
The Newton Fund. Click here to find out more.
European Funding. Click here to find out more.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program Click here to find out more. 

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline click here

NEWS:

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome & Mastercard COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard have committed up to $125 million in seed funding to speed-up the response to the COVID-19 epidemic by identifying, assessing, developing, and scaling-up treatments. The partners are committed to equitable access, including making products available and affordable in low-resource settings. The COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator will play a catalytic role by accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs and biologics to treat patients with COVID-19 in the immediate term, and other viral pathogens in the longer-term. Currently there are no broad-spectrum antivirals or immunotherapies available for the fight against emerging pathogens, and none approved for use on COVID-19. For more information click here.

Pre-Announcement of ISCF Healthy Ageing Social, Behavioural & Design Research Programme
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) are inviting applications to the ISCF Healthy Ageing Social Behavioural and Design Research Programme (SBDRP) to support world-leading research that makes a significant contribution to the lives of people as they age.Proposals may include, but are not limited to:

  • Approaches that address creating healthy and active environments (including maintaining health at work)
  • The life course
  • Understanding the behaviour of consumers of healthy ageing products and services
  • Inclusive design.

A total budget of £9.5 million is available for the call and UKRI are inviting projects of up to £2 million and of no more than 36 months duration. These figures are presented at 100% fEC and ESRC will contribute 80% of fEC. The call for proposals will open in May 2020 with a deadline scheduled in June 2020

Innovate UK launches new 3-year programme for Young Innovators 

New findings from Innovate UK show that half of young people in the UK think their age is a barrier to business success. The programme will support up to 100 young people, with £5K funding, one-to-one coaching and an allowance to cover living costs. The national Young Innovators Awards will go to 18-30 year olds with a creative and ground-breaking business idea. For more information click here.

Also coming soon:
Healthy Ageing Challenge
Catalyst Awards:
UKRI is working with the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) in the USA as a Global Collaborator in their Healthy Longevity Grand Challenge. They will commission a set of Catalyst Awards to support early stage innovation and stimulate interest in global opportunities.

Collaborative R&D Competition:
The aim of the Collaborative R&D competition is to focus on the high-potential early stage collaborative projects, which address key opportunities that would not otherwise be eligible for funding under the Trailblazer nor the Investment Accelerator programmes.

Tech challenge launched to offer digital support during Covid-19 outbreak

Tech challenge launched to offer digital support during COVID-19 outbreak

  • Tech challenge launched to combat effects of social isolation;
  • Innovators urged to find ways to deliver mental health and social care support digitally;
  • £500,000 worth of Government funding available to start work within weeks.

People confined at home because of Coronavirus (Covid-19) could soon benefit from new technology to combat the effects of social isolation.

Funding is being made available by NHSX through ‘Techforce 19’, for innovators who can find digital ways to support those who need help, including people requiring mental health support and those with social care needs.

The technology is intended to support those who may be most affected by the consequences of remaining housebound for long periods of time.

Announcing the fund, Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, said:

“If people cannot leave the house, we need to quickly find ways to bring support to them and today I am calling on the strength of our innovative technology sector to take on this challenge. Techforce19 will mobilise the UK’s incredible reservoir of talent to develop simple, accessible tools that can be rolled out quickly and help tackle the effect of social isolation.”

The programme is being launched by NHSX and is being managed by GovTech venture firm PUBLIC and the AHSN Network.

Piers Ricketts, Chair of the AHSN Network, said:

“The AHSN Network is dedicated to furthering successful collaborations between innovators and the health and social care system. Our well-connected teams throughout the country are ready to support NHSX and PUBLIC with this important call out to industry.

I encourage all innovators with a relevant idea, or with existing technology which could be adapted or scaled, to apply to this programme and help support the most vulnerable and isolated during this difficult time.”

In total, there is £500,000 available to bid for – with funding of up to £25,000 per company available to innovators with solutions that could be deployed at scale in the next few weeks. Specifically, the programme is looking for digital solutions that can be deployed quickly, and could include:

  • Providing remote social care;
  • Optimisation of the care and volunteer sector;
  • Messaging and communication;
  • Mental health support – for example through peer communities or self-management tools;
  • Any other solutions to ease pressures on services and people during this time.

Matthew Gould, Chief Executive of NHSX, said:

“Tech can play an important role in helping the country deal with the challenges created by the Coronavirus.  This competition is focussed on the problems created by isolation, which lend themselves to digital solutions. It will allow NHSX to accelerate the development of those solutions, so within weeks they can help those in isolation suffering from loneliness, mental health issues and other problems.”

The Government has strongly advised everyone in the country – but especially those aged 70 or over, people with underlying medical conditions or pregnant women – to reduce social interaction to help minimise the spread of the virus. Those considered most at risk of having serious complications from the virus – for instance people receiving treatment for cancer – have also been asked to stay at home for 12 weeks as part of efforts to ‘shield’ them from the virus.”

Techforce19 is a new challenge, open to innovative tech companies in this country who will compete to develop accessible digital tools to support people who are staying at home over the coming weeks and months.

For more information on the programme and how to apply, visit Techforce19.uk.

Recruitment for innovators taking part in the challenge programme opens today, Monday 23 March. The closing date for applications is 1 April 2020.

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How is the AHSN Network supporting the response to Covid-19?

Map of the AHSNs

How is the AHSN Network supporting the response to COVID-19?

All AHSNs within the AHSN Network are actively supporting the NHS and social care system regarding the Covid-19 pandemic.

If you would like advice on immediate or future needs, and how best to present your offer to local and/ or national commissioners, please contact the commercial team at your local AHSN via the AHSN Network Innovation Exchange or register online. Use the postcode checker to help you find your local AHSN.

The government has provided national guidance on where to register products to support the Covid-19 response. Please find these details below.

PPE (Personal Protection Equipment)

Contact the Surgical MedTech Co-operative (one of NIHR’s Medtech and In vitro diagnostics Co-operatives) if you have a technology that could be adapted quickly for the healthcare setting to help protect healthcare workers against aerosol contamination. Find out more about their ‘Covid-19 PPE Challenge’ here.

 Vaccines

Contact Public Health England: nervtag@phe.gov.uk

 Ventilators

Contact the Government’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS): ventilator.support@beis.gov.uk or call 0300 456 3565

 Innovation and Tech

Contact NHSX: DNHSX@nhsx.nhs.uk

 Diagnostics

Contact Public Health England: coviddiagnostics@phe.gov.uk

General

The UK government has set up a service allowing businesses to share any support that might help the Covid-19 response, from PPE and medical testing equipment to transport/logistics and warehouse space. Find out more here.

If you have any other solutions (not specifically Covid-19 related) that could be useful to the health and care system during this unprecedented time, you can access AHSN advice and support by visiting www.ahsninnovationexchange.co.uk.

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

The Coast to Capital Growth Grant Programme. Deadline: Open.  
The Coast to Capital Growth Grant Programme is now open for SME businesses who have been operating in the West Sussex, Brighton & Hove, East Surrey, Croydon, and Lewes District for at least one year.
The grant is designed to stimulate capital investment to help businesses introduce innovation and improve productivity. 
A total of £3.5m of funding is available to fund capital grant projects of between £40k and £170k. 

Businesses can apply for up to 40% grant funding towards the cost of equipment/software and other capital items to make them more competitive. Minimum project size is £100,000, meaning the applicant will need to bring 60% (£60,000) in match funding.
For more information click here.

Innovation Scholars secondments: biomedical sciences, strands 1-3. Deadline: Various.
UKRI invites applications for individuals from any discipline wishing to spend up to 36 months (full or part time) on secondment in the biomedical sciences sector. £5 million fund. For more information click here.  

The Health Foundation: Common Ambition. Deadline: 20 March 2020.
The Health Foundation has launched an exciting new £2.1m programme for partnerships developing collaborative communities where people, families, health care professionals and researchers work together to improve health care. The Common Ambition programme will support up to five ambitious teams across the UK to work towards a shared aim: to build sustainable change across health care through collaboration between those who use services and those who deliver them. For more information click here.

Biomedical Catalyst: Developmental Pathway Funding Scheme (DPFS) Deadline: 25 March 2020
DPFS is an ongoing scheme, with outline deadlines every 4 months. The DPFS scheme is a key part of our Translational Research Strategy and supports the translation of fundamental discoveries toward benefits to human health. It funds the pre-clinical development and early clinical testing of novel therapeutics, devices and diagnostics, including “repurposing” of existing therapies. For more information click here.

Strategic Priorities Fund: Centre for Doctoral Training in Food SystemsDeadline: 13 May 2020
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) in partnership with government are pleased to announce a £5 million call to support one Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) focused on developing the next generation of interdisciplinary food systems thinkers. For more information click here.

Health Systems Research Initiative Call 7: Providing evidence to strengthen health systems in low and middle income countries. Deadline: 28 May 2020.
Innovative proposals are sought from across the public health, social and biomedical sciences to the seventh annual call for the Health Systems Research Initiative. Up to £4.7 million is available for funding foundation and full proposals under this call. For more information click here.

OTHER FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES:

SBRI: monitor and visualise domestic pollution to safeguard health. Deadline: 15 April 2020.
Organisations can apply for a share of £100,000 including VAT, to develop an air quality monitor to provide information and advice on pollutants in the home. For more information click here.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: January 2020. Deadline: 22 April 2020
Opportunity to apply for a share of up to £25 million to deliver ambitious or disruptive R&D innovations that can make a significant impact on the UK economy. For more information click here.

UK-Canada: enhancing agricultural productivity and sustainabilityDeadline: 20 May 2020.
UK businesses with Canadian business partners can apply for a share of up to £2 million, from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, for innovative projects that enhance productivity and sustainability of crop, livestock and aquaculture systems. For more information click here.

For more information on all open IUK funding opportunities click here.

DEFENCE AND SECURITY ACCELERATOR (DASA):
Open Competition: Emerging Innovations
In this category, DSTL are encouraging the submission of proposals across a wide range of technology areas with the aim of finding new and novel opportunities for these to be exploited across Defence and/or Security. Emerging innovations are viewed as those which will deliver a proof of concept at around Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 3 or 4, which in outline means delivering a proof of concept, with component and/or sub-system validation in laboratory-style environment by the end of your proposed work. Click here to find out more.

Open Competition: Rapid Impact Innovations
Proposals in this category are encouraged for projects which have a realistic prospect of achieving an impact within a 3 year time frame from the commencement of the project. In this category, there is an expectation that proposals will be funded only if there is a strong customer pull and capability need for the idea. Accordingly, additional effort will be required by suppliers to ensure there is positive user interest in the idea before submitting a proposal. Click here to find out more.

For more information on all DSTL – DASA funding opportunities click here. 

HTA stage 1 applications – researcher-led workstream (open call) Deadline: 6 May 2020.
The Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme funds research about the clinical and cost-effectiveness and broader impact of healthcare treatments and tests for those who plan, provide or receive care from NHS and social care services. For more information click here.

There are many funding opportunities with an emphasis on research. Click here to find our more. 

BIOTECHNOLOGY & BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (BBSRC)
The BBSRC work with industry and academia (and other sectors and research councils) to develop world leading biotechnology and bioscience. For more funding opportunities click here. 

ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (ESRC): Research Grants. Deadline: Open call.
If you have an excellent idea for a research project, the EPSRC have their Research Grants open call. Awards ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full Economic Cost (fEC)) can be made to eligible institutions to enable individuals or research teams to undertake anything from a standard research project through to a large-scale survey and other infrastructure or methodological development. Click here to find out more.

ENGINEERING AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCIL (EPSRC):
The EPSRC is the main funding body for engineering and physical research sciences. For EPSRC funding opportunities click here.

MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL (MRC)
The Medical Research Council (MRC) improves the health of people in the UK – and around the world – by supporting excellent science, and training the very best scientists. For MRC funding opportunities click here.

TRUSTS AND CHARITIES:

Association of Medical Research Charities
Over 30 years ago a small, diverse group of medical research charities form the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) to unite the sector and provide it with a leading voice. Since then their membership has grown to over 140 charities.  In 2018, these charities invested £1.3 billion in medical research. To access their database click here.

OTHER UK GOVERNMENT, SEED FUNDS AND LOANS:

THE BRITISH BUSINESS BANK: Deadline: Open.
BBB are a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. Whether you’re looking for finance to start a business, grow to the next level, or stay ahead of the competition, they say that they can deliver greater volume and choice of finance. For more information click here.

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund. Open. 
The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base. For more information click here.

HSBC Loan Fund. Open.
HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply. For more information click here. 
Knowledge Transfer Partnerships. Deadline for current round: 04.03.20
Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP)  links an organisation with one of the UK’s world-class knowledge bases (a university or research organisation) to power strategic innovation projects, embed expertise and drive commercial growth.  For more information click here.

INTERNATIONAL:

The Global Challenges Research Fund. Click here to find out more.
The Newton Fund. Click here to find out more.
European Funding. Click here to find out more.
Grants available to UK through US Defense – medical research program Click here to find out more. 

Export Opportunities – To access the Department of International Trades Export Opportunities Pipeline click here

NEWS:

Coming soon:

Healthy Ageing Challenge
IUK have published the Healthy Ageing Challenge. The Trailblazer and Investment Accelerator calls are already on the IUK funding opportunities web page and are set-out in the newsletter above. Starting in 2020, up to £12 million will be available over 4 years to fund the programme Developing a pipeline – Early stage support:

Catalyst Awards:
UKRI is working with the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) in the USA as a Global Collaborator in their Healthy Longevity Grand Challenge. They will commission a set of Catalyst Awards to support early stage innovation and stimulate interest in global opportunities.Design Programme:
The Design Programme will capitalise on the UK’s strength in design, in particular early-stage human centred design to maximise the commercial potential of ideas and innovations in the Healthy Ageing sector. The programme will tackle issues in both the supply and demand of design capabilities.Collaborative R&D Competition:
The aim of the Collaborative R&D competition is to focus on the high-potential early stage collaborative projects, which address key opportunities that would not otherwise be eligible for funding under the Trailblazer nor the Investment Accelerator programmes.

The AI in Health and Care Award: accelerating testing and evaluation of the most promising AI technologies

The AI in Health and Care Award: accelerating testing and evaluation of the most promising AI technologies

The AHSN Network welcomes the launch of the new Artificial Intelligence (AI) Health and Care Award. This will make £140 million available over three years to accelerate the testing and evaluation of the most promising AI technologies that meet the strategic aims set out in the NHS Long Term Plan.

The Award is run by the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC), of which the AHSN Network is a key member, in partnership with NHSX and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

Guy Boersma, AHSN Network Digital & AI Executive Lead, commented: “We welcome the launch of this new fund to fast track the implementation of the most promising AI innovation into frontline care.

“It is an exciting development following the publication of our AI State of Nation report, supporting the creation of the Code of Conduct and now contributing to the distribution of funding to accelerate testing and evaluation of AI technologies.

“AI has the potential to address the many challenges impacting services today, such as those around workforce and the ageing population. As part of the Accelerated Access Collaborative, the AHSN Network looks forward to supporting this programme through the adoption and spread of AI across our strong research and innovation network.”

About the AI in Health and Care Award

The Award will support technologies across the spectrum of development: from initial feasibility and conception through to initial NHS adoption and testing of the AI technology within clinical pathways.
Initially, it will focus on four key areas: screening, diagnosis, decision support and improving system efficiency.

The AI Award is part of the £250 million funding given by the Department for Health and Social Care to NHSX to establish an AI Lab aimed at improving the health and lives of patients. The Award forms a key part of the AAC’s ambition to establish a globally leading testing infrastructure for innovation in the UK.

A call for applications for the Award will run at least twice a year through an open competition to identify appropriate AI technologies for support into the NHS.

The call for applications for the first Award is now open. A second call will be launched in summer this year.

First competition – application information

The application process for the first competition opened on 28 January 2020 and closes at 1.00pm on 4 March 2020. Applicants will be able to identify which phase they should apply for using the self-assessment criteria. Full details are available here.

Support from the AHSNs
Innovators interested in applying for the AI in Health and Care Award are encouraged to talk to their regional AHSN for advice and support. Find your nearest AHSN on our Innovation Exchange digital gateway here.

AI Event – 3 February 2020
The Accelerated Access Collaborative, NHSX and NIHR are holding an AI Event in London on 3 February. This will provide information about opportunities and support available to AI innovators and technologies at all stages of development.
Come to the event to find out more about the most recent developments and upcoming opportunities, hear about the experience of an SME developing an AI product in the NHS, and find out about organisations such as the AHSNs that can support collaborations. In addition, there will be the opportunity for networking and establishing new connections.
Book your place here.

Webinars

A series of webinars are being organised to provide more information to potential applicants:

Initial information session: 31 January 2020, 11-12.00 Join here
Applicant Webex: 4 February 2020, 11:00-12:00 Join here
Applicant Webex: 11 February 2020, 11:00-12:00 Join here
Applicant Webex: 18 February 2020, 11:00-12:00 Join here
Applicant Webex: 25 February 2020, 11:00-12:00 Join here

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ESCAPE-pain trains 1000 trainers

ESCAPE-pain trains 1000 facilitators to help people living with osteoarthritis in boost to out-of-hospital care

By Professor Mike Hurley, Clinical Director MSK Programme, Health Innovation Network and creator of ESCAPE-pain.

If we are serious about achieving the goals of the NHS’ Long Term Plan, physical activity should be prescribe-able on the NHS and we need to facilitate its delivery through leisure centre and community halls.

It is well documented that people in our communities are now living far longer but they are more likely to live with multiple long-term conditions. Osteoarthritis (chronic knee/hip pain) is a major cause of suffering, physical and mental ill-health in people in our country. It is estimated that in England 4.11 million people (18.2 percent of people aged over 45 years) have osteoarthritis of the knee and 2.46 million people (10.9 percent of people aged over 45 years) have osteoarthritis of the hip.

Typically, these patients are managed in primary care. Despite the risk of side effects and high costs, treatment for osteoarthritis is all too often the prescription of painkillers, typically non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, with little to no practical support. Many people with these conditions mistakenly believe that physical activity will make their condition worse, when it can actually benefit them.

Physical activity and reduced pain

There is unequivocal evidence that physical activity can reduce pain, improve mobility and function, quality of life, makes people feel less depressed and gets people up, out and about, while simultaneously improving other health problems. Yet it can’t be prescribed like a drug and there is limited access to this effective treatment inside the NHS.

ESCAPE-pain is an innovation that integrates self-management and coping strategies with an exercise regimen individualised for people living with osteoarthritis. It is an evidence-based, group rehabilitation programme, delivered to small groups of people twice a week, for six weeks (total 12 classes). It was adopted as a case study in NICE’s Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention programme [2013] and delivers the NICE core recommendations of exercise and education for the management of osteoarthritis.

The Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) identified ESCAPE-pain as a national programme for 2018-2020 and so currently all 15 AHSNs are supporting it across the country.

Scaling up
Originally facilitated by physiotherapists in hospital outpatient departments, in 2017 we moved to widen our pool of facilitators to include fitness and leisure centre instructors. We have now trained a total of over 1,000 people to facilitate this programme (629 clinicians and 380 fitness instructors). The widening of our approach to training; going beyond physiotherapists and into the leisure sector, has enabled the programme to be delivered at over 200 locations across the UK, including leisure centres and community halls, to over 4000 people.

Essential to reaching the millions more people who could benefit from this programme is having enough facilitators trained to deliver the it in local communities. Now that over 1000 people have been trained there is a trained facilitator of the programme in every region of England.

Delivering this programme in the community and outside of traditional hospital settings, is a great example of how we can deliver on the Long Term Plan’s ambition to boost out-of-hospital care. I hope the success of this model is, as it could be, replicated in many other areas of care.

Got 30 minutes to learn more about the NHS Innovation landscape? Listen to our AHSN Network Innovation Exchange podcast in which NHS Clinical Director for Older People, Martin Vernon talks Healthy Ageing, featuring Prof Mike Hurley.

Or find out more about ESCAPE-pain and it’s impact here or contact us at hin.southlondon@nhs.net to get involved.

World Mental Health Day: A story of a burning platform for change

A burning platform for change

By Breid O’Brien, HIN Director of Digital Transformation

Today is World Mental Health Day; a day observed by over 150 countries globally to raise awareness and reduce stigma around mental health. In the 17 years since the day was first conceived, society has come a long way in its understanding of mental health. However, even today, people with serious mental illness are still likely to die approximately 15-20 years earlier than other people.

So this World Mental Health Day we would like to highlight some of the incredible progress being made by mental health teams around the world, to bring about parity of esteem in this area by reflecting on a recent roundtable event we held to share learning internationally, where Martin Davis, a Clinical Nurse from New South Wales’ Mental Health Emergency Care division (MHEC), presented on the successful implementation of a virtual consultation system in a rural and remote mental health setting in Australia.

This is a story of a small team that led the way. MHEC was kick started by a government cash injection at a time when the team needed to deliver a better, more cost-effective system of care to its rural and remote population in rural Australia. Before the MHEC service was introduced remote and rural ambulances (and often other emergency services) were transporting patients hundreds of miles just for an acute mental health assessment; taking them from the comfort of their home, family and friends when they were in a vulnerable state, and often leaving their hometown without any emergency provision. Imagine living somewhere where if there was a fire, there would be no one to put it out, simply because they are effectively acting as a patient taxi? Their situation provided a clear rationale for change – a burning platform, if you will. By using virtual consultations, they could save time, save money and deliver faster patient care.

Starting with an 1-800 number 12 years ago and progressing to an online video system just under a decade ago, MHEC now prides itself on answering calls within three rings, and being able to assess patients on a video call within an hour during daytime hours. The stats continue. Every year since its inception, they have saved the combined services over $1,000,000 AUD a year; and 80% of the patients they see are discharged back into their community within a day, a direct reversal of the 20% of patients who were able to go home under the previous system.

“All just geography”

Despite the obvious differences between MHEC’s setting (their ‘patch’ is the size of Germany but has only 320,000 residents), and our urban south London area where almost three million people reside in an area a fraction of the size, when Martin shared his story the similarities were immediately apparent. In London we have a diverse population who speak an estimated 250 languages, requiring a need for numerous cultural sensitivities; the MHEC team have a large aboriginal population – almost 40% of their mental health in-patients identify as aboriginal.

Patients in New South Wales were having to travel miles away from their families to receive acute mental health care; we too have examples of this happening in acute mental health care in the UK, and while the distances in Australia may be greater, the impact on the patient and their family will be the same. The Australian health system also faces an increasing demand for acute mental services against a backdrop of challenges with staff recruitment; turns out, Julia Roberts had it right in Pretty Woman; it is “all just geography”.

The question our roundtable guests discussed cut to the heart of the complexities of digital transformation: if we have so much in common, why, over a decade later, are we still not embracing virtual consultations in the same way that they are? Distance and cost were MHEC’s burning platform, pushing them to make changes ten years ago that other services are only just catching up with. We seemingly are yet to find our burning platform, despite the pressures on our services and the progress being made in many areas.

As our roundtable participants moved the discussion on to the inevitable complexities of implementation, many of the usual barriers made an appearance; procurement, interoperability, money, time. But a few more situation-specific ones also livened the debate; what are the implications for information governance? How do you prevent reprisals of misdiagnosis? How do you train people to deliver virtual care? How do you ensure that changing a pathway won’t affect patient safety? How do you empower your teams to step outside their role? How do you get buy-in from all the organisations needed to deliver the change?

The need for systems to talk

For Martin – and MHEC – all the barriers to change raised were not only a stark reminder of how far they have come, but also how much work is still to be done. We delved into the extensive stakeholder engagement the MHEC team undertook (they visited all the GP practises in person because face-to-face meetings achieved better buy in from clinicians – an irony that wasn’t wasted on them), and listened to how the accountability process was redefined, before unveiling a key area of distinction between our two situations; how joined up their IT systems had become. A steely silence answered Martin’s assumption that we’d managed to fix the interoperability of medical records in the 20 years since he’d served at Homerton, Enfield and the Royal Free. Sadly, Martin, we have not but it is high on the agenda of NHSX and others so perhaps this time we will.

And therein lies part of the problem. The collaborative nature required to implement the MHEC system between mental health, emergency departments, General Practitioners, community mental health teams and even the police (they have supplied local police with digital tablets to ensure they can get the virtual consultations to people in their own homes, not just the local emergency department) is a testament to the power of joined-up care systems, but working together was undoubtedly made simpler by the support of a joined up technology system, something the various LHRCEs are still working hard to crack.

From the discussion, it became clear however that no one issue of technology, procurement, change management, organisational boundaries or geography on its own poses enough of a barrier, but the cumulative effect of them all risks putting off too many commissioners, clinicians and managers from implementing digital transformation. The risk made all the more terrifying by the fear that it might go wrong and that safety could be compromised.

Martin was incredibly open and forthcoming about the fact that MHEC is not yet perfect. When they started the technology didn’t work; not everyone was bought in to the system; it was not – and still isn’t – an overnight success, but none of that mattered. They were trying something new that, at its heart, was trying to improve patient care and support emergency services to deliver better support to people in a mental health crisis, whilst also saving the overall system money. It is clear that really innovative organisations are willing to tolerate failure and see it as an opportunity for learning and doing things even better. Whilst we can’t tolerate failure in terms of compromising patient safety, it does feel that perhaps sometimes this fear also stops us from implementing proven innovations. So why does the fact that something won’t work perfectly first-time round make us in the NHS feel so uncomfortable? Perhaps this is our inherent fear of failure?

We heard from some present about the fabulous work they are doing to implement similar technology and different ways of working, however, to really impact care we need to do this at scale. And to achieve anything at scale, risks will have to be taken. Perhaps our burning platform is just not hot enough. Yet.

About the author
Breid O’Brien leads HIN’s digital consultancy function. She has extensive improvement and digital transformation experience supported by a clinical and operational management background in acute care within the UK and Australia. She has supported major system level change and has a strong track record of delivering complex programmes of work whilst supporting collaboration across varied teams and organisations. With a Masters in Nursing, an MSc in Healthcare Informatics and as an IHI improvement Advisor, Breid is especially interested in the people, process and technology interface.

Innovating in Urgent and Emergency Care

Innovating in Urgent and Emergency Care

Join our Urgent and Emergency Care Innovation Exchange event exploring the solutions that could transform urgent and emergency care services.

Briefing for innovators to apply to pitch at the event

The Health Innovation Network, and DigitalHealth.London Accelerator are hosting an Innovation Exchange showcase event on Urgent and Emergency Care on Tuesday 31st October 9.30 to 12pm.

We would like to showcase innovations that meet the challenges within London’s urgent and emergency care for example:

• Improving patient flow through emergency departments
• Supporting clinical decision systems
• User experience – directing patients to the most appropriate service
• Predicting emergency admissions
• Alternative models of care eg. Virtual / remote clinical support
• Quicker access to diagnostics / point of care testing
• Real time information for clinicians

We’re looking for a diverse range of digital technologies that are operational in emergency care clinical services to attend the event to pitch their innovations. The event will enable discussions with commissioners, providers and innovators on the potential for technology to address the challenges and pressures on all urgent and emergency care.

On the day we will start with our guest speaker from Healthy London Partnership to give a policy perspective and presentation from the Chief Clinical Information Officer from London Ambulance Service.

Following these presentations there will be an opportunity for innovators to provide a short pitch (3 minutes) to the audience on how they may adopt your innovation(s) in their organisations and participate in our world café session to discuss your solution in more detail. We are aiming to generate warm leads and fruitful follow on discussions by curating a receptive audience for urgent and emergency care innovations.

In order to select the best innovators to showcase, we are asking innovators to complete this short application form, to allow the Health Innovation Network and stakeholders to select an interesting and varied agenda. Please complete the attached for and return to us by 20th September 2019 at 5pm.

Successful applicants will be expected to complete a short registration form immediately, and 3 months after the event for us to quantify the impact of the event on generating new leads and conversations.

Timeline

• Application submission deadline: 20th September 2019
• Notifications to successful applicants: 30th September 2019
• Urgent and Emergency Care Innovation Exchange event: 31st October 2019

Applications to pitch are now closed please email  steph.mckenzie@nhs.net to register for the upcoming event on 31st October 2019.

 

20 New digital health care innovators set to transform the NHS

20 New digital health care innovators set to transform the NHS

Today the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator announce the 20 new digital health care innovators to be supported by the 2019-20 Accelerator programme at a launch event in central London.  Now in its fourth year, the Accelerator supports small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) accelerate the adoption of digital health innovations into the NHS each year. The programme gives innovators improved access to the wealth of world-class research, medical technology, and resources London has to offer and supports NHS providers and commissioners find, and adopt, the new technologies.

Each of the 20 innovators selected for this year’s programme directly support the ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan published earlier this year. The programme will support these SMEs to develop and deploy solutions to some of the most pressing challenges facing the NHS.

The exciting innovations include a technology that helps clinicians plan and rehearse heart surgery by using patient scans and mechanics to predict the behaviour of a device once inside a patient (Oxford Heartbeat).  Another is a mobile app that tracks the number of steps walked by an individual and incentivises them to walk more through reward points that can be redeemed for products, goods and services (Sweatcoin). Cutting edge technology such as sensors, machine learning and home devices have been brought together in a digital solution to help carers monitor the health and well-being of elderly patients better at home (Birdie).

Anna King, Commercial Director of the Health Innovation Network said: “The Academic Health Science Networks (AHSN) have a unique role helping companies navigating the health system and supporting the NHS in the adoption of value-enhancing innovations. The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme helps deliver both improved patient care through the use of digital innovations, but also economic growth through the supporting the best innovative companies. The track record of previous participants in the programme has been fantastic, and we are excited about introducing these new innovations to the NHS.”

Sara Nelson, Programme Director, DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, said: “I feel really proud of the Accelerator and its achievements over the last three years. Today is another step forward and represents how both sides – innovators and the NHS – are coming together more and more to solve the very real challenges NHS organisations face every day. Digital technologies are not only creating new opportunities to change things for patients, they are also creating new opportunities to make things better for staff, and the wider system. We all share the ultimate objective of making our NHS sustainable and I am looking forward to helping the next set of digital innovators make this a reality.”

Theo Blackwell, Chief Digital Officer for London, said: “I am delighted to support the Accelerator and this latest intake of digital health companies looking to bring their innovations to Londoners. The programme’s work ensures that London is at the forefront of digital innovation and is vital to building a future where its citizens benefit from the latest technologies to support their health.”

Tara Donnelly, Chief Digital Officer, NHSX said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator is part of a long- overdue digital revolution in the NHS. We must create a system whereby healthtech innovators are supported and can really feel our commitment to them and their ground-breaking work. This programme does just that, plus it supports the NHS and social care to make the most of the digital opportunity.”

Success stories the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator in previous years include; a product from MIRA Rehab that turns physiotherapy exercises into video games that can be customised to individual patients’ needs. This has been particularly useful for children and orthopaedic patients who often do not achieve their rehabilitative potential because they do not complete their exercises. As a result of its engagement with the Accelerator, MIRA Rehab is now working with Great Ormond Street NHS Foundation Trust, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, and Royal National Orthopaedic NHS Trust. It is now available in 10 NHS organisations across the country.

Infinity Health developed an app to improve patient flow in hospitals. It provides clinical staff with an improved experience from the traditional paper-based processes for requesting, tracking, and prioritising porter requests. The app is now used in Northwick Park Hospital in Harrow, one of the busiest Emergency Departments in the country. It has helped save over 10,000 hours of staff time.

The work of DigitalHealth.London Accelerator companies has resulted in almost £76 million in savings for the NHS, with just over a third of this (£24.8 million) credited to the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator’s support – based on information self-reported by companies involved. Some of these savings are made in efficiency gains, for example finding more efficient ways of supporting patients to manage their own health conditions, whilst others may help reduce inappropriate urgent care attendances by providing easier access to GP services.

There have been an estimated 22.2 million opportunities for patients to benefit from new technologies supported by the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator.

For more information please contact hin.southlondon@nhs.net.

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder

Funding Opportunity

Eligibility

Website

Deadline

Innovation Loans for SMEs: apply for funding

Following the success of the Innovation Loans pilot programme throughout 2018, the programme is being extended to the end of 2020 with an additional £25 million available for business innovation projects in 2 further competitions. micro, small and medium-sized organisations may apply See Website 11 September 2019

EPSRC


Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments.
Academic (researchers) See Website No closing date

British Heart Foundation

Research Project Grants Academic (post-doctoral researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

British Heart Foundation

New Horizons Grants Academic (senior researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

Nesta

An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK. Companies/ Entrepreneurs See Website Ongoing

NIHR

Invention for Innovation Academic, NHS and Companies See Website Ongoing

Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT)

Bright Ideas Fund NHS (GSTT Trust) See Website Ongoing

Horizon 2020

Horizon 2020 is the largest ever European funding programme for research and innovation. It aims to:

  • ensure that Europe produces world-class science
  • remove barriers to innovation 
  • make it easier for public and private sectors to innovate together.
Companies See Website Ongoing

RYSE + DigitalHealth.London Accelerator

Following last year’s successful partnership with RYSE Asset Management LLP, DigitalHealth.London is collaborating again to support digital health companies to grow their business with investment of £250k – £5m. Early stage companies  See Website 30 August 2019

ITV’s Dr Zoe Williams Joins Alison Barnes for VLCD Event

ITV’s Dr Zoe Williams Joins Alison Barnes for VLCD Event

Last week the Health Innovation Network’s diabetes team hosted an event at St Thomas’s Hospital to speak to dieticians, GPs and other clinical professionals about the role of Very Low-Calorie Diets (VLCD) in putting Type 2 Diabetes in remission. 

The event brought together experts including; Dr Zoe Williams resident GP on ITV’s ‘This Morning’, Alison Barnes Research Dietitian for the Diabetes Remission Clinical Trial (DIRECT) as well as Alastair Duncan, Principal Dietitian at Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospital. We heard some impactful stories from patients who trailed the diet. Some spoke candidly on the positive difference it has had made to their quality of life, as well as the difficulties they faced, especially during specific times of the year. 

Social and cultural events involving food were one of the difficulties discussed. Eid, Christmas and weddings were all flagged as being possible obstacles on these diets. Results showed that patients felt a sense of anxiety when it came to returning to their normal diets. Dr Rabbani, MD at Sutton GP Service Ltd also flagged that lifestyle changes can be incredibly hard, so simply changing your eating habits after a substantial time will not happen overnight. 

The event gave rise to the complexities many people have in their relationship with food. Although positive results were seen for the individuals who used VLCD diets speaking at the event, the message was clear that it is important to take into account the many barriers that exist for others.  

For more information on future events like this, sign-up to our newsletter today: http://bit.ly/HINSignUp  

Further information

To learn more about Allied Health Professional programmes in this area, visit the NHS England website.

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South London’s first transgender sexual health service, funded by HIN receives positive feedback from patients

South London’s first transgender sexual health service, funded by HIN receives positive feedback from patients

Last year King’s College Hospital in Camberwell were awarded funding from the Health Innovation Network to open the first sexual health service in south London for trans people. The clinic celebrated it’s formal launch at King’s on Friday 13 July 2019. Since its opening the new trans service at has already had a positive impact on trans people’s lives, giving people easier access to an informed, respectful, dedicated local service in South London.

In partnership with cliniQ, the new service offers a range of health and wellbeing initiatives to meet the needs of trans people. Services include STI testing and treatment; contraception; counselling; cervical screening; hormone testing, hormone injection and advice; sexual assault support; hate crime support; housing advice; and the PrEP Impact Trial.

The service includes a counsellor; a support worker; a nurse; and a doctor. Although the focus of the service is sexual health, it has adopted a holistic approach and works with other relevant services such as primary care, mental health services and social services.

In addition to clinical and support services, King’s is also developing and delivering a range of training materials for healthcare professionals to raise awareness, knowledge and skills in relation to trans health.

Since the clinic opened the clinic has seen over 50 people for a range of issues including sexual health testing; contraception; hormone level monitoring; hormone injections; advice and counselling. The feedback from patients so far has been really positive.

Evren Filgate, a 24-year-old service user, said: “With long waiting times for the specialist Gender Clinics, a lack of training for GPs and hospitals, and a general lack of understanding of trans healthcare, combined with difficulties accessing healthcare CliniQ at King’s as a walk-in clinic accessible to all trans people provides dignified, non-judgemental care for myself and my friends. Without CliniQ I would not have been able to access life-saving care many times over. Many trans people I have spoken to agree that CliniQ is absolutely vital to trans people in south London and its importance cannot be overstated.”

Dr Killian Quinn, Clinical Lead for Sexual Health Services at King’s, said: “I’m really proud that King’s and cliniQ are delivering this service here in South London. The service has the expertise of both sexual health professionals and trans community leaders to address not only any medical and sexual health needs but also psychosocial health inequalities of trans people.”

Dr Michael Brady, Consultant Sexual Health and HIV at King’s and National Advisor for LGBT Health, NHS England, said: “Trans and non-binary people experience unacceptable health inequalities and poorer experience of healthcare in general. Services like this one delivered by cliniQ and King’s provide essential clinical care and support as well as training for healthcare professionals and the opportunity to raise awareness locally of trans health issues.”

Michelle Ross, Founder of cliniQ, said: “cliniQ at King’s is fundamental in establishing trans and non-binary people’s health services in South London and further afield. At cliniQ sexual health and HIV are central to our services, as are holistic health and wellbeing. Trans people are disproportionately affected by all health issues – it is cliniQ’s reason for beginning to change these inequalities.”

Dr Natasha Curran, Medical Director, Health Innovation Network, said: “This clinic is a first for South London and fantastic example of genuine co-design in the NHS.  The Health Innovation Network are delighted to have helped open this important service that offers an innovative, holistic approach to the specific needs of trans people. We aim to fund and support healthcare innovation that improves people’s lives and helps staff deliver the best possible care, the innovation grant we awarded the clinic, will help it do just that.”

Cllr Ed Davie, Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care, London Borough of Lambeth, said:

“This new service is something we’re very proud to deliver alongside King’s and the Health Innovation Network. I’m certain that it will make a positive difference to the lives of trans people in Lambeth and across South London, providing a whole range of health support in a safe, comfortable environment. This will increase learning and awareness, both for health professionals in the issues that trans people and non-binary people face, and also for trans and non-binary people themselves around sexual health and wellbeing, helping us reduce inequality and ensure that everyone can access the support that is right for them. From our black mental health commission to leading the Do It London HIV campaign, Lambeth Council has a proud record of working with our minority communities to improve health and I’m very pleased this new trans clinic builds on this offer.”

Cllr Evelyn Akoto, Southwark Council Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Public Health, said: “I am hugely proud that the first dedicated health centre for trans, non-binary and gender diverse people is coming to South London. Everyone has a right to access healthcare safely and with dignity, however trans people can face unique barriers to certain services. Anything that we can do to help people lead healthier and happier lives is a step in the right direction. I am sure that this will have a positive impact on the lives of many people who live in Southwark and South London.”

Mayor Damien Egan, London Borough of Lewisham, said: “I am delighted that cliniQ has officially launched today. In Lewisham we proudly support the trans community, including the principle of self-definition. As the first sexual health service in south London for trans people we know that clinicQ will make a real difference for Lewisham residents, by making sure they receive the advice and care they need. This is a vital service and I am delighted that Lewisham is supporting it. I hope that more clinics will open in the future so that we can continue to support trans people”

The new service is funded by the London Boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham and the Health Innovation Network (South London) and is run every Tuesday from 4pm – 7pm at the Caldecot Centre at King’s College Hospital.

 

Innovative NHS exercise classes launch in Teddington to help local people with knee and hip pain

Innovative NHS exercise classes launch in Teddington to help local people with knee and hip pain

The ESCAPE-pain exercise programme for people living with knee and/or hip pain, also known as osteoarthritis (OA), will launch for the first time in the borough of Richmond-upon-Thames next week (8 July 2019). The programme is widely available across England, operating in over 190 sites. Classes are run in a variety of locations from hospital physiotherapy departments to leisure centres and gyms, from church halls to community centres. ESCAPE-pain is an evidence-based group rehabilitation programme (12 sessions twice weekly for six weeks). It improves participants’ function by integrating exercise, education, and self-management strategies to dispel inappropriate health beliefs, alter behaviour, and encourage regular physical activity.

Thousands of people living in Richmond could be eligible to attend the programme. Official figures estimate that in Richmond, 73,645 people have osteoarthritis in the knees and/or hips.

James Pain, Clinical Specialist in Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy at Teddington Memorial Hospital, said: “We see a large number of people with chronic pain in their knees and/or hips every week at Teddington Memorial Hospital.

“ESCAPE-pain is an innovative NHS programme that teaches people how to deal with their pain through simple exercises to help them live healthier and more active lives. The programme is clinically proven to help people feel better and keep moving. I am delighted that we are able to support residents in the borough of Richmond by setting up this fantastic programme.”

The ESCAPE-pain programme was developed by Professor Mike Hurley and is hosted by the Health Innovation Network. Nationwide scale-up is currently being supported by NHS England and Versus Arthritis.

Pictured above: Gillian Morgan, participating in an ESCAPE-pain class in south London being delivered by Diane Friday, Active Lifestyles Programme Manager.

Professor Mike Hurley, Clinical Director MSK Programme at the Health Innovation Network said: “ESCAPE-pain is now being delivered in every region in the country, including several sites in other parts of London. We are delighted it is starting to be delivered in Teddington.

“I hope that the many local people currently suffering with knee and hip pain find this innovative approach as helpful in making their lives better as people in many other parts of the country do. We look forward to them sharing their experiences with us.”

Gillian Morgan, 66 years old, from south London attended ESCAPE-pain courses in Beckenham, south London last year, said: “Before ESCAPE-pain my knees felt fragile, it would feel like they would give out, so although I could walk, my knees would click or give way when I was walking and I certainly couldn’t get the bus because I didn’t feel stable enough to do it. Now I can run for a bus.”

“I would recommend ESCAPE-pain absolutely to anybody who’s suffering with osteoarthritis because it’s just learning to help yourself and doing the remedial exercises that you don’t think could possibly help you, but they do.”

To be considered for ESCAPE-pain in Richmond, you will need to be referred to physiotherapy for an assessment and be registered with a Richmond GP.

Find your local ESCAPE-pain class here and read the full article here.

South London NHS Innovation and Research Priorities Highlighted

South London NHS Innovation and Research Priorities Highlighted

Following a national consultation of key local health stakeholders conducted across all regions in England, the NHS innovation and research priorities for south London have been outlined in the regional statement from the Health Innovation Network.

The views of clinical leaders, managers and directors within each Academic Health Science Networks (AHSN) region were collected through qualitative interviews with 61 people and a questionnaire which received more than 250 responses in total. The survey was conducted by ComRes, an independent research agency.

This widespread consultation was commissioned by the AHSN Network, in partnership with NHS England and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to inform the publication of a statement of local NHS research and innovation needs for each AHSN region – as one of the actions in the NHS England and NIHR joint paper on ‘12 actions to support research in the NHS’.

Whilst there were some differences in regional priorities, common themes emerged which reflected both south London priorities and wider challenges facing the NHS and align with the priorities of the NHS Long Term Plan. These include:

  • a need for innovation and research addressing  workforce challenges
  • delivery of mental health services and providing care for patients with mental health needs, particularly in children and young people
  • integrating services to provide effective care for patients with complex needs – including  multimorbidity and frailty
  • use of digital and artificial intelligence technology

The National Survey Full Report outlines the findings from the consultation with local health and social care stakeholders across England. It includes a detailed analysis of the innovation and research needs at local level across all AHSNs.

Natasha Curran, Medical Director, Health Innovation Network said: “Thank you to the south London stakeholders for their invaluable contributions. The statement provides a really useful starting point to build discussions with wider stakeholders, patients and others in the community to address the priorities outlined.”

Professor Gary Ford, Chief Executive of Oxford AHSN, led the AHSNs input into the survey. He said: “The survey provides important information on the research and innovation needs of the NHS which will shape future work of AHSNs and the research community”.

ESCAPE-pain: “The transformation has been huge as a result of this class”

ESCAPE-pain: “The transformation has been huge as a result of this class”

Chris, who was diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the hip, was immobile and on medication when he was referred to the ESCAPE-pain programme. Hear about the life changing effect that attending the classes has had on him.

ESCAPE-pan is the gold standard, evidence-based group rehabilitation programme for people with knee and/or hip pain, also known as osteoarthritis.

Over 9 million people in the UK estimated to have osteoarthritis, and many of them live with chronic pain and take medication as a result of the condition. Theaward-winning exercise rehabilitation programme, ESCAPE-pain,integrates simple education, self-management and coping strategies, with an exercise regimen individualised for each person.It also aims help people understand their condition better, and to realise that exercise is a safe and effective self-management strategy, that can be used to reduce knee and hip pain, and the physical and psychosocial effects of joint pain.

The ESCAPE-pain programme, which is delivered in over 190 sites nationally, was originated by Professor Mike Hurley, Clinical Director for the Musculoskeletal theme at the Health Innovation Network. To find out more about ESCAPE-pain, read here.

Or if you are an exercise instructor or clinician in south London, interested in becoming an ESCAPE-pain trainer? Why not sign up to our training session today.

References
https://www.versusarthritis.org/about-arthritis/conditions/arthritis/

The first cohort of LGBTQ+ Project Dare graduate!

The first cohort of LGBTQ+ Project Dare graduate!

Last week, Project Dare celebrated the graduation of their first LGBTQ+ cohort with a showcase event that saw students performing excerpts of the work they have created on the subject of positive body image.

LGBTQ+ Project Dare, funded by the Health Innovation Network, is a 12-week practical, creative and educational course that encourages individuals to participate in dares as a way of approaching wellbeing, encouraging confidence. It gets students to step out of their comfort zones in a safe space amongst their peers whilst also providing support for those within the LGBTQ+ community, for whom resources are often limited.

Ursula Joy, Lead Facilitator said: “LGBTQIA+ Dare Sessions allow participants a judgement free safe space in which to express themselves creatively, and address head on the issues that affect LGBTQIA+ bodies.”

“Within the gay community, there can be immense pressure to look certain ways. The need to conform in a society dominated by social media and marketing where binary bodies are under the spotlight and non-conformity is monetised.”

“LGBTQIA+ Dares not only gives participants a voice but challenges them to step out of their comfort zones, make positive and accepting connections to who they are, forge meaningful relationships and make changes in their lives.”

“Drama is the perfect vehicle for personal growth and the final showcase provides a sense of ownership, empowerment, and achievement.”

Josh Brewster, Project Manager, Health Innovation Network said:“The Innovation Grants are crucial for projects like “Project Dare” that would be unlikely to receive support from the usual commissioning sources. The grants are a fantastic opportunity to fund projects that can make a huge different to people and do so in ways that are very unique. They act as a great springboard for success allowing the projects to prove their value and hopefully get adopted elsewhere.”

Project Dare ran this course in collaboration with the Recovery College and all of the participants were recruited from the College’s database of service users. The Recovery College offers recovery and wellbeing courses with co-production at the heart of everything they do.

Think Diabetes Report calls on London employers to better support staff living with diabetes

Think Diabetes Report calls on London employers to better support staff living with diabetes

London employers are being urged to ‘Think Diabetes’ in the workplace in a new report published by the Health Innovation Network. Figures in the report show a major gap in the number of with people living with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes attending free educational programmes to help them learn about their condition and live healthier lives.

There were more than 3.1 million people  diagnosed with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes  in England in 2017-18 and it is estimated that in London over 671,000 people of working age (over the age of 16) have  either Type 1 or Type 2  diabetes. But the Think Diabetes Report shows less than 8 percent of eligible Londoners living with Type 2 diabetes are attending these courses (this figure is less than 9 percent of eligible people across England).

Reasons for people not attending these courses are varied, but previous reports have cited ‘time off work’ as one of the key issues.  Given the potential for employers to support staff with health, the Think Diabetes report makes a series of recommendations on how employers can help support their staff to take advantage of the education opportunities available to them, or even provide education for staff themselves.

To celebrate the launch of the report, we partnered with Diabetes  UK  to deliver the Think Diabetes Summit. The event brought employers, diabetes experts and patients together, to discuss ways in which organisations can support their staff including; running education sessions in the workplace, sharing new digital approaches to education with their teams so staff can complete these courses online and by making sure staff are supported to take time off work for education to help them live with a long-term health condition.

Diabetes is covered by the Equality Act 2010 as a long-term condition that has significant impact on individuals’  lives and employers are therefore obliged to make reasonable adjustments, although these adjustments are not defined. The case for employers adjusting their policies and supporting individuals to attend structured education is overwhelming.

The event was chaired by Dr Neel  Basudev, Diabetes Clinical Director of the Health Innovation Network and GP in Lambeth, who said:

“Employers have huge influence over the lives of the working population and a unique opportunity to help with what is arguably the greatest challenge facing our nation’s health: diabetes.

“There are more ways for people to access vital education about diabetes than ever before, with many parts of the NHS innovating with digital courses and new approaches to offer support. We now need to raise awareness of what’s on offer and remove as many barriers as we can. Workplace barriers are some of the simplest to address and changes can be made to support staff that will increase the health and productivity of the workplace.”

As well as hearing from diabetes experts and representatives from the organisations who were case studies in the report, Deputy Leader of the Labour Party and Shadow Culture Minister Tom Watson MP shared how he self-managed his own type 2 diabetes into remission. A passionate advocate for helping people learn to self-manage, he said: 

“By changing my diet and lifestyle I’ve put my Type 2 diabetes into remission. I feel fitter, faster, and healthier than ever before and this has given me a new mission to help others get healthy.

“Supporting people who live with diabetes is a major challenge facing our society, and one in which we all have a part to play. Employers in particular can play a key role in supporting people in their journey to learn more about their condition, and how best to manage it.

“It is time employers think differently about diabetes in the workplace and the Think Diabetes Summit is bringing together key leaders from across businesses and organisations to do just that.”

The Think Diabetes Summit was attended by organisations that collectively employ thousands of Londoners. TechUK attended the event and their CEO Julian David said: “techUK represents the companies and technologies that are defining today the world that we will live in tomorrow. I feel passionately that our members should also be leaders in supporting and developing the workforce for the future.  Diabetes is an increasing problem in our society and employers should be engaging with innovative ways to help support staff living with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes to better manage their condition.”

Download the Think Diabetes Report and Toolkit here.

Innovation Exchange – the digital innovations transforming the NHS

Innovation Exchange – the digital innovations transforming the NHS

As part of London Tech Week, Health Innovation Network and DigitalHealth.London Accelerator partnered with DAC Beachcroft and NHS Improvement to deliver an Innovation Exchange evening at the Wallbrook Building.

At the event, NHS leaders from across the health system, came together to learn about the innovative digital solutions that are already helping trusts across the country to tackle current NHS workforce challenges and discuss the challenges of implementation, interoperability and cost. Attendees included; HR directors from Acute & Mental Health Trusts around London, Borough Councils as well as representatives from national bodies such as Care Quality Commission CQC, NHS England & NHS Improvement.

The overwhelming response to the information shared was encouraging, but also very timely. The recently published Interim People Plan highlighted the important role that digital will have to play to help the NHS combat the current workforce crisis, particularly in relation to productivity.

But digital transformation can be difficult when you consider challenges with costs, planning and implementation. As well as showcasing some of the solutions available right now, discussions were centred around what cultural change is needed to find and uptake digital solutions. A key point that was raised is interoperability – new innovations must be able to work seamlessly with existing systems for compliance and adoption to happen.

And as is always the case with any discussion around digital, the question of how automating services will affect patient care was raised. Workforce shortages are a fact of the NHS and while not all services can be automated, using AI to support the workforce in areas such as rotas and training will help clinicians spend more time on delivering better patient care.

As well as looking to the future, a series of innovations that are already transforming NHS services, by saving money, time and supporting staff, were presented on the night:

  • Locum’s Nest – a temporary staffing management platform to simply connects doctors to locum work in healthcare organisations. The App matches doctors to short-staffed shifts available within preferred hospitals across a chosen geographic area.
  • Virti – Virtual and augmented reality platform for workforce training that transport staff users into realistic environments and uses computer vision to assess how they respond to stress to reduce anxiety and improve skills. Used for mental health staff to provide simulation training.
  • Establishment Genie – An NICE-endorsed digital workforce planning tool for health and social care staff. The Genie collects staffing data for instant reporting at individual unit, organisation and group level, providing analysis and benchmarking capability not previously available to assure and support professional judgement in identifying safe and appropriate staffing levels.
  • Infinity – a secure collaboration and task management solution that integrates with existing health information systems and transforms the way healthcare professionals coordinate their activity and access critical information.
  • Lantum – is a total workforce platform transforming how healthcare organisations and professionals connect. Their next generation AI-powered software helps staffing managers to better manage their rotas, fill shift gaps & drastically reduces reliance & money spent on temporary staffing agencies.
  • Truu – is a digital identity platform that enables secure, digital, remote pre-employment checks. Truu’s approach uses direct connections between doctors’ and hospitals and the sharing of verified credentials that meets regulatory standards and is inherently GDPR-compliant.
  • CoachBot – is the world’s first digital team coach and is designed to help managers get their team performing at the top of their game. It’s built on the principle that technology should make us interact offline more, not less. CoachBot makes it easy for teams to regularly have conversations about the things that matter – it’s not about teaching managers how to be good managers, it’s about making it easy for managers to do the things that great managers do.
  • SilverCloud Health – is a platform that’s provides clinically effective and easily accessible digital programmes that reduce barriers to engagement for those wanting emotional or mental health support. Life changing for users, especially those who feel unable to access help due to stigma, personal situation, location, or service wait times;
  • Q doctor – uses secure video consulting as a workforce solution; to allow NHS organisations to delocalise their workforce across their geography, putting the right clinician in the right place at the right time. Video consulting decreases workforce travel time between sites and in the community and introducing more flexible working.
  • Induction App – is a secure communications toolkit that quickly connects healthcare professionals to the people and information they need to work more efficiently and effectively in hospitals. The functions include a directory of bleep and extension numbers, document and guideline sharing, secure messaging and departmental workspaces. Induction is used by over half of all NHS doctors and is used by healthcare professionals in most NHS trusts.

“It was incredible to see so many well presented company pitches for innovative solutions to tackle the workforce crisis in the NHS. Overall the responses were positive and no doubt many of the conversations that started here will help mitigate the workforce crisis and result in improvements to the NHS using digital technology in the future.” Lesley Soden, Head of Innovation, Health Innovation Network.

To meet the gaps in NHS workforce, the adoption and spread of innovation across the NHS must be accelerated. Increasing awareness of the products that are currently available and their successes in different trusts is the first step to ensuring a robust NHS workforce fit for the future.

Got a digital innovation project or pilot that could improve the lives of people within NHS south London but would benefit from some additional funding? Then make sure you apply for the Innovation Grants 2019.

Homeward Bound

Homeward Bound Grant Winner Kim Nurse

Winning films selected as part of Homeward Bound Project

Homeward Bound, an innovative project in which patients, carers and clinicians from across Kingston Hospital Trust worked with local students to create short films that explain the transfer home process for patients who have had prolonged hospital stays, has confirmed it will begin showcasing two of the final films to patients, family and carers.

The Homeward Bound project, funded by the Health Innovation Network, brought together film students from the University of the Creative Arts, along with the hospital’s staff and volunteers, to create a series of original animated short films. The films explained some of the issues and practicalities involved in the discharge process from hospital back home, which can often be an anxious process for people who have experienced prolonged hospital stays. The films were then entered into a competition and the winning two films will now be shown to hundreds of patients and carers across the hospital and wider community as part of the patient discharge process.

The first winning film, the Panel’s Choice, was selected a special screening of the shortlisted films at the VIP Screen in Kingston’s Odeon Cinema by an expert judging panel that included, Jan Ives, Patient and Carer Partner, Bob Suppiah, Director of Promotions and Partnerships at SkySian Bates, Chairman of Kingston Hospital, Sophie Beard, University of the Arts Senior Lecturer, Dr Kim Nurse, NHS England and the Health and Innovation Network’s Director of Digital Transformation, Breid O’Brien.

Breid said: “We’re delighted to have supported this fantastic project that is a great example of real co-production in action; hospital staff working alongside students, carers and patients and everyone involved having an important and equal role to play.

“I think all involved should be incredibly proud of what they managed to achieve with the Homeward Bound project. Ultimately what these films will do is make the transition from hospital to home that bit easier for patients, families and their carers, at a what is a very difficult time in their lives.”

The second winning film, the People’s Choice, was voted on by patients and hospital staff online and was announced at the Kingston Hospital Improvement Seminar. Both winning films uniquely provide information to patients to feel more in control of their departure and return back home more quickly and comfortably.

Both films will soon be shown on television screens around the hospital and made available online too.

Patients set to benefit from world-leading innovations on the NHS

Patients set to benefit from world-leading innovations on the NHS

3D heart modelling to rapidly diagnose coronary disease and an advanced blood test which can cut the time it takes to rule-out a heart attack by 75% are among a raft of technological innovations being introduced for patients across the NHS.

New innovations have already reached 300,000 patients, and speaking at the Reform digital health conference in London today, NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens will announce that over 400,000 more will benefit this year from new tests, procedures and treatments as part of the Long Term Plan.

This includes pregnant women getting a new pre-eclampsia test, and cluster headache sufferers getting access to a handheld gadget which uses low-levels of electric current to reduce pain.

The new treatments and tests are being delivered as part of the NHS’ Innovation and Technology Payment programme, which is fast-tracking the roll-out of latest technology across the country, building on progress in the past two years.

The programme’s latest innovations include a cutting-edge blood test which can detect changes in protein levels in blood, allowing emergency doctors to rule out a heart attack within three hours – nine hours faster than the current rate – meaning people get quicker treatment and avoid admission to hospital.

NHS England has also confirmed that funding for 10 other new tests and treatments as part of the programme – including a computer programme that creates a digital 3D model of the heart and avoids the need for invasive procedures – will be extended, allowing more patients to benefit.

From this year, thousands of pregnant women will be offered a test on the NHS which can help rule-out pre-eclampsia – a serious condition linked to labour complications, acute pain and vision problems – and allow women either to get extra care faster, or avoid the need for further hospital trips during pregnancy.

Simon Stevens, chief executive of NHS England, said: “From improving care for pregnant women to using digital modelling to assess heart conditions and new tests to prevent unnecessary hospitalisations for suspected heart attacks, the NHS is taking action to ensure patients have access to the very best modern technologies. It’s heartening to see the NHS grasping with both hands these rapidly advancing medical innovations.”

Plans to speed up the uptake of proven, cutting-edge treatments is being overseen by the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC), a joint NHS, government and industry effort which aims to make the NHS the world’s most innovation-friendly health system.

Dr Sam Roberts, chief executive of the Accelerated Access Collaborative and director of innovation and life sciences for NHS England, said: “This programme has been amazingly successful at getting new tests and treatments to patients, with over 300,000 patients benefitting already, and this year we have another great selection of proven innovations.

“We will build on this success with our commitments set out in the Long Term Plan, to support the latest advances and make it easier for even more patients to benefit from world-class technology.”

As set out in the Long Term Plan, the NHS will introduce a new funding mandate for proven health tech products so the NHS can adopt new, cost saving innovations as easily as it already introduces new clinically and cost effective medicines.

Innovations being supported include:

  • Placental growth factor (PIGF) based test: a blood test to help rule‑out pre‑eclampsia in women suspected to have the condition who are between 20 weeks and 34 weeks plus 6 days of gestation, alongside standard clinical assessment. Read more here.
  • High sensitivity troponin test: a blood test that when combined with clinical judgement can help rapidly rule-out heart attacks. Read more here.
  • Gammacore: a hand-held device that delivers mild electrical stimulation to the vagus nerve to block the pain signals that cause cluster headaches. Read more here.
  • SpaceOAR: a hydrogel injected between the prostate and rectum prior to radiotherapy, that temporarily creates a space between them so that the radiation dose to the rectum can be minimised, reducing complications like rectal pain, bleeding and diarrhoea. Read more here.

Lord Darzi, chair of the Accelerated Access Collaborative, said:“As Chair of the AAC, I am delighted that four of the seven technology areas currently receiving AAC support have been selected for this NHS programme.

“This is a vital step in helping patients receive rapid access to the best, proven innovations being developed in our world-class health system.”

This is the third year of the drive to identify and fast track specific innovations into the NHS, which has already benefitted over 300,000 patients across the NHS.

The NHS’ own innovation agencies – the 15 Academic Health Science Networks across England – will take direct responsibility for accelerating uptake locally.

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder

Funding Opportunity

Eligibility

Website

Deadline

RYSE Asset Management LLP + DigitalHealth.London Accelerator 

Support for digital health companies to grow their business. We are looking for innovative companies that are addressing patient demand through technology, with a view to funding those with significant potential. Early stage companies See Website 5 August, get your application in before Friday 19 July to be in with a chance of a FREE 1:1 Advisory Session with a DigitalHealth.London Senior Team Member. 

EPSRC


Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments.
Academic (researchers) See Website No closing date

British Heart Foundation

Research Project Grants Academic (post-doctoral researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

British Heart Foundation

New Horizons Grants Academic (senior researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

Nesta

An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK. Companies/ Entrepreneurs See Website Ongoing

NIHR

Invention for Innovation Academic, NHS and Companies See Website Ongoing

Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT)

Bright Ideas Fund NHS (GSTT Trust) See Website Ongoing

Horizon 2020

Horizon 2020 is the largest ever European funding programme for research and innovation. It aims to:

  • ensure that Europe produces world-class science
  • remove barriers to innovation 
  • make it easier for public and private sectors to innovate together.
Companies See Website Ongoing

Extra £9 million for NHS to treat people at high risk of stroke

Extra £9 million for NHS to treat people at high risk of stroke

NHS England has announced they are to invest £9 million to help find and treat people with an irregular heart rhythm that puts them at high risk of stroke.

Experts estimate that more than 147,000 people in England with an irregular heart rhythm that puts them at risk of stroke are not receiving appropriate treatment. Making sure people with this condition are given optimal treatment – usually blood-thinning medication to prevent clots – can more than halve their risk of having a stroke.

The £9 million investment will fund specialists to work with GPs and advise them on the best treatment for people identified as having irregular heart rhythms (known as atrial fibrillation). This new scheme, successfully trialled in South London, will treat more than 18,000 people and is expected to prevent up to 700 strokes and save at least 200 lives.

The programme will run across 23 areas of the country with the highest rates of the condition receiving funding for specialist clinical pharmacists and nurses to help identify people who could benefit from medication.

This new approach is being supported by the 15 NHS and care innovation bodies, the Academic Health Science Networks.

Professor Gary Ford, Chief Executive of Oxford AHSN, Consultant Stroke Physician at Oxford University Hospitals and Professor of Stroke Medicine at the University of Oxford said:

“Atrial Fibrillation accounts for 20% of all strokes. We know that providing the best treatment for patients with this condition reduces stroke risk but at the moment half of all people with this irregular heart rhythm who suffer a stroke have not received optimal treatment.

“Our work in South London has shown that when specialists are made available to advise GPs, more people at risk of stroke are identified and treated, helping to avoid strokes and save lives”

NHS England Medical Director, Stephen Powis, said:

“Tackling heart disease and stroke is a top priority in the NHS Long Term Plan, which will save thousands of lives by better diagnosis and treatment for people with killer conditions.

“By targeting help at those people most at risk of illness, and training up specialist clinicians, the NHS in England will help families across the country avoid the pain and loss associated with stroke.

“Not only is stroke one of the biggest killers in our country, but it leads to life-changing and often devastating long-term harm for many others, so by spotting the risks early, the NHS will not only prevent serious harm to the people affected, but avoid the need for aftercare which puts additional pressure on the health service.”

“Treating people who have atrial fibrillation with anticoagulation drugs, reduces the risk of stroke by two-thirds yet only half of those with the condition who go on to suffer a stroke had been prescribed them.

“People who are poorer, from black or ethnic minority backgrounds or other disadvantaged groups are more likely to be among those who go undiagnosed and untreated.”

Helen Williams, Clinical Advisor to the AHSN Network’s atrial fibrillation programme said:

“We piloted this approach in Lambeth and Southwark, utilising expert clinical pharmacists from the local acute trust who worked with GPs to review patients with atrial fibrillation on a case by case basis, offering advice on optimum treatment. As a result, we have seen a substantial increase in the number of patients with atrial fibrillation prescribed anticoagulant therapy and an associated reduction in atrial fibrillation related strokes.

“We are delighted that NHS England are investing in rolling out this model to a further 23 clinical commissioning groups so that more patients across England can benefit.”

Find out more about what AHSNs are doing to prevent and treat atrial fibrillation.

Background

The clinical commissioning groups to receive funding are those parts of the country with high levels of deprivation and/or high levels of untreated AF, which can cause stroke. They are:

NHS Barnet CCG
NHS Bradford City CCG
NHS Brent CCG
NHS Camden CCG
NHS Chorley And South Ribble CCG
NHS Croydon CCG
NHS Enfield CCG
NHS Great Yarmouth And Waveney CCG
NHS Greenwich CCG
NHS Haringey CCG
NHS Harrow CCG
NHS Isle of Wight CCG
NHS Islington CCG
NHS Kingston CCG
NHS Leeds CCG
NHS Morecambe Bay CCG
NHS North Cumbria CCG
NHS North Tyneside CCG
NHS Northumberland CCG
NHS Portsmouth CCG
NHS South Kent Coast CCG
NHS Thanet CCG
NHS West Lancashire CCG

Digital innovation in cardiac rehabilitation services; the time has come…

Digital innovation in cardiac rehabilitation services; the time has come…

Health Innovation Network partnered with the British Heart Foundation and the London Cardiac Rehabilitation Network to create an Innovation Exchange event where clinicans and innovators could discuss how digital solutions can help improve uptake of cardiac rehabilitation services, and the result was overwhelmingly positive, says Anna King.

More and more, I am approached by NHS clinical leaders looking for digital solutions to help them transform their services. Gone are the days when clinicians rejected the idea that patients would use technology. Gone are the days when they believed technology could not improve outcomes. And gone are the days when clinicians worried about their job being taken by a robot. Now instead, clinicians are asking whenthey will get the digital tools they need to improve outcomes, efficiency and patient care. Well, at least this was the fantastic response we had from the London Cardiac Rehabilitation Network members’ recent Innovation Exchange event.

At the event, the challenges that cardiac services are facing were clearly set out by key opinion leaders Sally Hinton (BACPR Executive Director) and Patrick Doherty (Director of the National Audit for Cardiac Rehabilitation), along with patient representative Rob Elvins. The challenges they all raised were uptake and access. But they also highlighted the benefits of improving outcomes and uptake in this area too.

The NHS Long Term Plan (LTP) sets cardiac rehabilitation out as an intervention that can save lives, improve quality of life and reduce hospital readmissions. It’s also recommended by NICE. However, uptake of cardiac services currently varies widely across England and only 52% of the 121,500 eligible patients per year are taking up offers of cardiac rehabilitation. If we can increase this uptake to 85% by 2028, as set out by the LTP, it will prevent 23,000 premature deaths and 50,000 acute admissions over 10 years. Furthermore, it would make the NHS amongst the best in Europe. This suggests to me there is plenty of scope to improve services to the standard we all aspire to.

Many of the cardiac rehabilitation services present at the Innovation Exchange believed – as I do – that digital solutions are the only way they will manage to significantly increase uptake with current resources. Especially as uptake is lower in women, the young and those for whom it is their only health condition; a group of patients who might find digital or hybrid rehabilitation opportunities very attractive.

Many innovators applied to contribute to the event, which demonstrates the high level of interest and potential in this area. The selected innovators proved that many of these valuable digital solutions are not only already available, but they are comprehensive rehab programmes that are well-evidenced and could bolt onto existing services right now. There were also innovators with systems in other similar areas of care, that were willing to co-develop solutions for cardiac rehab. It was fantastic to see the energy that came from get all the innovators both from services and those with potential solutions together. I am looking forward to seeing how the plans made develop over the coming months.

The Exchange closed with the panel discussing the way ahead for cardiac rehabilitation and the technology they would implement. Patrick Doherty summed discussions up by saying that you could no longer consider that you run a good cardiac rehab service unless you offered digital and home-based options for patients too. I don’t think anyone will have left the event without thinking the time has come for all cardiac rehabilitation services to have digital components, and many more of London’s cardiac rehabilitation services will be taking those important steps towards implementation.

Find out more about the companies who participated in the Innovation Exchange:

The showcasing innovators:

The exhibiting innovators:

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Digital innovation in cardiac rehabilitation essential to boost attendance rates

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Digital is helping us tackle healthcare inequalities, but the real issues are deeper and run system-wide

About the author
Anna has been Commercial Director at the Health Innovation Network since July 2013. Prior to her current role Anna was the Commercial Programme Director at the London Commercial Support Unit (Commissioning Support for London, NHS London and NHS Trust Development Authority).

Topol Review highlights potential of digital technologies to address the big healthcare challenges

Topol Review highlights potential of digital technologies to address the big healthcare challenges

Written by Anna King, Commercial Director at Health Innovation Network.

It is not often that an independent review for a UK Secretary of State gets held up for a book launch, but such is the case when you ask a world-eminent, California-based cardiologist to review the changes required in the NHS healthcare workforce to ensure preparation for the technological future.

Dr Eric Topol, probably best known for his book, The Patient will see you now, published his long awaited The Topol Review: Preparing the healthcare workforce to deliver the digital future last month. The report highlights how digital healthcare technologies have the potential to address the big healthcare challenges as well as tackle increasing costs. The report observes that innovation will “increasingly shift the balance of care in the NHS towards more centralised highly specialised care and decentralised less specialist care”. This shift in the pattern of need and services is aligned with much of the HIN’s work and our focus on out-of-hospital care. Flatteringly, Topol also supports the ambition that the UK has the potential to become a world leader in such healthcare innovations. This is particularly exciting to hear given the work the HIN has been doing locally with DigitalHealth.London building upon local strengths in clinical care, research, education and business to boost London as a world leader in digital health.

However, Topol also offers words of caution for those impatient for new digital healthcare technologies to reach their full potential. As he observed, “it can take up to 10 years to realise cost savings, investment in IT systems, hardware, software and connectivity, as well as the training of healthcare staff and the public”.  The potential benefits of genomics moving beyond rare diseases and cancers is a good example of this. Allowing better prevention and management of conditions that could reduce costs and disease burden in the 10 to 20 year timeframe will require the NHS to have completed the “digitisation and integration of health and care records if the full benefits of digital medicine (earlier diagnosis, personalised care and treatment) are going to be realised”.

Whilst much of the report focused on the longer-term revolutionary technologies, there was also an acknowledgement that some data-driven technologies can and are being deployed today. Particularly, those with the aim of improving ease of access or remote monitoring, designed to reduce unplanned hospital admissions and decrease non-attendance rates. This is an area that we see many solutions being developed by the innovators of the NHS Innovation and DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programmes. Companies like Transforming Systems and Dr Doctor use data to improve access and system efficiency, and companies like Lumeon and Health Navigator helping improve individual patient pathways. Topol is also refreshingly realistic about the issues we see many innovators face because of “uneven NHS data quality, gaps in information governance and lack of expertise”. Potential enablers to overcome the barriers to adoption, he suggests, include: an information governance framework, and guidance to support the evaluation, and purchasing of AI products.

In the report, genomics, digital medicine and artificial intelligence were all seen to have a major potential impact on patient care, but it also showed how digital will help improve the lives of the NHS workforce. There was a helpful introduction to a number of emerging technologies, including low-cost sequencing technology, telemedicine, smartphone apps, biosensors for remote diagnosis and monitoring, speech recognition and automated image interpretation, that are seen to be particularly important for the healthcare workers.

Topol also finally puts to rest dated concerns that technology exists to replace people working in healthcare. The report clearly responds to this fear confirming that technology is intended to ‘augment’ healthcare professionals, rather than replace; releasing more time to care for direct patient care. Whilst, some professions will be more affected than others,Topol finds that the ‘impact on patient outcomes should in all cases be positive’.

At the HIN we have been supporting the development of the NHS workforce as a necessary part of the journey to digital transformation. I was pleased that Health Education England’s involvement in the Topol Report means that training and education will be modernised, as it is still very dated both in its methods of delivery and syllabus. However, this education should not focus solely on just educating new NHS staff members – but we should also be digitally upskilling the workforce we have now, and at every level. And herein lies the real complexity of the digital revolution. What Topol finds undeniable is that the roles of healthcare staff will change and new skills will be required, and it is good to see Health Education England responding to this challenge – although, it was shocking to learn that radiologist are still be taught how to develop traditional x-ray films, despite them rarely being used in the NHS!

Learning from previous changes, implementation will require investment in people as well as technology. It bodes well for the exciting wide-ranging programmes of the AHSNs, that support a learning environment, understand the enablers of change and create a culture of innovation. Programmes of ours like the Graduates Into Health Fast Track IM&T programme and the DigitalHealth.London NHS Digital Pioneers programme will play an important role in developing an agile and empowered workforce to facilitate the introduction of the new these new technologies. The report is clear that it is an exciting time for the NHS to benefit and capitalise on technological advances, and the AHSNs are well place to support this. The observation that ‘within 20 years, 90% of all jobs in the NHS will require some element of digital skills, illustrates the need for digital education revolution perfectly, even if it did raise the question what would the 10% be doing!

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New report maps the MedTech landscape for innovators in England

Top Tips for Innovators

Going digital: What it’s like for less tech savvy communities to use healthcare services

About the author
Anna has been Commercial Director at the Health Innovation Network since July 2013. Prior to her current role Anna was the Commercial Programme Director at the London Commercial Support Unit (Commissioning Support for London, NHS London and NHS Trust Development Authority).

New report maps the MedTech landscape for innovators in England

New report maps the MedTech landscape for innovators in England

The NHS spends approximately £6 billion a year on medical technology, also known as MedTech, such as medical devices, equipment and digital tools. It is an industry that accounts for over 86,000 jobs in the UK, almost a third of which are within small companies, and supports an additional 24,600 service and supply roles.

A new report from the AHSN Network provides an essential guide for companies looking to successfully develop and roll out innovations in this complex and diverse industry, focused around the MedTech innovation pathway. It includes a foreword by Piers Ricketts, Chief Executive of Eastern AHSN and Vice Chair of the AHSN Network.

The MedTech Landscape Review will be launched formally at an event to be held jointly with one of our partners, the Association of British HealthTech Industries (ABHI), on 20 March and introduced by Piers.

In the meantime, the report is available for download here, featuring case studies, statistics and practical advice for navigating each step of the MedTech Innovation pathway.

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder

Funding Opportunity

Eligibility

Website

Deadline

EPSRC

Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments. Academic (researchers) See Website No closing date

EPSRC

Healthcare Technologies discipline hopping call.  Enable researchers to develop new skills and build new collaborations with other disciplines and end users so they can address the key health challenges identified in the Healthcare Technologies strategy. Academic

(researchers)

See Website No closing date

British Heart Foundation

Research Project Grants Academic (post-doctoral researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

British Heart Foundation

New Horizons Grants Academic

(senior researcher)

See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

Nesta

An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK Companies/ Entrepreneurs See Website Ongoing

King’s College London

King’s Health Accelerator 2018 Call Open Academic

NHS

(KHP Research Staff)

See Website No deadline given but should apply as soon as possible.

NIHR

Invention for Innovation Academic

NHS

Companies

See Website Ongoing

Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT)

Bright Ideas Fund NHS

(GSTT Trust)

See Website Ongoing

Horizon 2020

Horizon 2020 is the largest ever European funding programme for research and innovation.

It aims to:

·       ensure that Europe produces world-class science

·       remove barriers to innovation

·       make it easier for public and private sectors to innovate together

Companies See Website Ongoing

Funding for projects to improve the identification and management of atrial fibrillation

The BMS-Pfizer Alliance is partnering with the AHSN Network to fund projects that aim to improve the identification and management of atrial fibrillation. Healthcare organisations across the country are invited to apply for a share of the £250,000 funding. Healthcare organisations See Website 17 May 2019

SME support to evaluate innovative medical technologies: Round 4

SMEs can apply for a share of £1.5 million to support the evaluation of innovative medical devices, diagnostics and regulated digital health products.   Companies  Seen Website 3 July 2019, 12:00pm

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder

Funding Opportunity

Eligibility

Website

Deadline

EPSRC

Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments.

 

Academic (researchers) See Website No closing date

EPSRC

Healthcare Technologies discipline hopping call.  Enable researchers to develop new skills and build new collaborations with other disciplines and end users so they can address the key health challenges identified in the Healthcare Technologies strategy.

 

Academic(researchers) See Website No closing date

British Heart Foundation

Research Project Grants Academic (post-doctoral researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

British Heart Foundation

New Horizons Grants Academic(senior researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

Nesta

An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK

 

Companies/ Entrepreneurs See Website Ongoing

King’s College London

King’s Health Accelerator 2018 Call Open AcademicNHS(KHP Research Staff) See Website No deadline given but should apply as soon as possible.

NIHR

Invention for Innovation AcademicNHSCompanies See Website Ongoing

Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT)

Bright Ideas Fund NHS(GSTT Trust) See Website Ongoing

Innovate UK

Multiple funding opportunities. Companies(SME based in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland) See Website N/A

Biomedical Catalyst 2019 round 1: feasibility and primer awards

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £3 million to explore and evaluate the commercial potential of a scientific idea to solve a healthcare challenge. Companies(SME based in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland) See Website 3 April 2019, 12.00pm

Biomedical Catalyst 2019 round 1: early and late stage awards

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £7 million to explore and evaluate the commercial potential of a scientific idea to solve a healthcare challenge. Companies(SME based in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland) See Website 3 April 2019, 12.00pm

NHS Trust first in the country to translate ‘ESCAPE-pain’ chronic joint pain programme into Gujarati

NHS Trust first in the country to translate ‘ESCAPE-pain’ chronic joint pain programme into Gujarati

Rapidly expanding ESCAPE-pain programme, born in south London, has now been translated into Gujarati. Hear all about it in this exclusive video produced by our AHSN colleagues at Imperial College Health Partners.


Physiotherapists at London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust have successfully translated a rehabilitation programme for patients with chronic knee and hip pain into Gujarati for the first time.

Previously only available in English, ESCAPE-pain is a programme for people with chronic knee and hip pain that runs over six weeks combining educational self-management and coping strategies with an exercise regimen for each patient.

The physiotherapy team at Northwick Park Hospital (NPH) identified that a significant proportion of their local community were missing out on attending the programme because one of the criteria is for participants to have a good level of English.

Through truly living their Trust’s HEART value of Equality, the team used their expertise to overcome these language barriers. Karsh Patel and Arti Inamadar translated the sessions, allowing members of the local Gujarati community to take part and benefit from ESCAPE-pain. Further sessions are planned in Northwick Park Hospital and have the potential to be used in other locations across the country.

Tanya Aptowitzer, Musculoskeletal Therapy Lead from NPH, said: “We’re immensely proud of our ethnically diverse workforce and our physios who have gone above and beyond to meet the needs of our local Gujarati speaking population. Through their initiative and the support of the Trust we have been able to help patients that would have otherwise been excluded.”

A local patient Aruna on completing the course said: “Having this translated in Gujarati has helped us to properly understand as our English isn’t that good. ESCAPE-pain has given us knowledge about what we should do to reduce pain and in a group we can all do it together.”

ESCAPE-pain is one of the seven programmes developed regionally which have been selected for national adoption and spread across the Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) 2018-2020. Imperial College Health Partners (ICHP), as North West London’s AHSN, have been supporting local NHS Trusts and CCGs in this work.

Piers Milner, Innovation Advisor from ICHP, said: “For innovation in the NHS to thrive it needs to be shaped and its adoption supported by local communities. The team, through translating ESCAPE-pain into Gujarati, have shown the key role that frontline staff have in shaping innovative programmes to meet the needs for their local patients.”

Professor Mike Hurley, originator of the ESCAPE-pain programme, said: “It’s really great to see our programme translated into other languages so that as many people as possible benefit. The pain caused by arthritis has no language barriers, so interventions that can help shouldn’t be hindered by language either. It is wonderful to see that the local physiotherapists have responded to the needs of their local community and taken the time to translate the programme into Gujarati. We know getting to non-English speaking populations is difficult and I’m sure this will encourage more people to take part and benefit from the programme.”

NHS Long Term Plan; a welcome focus on digital, prevention and tech

Dr with laptop and smartphone

NHS Long Term Plan; a welcome focus on digital, prevention and tech

With its focus on digital, prevention and out of hospital care, the NHS Long Term Plan matches key work stream priorities of both the AHSN Network and the Health Innovation Network, says Acting Chief Executive Zoe Lelliott.

We very much welcome the NHS Long Term Plan (LTP), published on 7 January, recognising its strong focus on areas of current priority for the HIN. These include service innovation, digital transformation as well as prevention and out of hospital care.

The AHSNs have been asked to consider how they best support their local sustainability and transformation partnership and emergent integrated care systems, as they shape local implementation plans over the coming weeks. We believe that we can do this in a number of ways:

  • Through specific expertise and experience  (e.g. digital health, diabetes transformation, medicines optimisation, care homes and prevention)
  • Through practical support for the implementation of innovations which improve patient care and efficiency
  • By connecting the system, through our extensive, cross-sector networks and relationships (health and care, third sector, academia and industry)

As a network, we have been reflecting on what the Long Term Plan means for some of our collective themes in this series of blogs.

Innovation and research for better health: five key opportunities
UCL Partners Managing Director Dr Charlie Davie thinks we need to focus on five key areas and sets them out.

Ten years from now: What to expect from the NHS Long Term Plan

In this joint blog, Yinka Makinde, Programme Director for DigitalHealth.London and Jenny Thomas, Programme Director for DigitalHealth.London Accelerator explore how technology will play a central role in realising the Long Term Plan.

Good news for prevention of stroke in the Long Term Plan

Dr Liz Mear, Chief Executive of the Innovation Agency and a trustee of the Stroke Association, focuses on the plan’s emphasis on stroke prevention.

2019 sees focus on investment in life sciences and economic growth

Mike Hannay, Managing Director of East Midlands Academic Health Science Network, examines investment in life sciences.

Achieving goals of Long Term Plan will only come through innovation

Oxford Academic Health Science Network Chief Executive Gary Ford emphasised the need for innovation.

Artificial intelligence – is the future here?

Big data and computing power is at the heart of this blog by Kent Surrey Sussex AHSN Network Managing Director Guy Boersma.

Digital is a valuable tool for prevention – and so rightly it’s at the heart of the long term plan

Tara Donnelly, HIN Accountable Officer and interim NHS England Chief Digital Officer, blogs on the emphasis on digital to enable the shift to prevention.

For the AHSN Network’s response to the long term plan, click here

Evaluation into ‘Red Bag’ Hospital Transfer Pathway

Key learnings for Red Bag emergency transfer pathway revealed in report

The ‘Red Bag’ Hospital Transfer Pathway, which was highlighted in the recent NHS Long Term Plan, is now running across south London. But how effective is it? The HIN has produced this evaluation report which explores the impact and stakeholder experiences of implementing the pathway within three south London boroughs.

A new evaluation report has found that vital communication between paramedic crews, care home staff and hospital clinicians has been improved by the Red Bag Pathway when all measures were adhered to, but there are still a series of barriers to best practice to overcome.

The study, which included survey responses, interviews with hospital clinicians and paramedics, and a focus group with care home managers, found that the majority of care homes are using the Red Bag as intended. Conducted by the Health Innovation Network, the report said that improvements need to be made at both ends of the pathway to ensure it is adhered to and the benefits are fully realised.

Pioneered by Sutton Homes of Care Vanguard, the pathway ensures vital medical information, such as current medical condition and medicines regime, travels with the care home resident in a specially-designed red bag when they make emergency hospital visits.

Over two-thirds of the 90 survey responses from care homes, ambulance crews and hospital clinicians in Kingston, Richmond and Lambeth, stated that the Red Bag had improved communication between care homes and hospitals and made the handover to ambulance crews smoother.

Over half of care home managers believed the pathway had improved the transfer process for residents and both ambulance and hospital staff stated that the two forms most helpful in the Red Bag documentation were the ‘Do Not Attempt Resuscitation’ form, for older people making decisions about what happens towards the end of their life and the Alzheimer’s Society’s ‘This Is Me’ form to help healthcare professionals know more about people living with dementia.

As well as highlighting some of the positive effects the pathway has had on emergency hospitals for care home residents, the study also flags some of the challenges faced in implementing the transfer pathway. These included finding that, on some occasions, standardised patient information was either missing or incomplete when residents were transferred to hospital, that medical discharge information was not always sent with the patient and that locating and retrieving bags that had become lost in hospital transfers was particularly difficult.

Responses also indicated that both care homes and hospitals faced challenges with successfully promoting the pathway in the face of high turnover of staff and during the busy winter period. The report found that when the pathway was not adhered to – either in the care home or hospital setting – this caused practical difficulties and could result in despondency and frustration amongst professionals

The challenges highlighted have led to some wider learnings for practitioners. Don Shenker, who led the Red Bag project for the HIN, believes there are five key tips that can be taken away from the study:
1. When preparing the Red Bag in the care home, double check all the documentation is filled in properly
2. When receiving the Red Bag in the ambulance or hospital, read through the documentation
3. When transferring patients to different wards in hospital, check the Red Bag and documentation is with the patient
4. When discharging the resident back to the care home, make sure the Red Bag and discharge documentation accompanies the resident
5. When receiving the resident back in the home, update the care plan records.

Effective implementation of the Red Bag Pathway will contribute toward the Enhanced Health in Care Homes (EHCH) model as set out in the recent NHS Long Term Plan.

The report launched at a HIN sharing event, attended by staff from all parts of the Pathway, designed to ensure the complexities of implementing the pathway and opportunities for improvement are discussed more widely so all parties can work together to keep improving the use of the Red Bag.

Zoe Lelliott, Deputy Chief Executive for the Health Innovation Network, said:
“Our work is all about promoting innovation in the NHS and across the whole care system. The Red Bag is a successful innovation born in Sutton and recently extended across the whole of south London, but this study shows that there are still challenges and a focus on careful implementation is needed to maximise the benefits.
“True joined up work with our members and partners in south London is making a real difference to people’s lives and I want to thank all the health and care staff who have worked so hard to adopt the Red Bag Pathway in their areas.”

Berenice Constable, Head of Nursing for Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“Frail care home residents are at their most vulnerable when transferred in an emergency to hospital. It’s vital that the latest state of their health is communicated to all clinicians from ambulance crews to hospital staff so quicker decisions can be made over their care.
“It’s also a moment when they might lose important personal possessions from hearing aids to glasses, so the Red Bag Pathway is a simple innovation that, when followed fully, ensures the safest possible transfer as well as the fastest discharge.”
“This report shows that the Red Bag is really making a difference and improving the care of some of our most vulnerable residents.”

Evaluation of the Hospital Transfer ‘Red Bag’ Pathway in South London

Download the report here.

Health Innovation Network sign up to join the #EquallyWellUK charter

Health Innovation Network sign up to join the #EquallyWellUK charter

In December 2018, Health Innovation Network became the first AHSN to commit to the #EquallyWellUK charter. With more than 100 organisations already signed up, including NHS England and Public Health England, the charter is one of three initiatives that seeks to promote and support collaborative action to improve physical health among people with a mental illness by signing individual organisational pledges.

Pictured above L-R: acting CEO, Zoe Lelliott; Head of Mental Health, Aileen Jackson; and Clinical Director for Mental Health, Dr Muj Husain.

For Health Innovation Network, signing this charter means that all our clinical themes have committed to ensuring that their work improves outcomes for all, including those with mental illness. A great example of a project that already does this is our work in improving the detection of Atrial Fibrillation in people with serious mental illness that you can read about here. We are also committed to introducing providers and commissioners to promising digital solutions, and evaluating their impact.

Read more about our Mental Health theme here and about the pledge here.

Tara Donnelly to take on interim Chief Digital Officer role for NHS England

Tara Donnelly to take on interim Chief Digital Officer role for NHS England

Tara Donnelly, Chief Executive of the Health Innovation Network, has been appointed as the interim Chief Digital Officer to spearhead the mission to empower patients through the use of digital technology.

The Chief Digital Officer leads the strategy for citizen facing digital services for NHS England and is SRO for the “Empower the Person” pillar of the NHS’s Digital Transformation programme. “Empower the Person” is one of the most ambitious digital healthcare transformation portfolios in the world and includes ten key programmes: the NHS website NHS.uk, the NHS App, NHS Online (verification of citizen identity), Apps & Wearables, Personal Health Record & Standards, Digital Child Health, Digital Maternity, Widening Digital Participation, GP Online and Patient access to WiFi.

Tara will continue as the Health Innovation Network’s Accountable Officer and Board Member during the interim period. Zoe Lelliott, currently the Deputy Chief Executive for theHealth Innovation Network, will take on the role of acting Chief Executive.

Tara Donnelly said:

“I’m delighted to be joining NHS England to help deliver the fantastic digital projects set out in the Long Term Plan. The NHS has stepped up its efforts on digital over the last few years and I’m excited at the opportunity to be involved in the next stage of work. The “Empower the Person” programme is one of the most ambitious digital healthcare transformation plans in the world, including the NHS App and its potential to transform the way citizens across the country access and interact with the NHS. I’m looking forward to joining the team that’s working hard to make these ambitions a reality.”

Zoe Lelliott said:

“We have an ambitious and creative portfolio of projects here at the Health Innovation Network, designed to support NHS and care staff to improve patients’ outcomes and experience, through innovation. Taking on the leadership of this work as the CEO is an exciting prospect, and I look forward to working with our team, our members and our partners in this new role over coming months.”

Read more from our Leadership Team and about what we do in our Annual Review.

Photo credit: Emile Holba

Consultation on a patient safety strategy for the NHS

Consultation on a patient safety strategy for the NHS

There’s a chance to have your say on ambitious proposals to halve avoidable patient harm.

NHS Improvement is consulting on a new, national patient safety strategy until 15 February. The strategy is being developed alongside the NHS Long Term Plan and aims to support the NHS to be the safest healthcare system in the world.

The document sets out how some types of avoidable harm to patients can be halved over the next five years in areas such as medication errors and ‘Never Events’, alongside developing a ‘just culture’ for the NHS where frontline staff are supported to speak up when errors occur.

A consultation document and survey is available online. The final strategy will be published in the spring.

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder

Opportunity

Eligibility

Website

Deadline

EPSRC

Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments.  Academic (researchers) See Website No closing date

EPSRC

Healthcare Technologies discipline hopping call.  Enable researchers to develop new skills and build new collaborations with other disciplines and end users so they can address the key health challenges identified in the Healthcare Technologies strategy. Academic (researchers) See Website No closing date

British Heart Foundation

Research Project Grants Academic (post-doctoral researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

British Heart Foundation

New Horizons Grants Academic (senior researcher) See Website No closing date – applications to be submitted when ready.

Nesta

An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK Companies/ Entrepreneurs See Website Ongoing

King’s College London

King’s Health Accelerator 2018 Call Open Academic NHS (KHP Research Staff) See Website No deadline given but should apply as soon as possible.

NIHR

Invention for Innovation Academic NHSCompanies See Website Ongoing

Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT)

Bright Ideas Fund NHS (GSTT Trust) See Website Ongoing

Innovate UK

SMEs can apply for a share of £1.5 million to support the evaluation of innovative medical devices, diagnostics and regulated digital health products. Companies (SME based in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland) See Website 30 January 2019

SME support to evaluate innovative medical technologies: round 3

 

SMEs can apply for a share of £1.5 million to support the evaluation of innovative medical devices, diagnostics and regulated digital health products.

 

Companies (SME based in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland) See Website 30 January 2019, 12:00pm

 

Innovate UK

Multiple funding opportunities. Companies (SME based in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland) See Website N/A

It’s time to put digital diabetes tools in the real world, with south London leading the way

It’s time to put digital diabetes tools in the real world, with south London leading the way

Laura Semple, Programme Director for Diabetes and Stroke Prevention, on person-centred care planning and digital in the real world.

When it comes to diabetes, we all know that the statistics are both enormous and increasing. In south London alone there are an estimated 230,000 people living with diabetes. Nationally, the NHS spends £14 billion a year treating people with diabetes. That’s an astonishing £1.5 million every hour. And, as many of us working in diabetes treatment and Type 2 diabetes prevention in south London know, the vast majority of this is not on preventative care that will reap future benefits. It is spent treating complications, many of which are preventable if people receive the right support during the early stages of the condition.

It’s against this backdrop that we set about working with our partners, led by the South West London Health and Care Partnership, earlier this year to bid to test a new model of support for people living with Type 2 diabetes. The full team includes South London NHS commissioners and clinicians, Healum, Citizen UK, Year of Care partnerships and Oviva. Just this week, we’ve found out that our innovative bid to co-design a new support system with patients, maximising the opportunities from digital to support behaviour change as we do, has been successful and will receive more than £500,000 of public funding over 18 months.

One option would have been to try and find a digital substitute for the current way of working, insert it into local care plans and call it self-management. But too often, substituting with digital tools ticks boxes without radically improving care, because the digital tool doesn’t work seamlessly within the wider system of care.

We believe digital health tools workbest when there is a partnership between the patient, their GP and where necessary a team of specialist clinicians or coaches supervising results, coaching and encouraging. When this mix is in place the results can be powerful – weight loss, healthy blood glucose levels, increased physical activity, improved self-care because people feel more empowered and self-confident. These are just some of our biggest goals. And of course all of these bring savings in the longer term to the NHS thanks to fewer complications.

For that reason, the new south London Test Bed focuses just as much on training and care planning with primary care professionals as it does on new digital solutions. Our intervention starts by working with the wonderful Year of Care Partnerships to train GP practices to use a truly collaborative approach to care and support planning with their patients. New, co-designed care plans will be available to patients via an app and accessible to professionals across all care settings.

At this point, when the training and planning has taken place, digital can shine. Following their appointment patients receive an innovative video that presents their personal health data in an intriguing animation, explaining their individual results and what these mean for them as an individual. Using the app, patients will then access a wide range of support and resources to help them reach their goals, including with the helping hand of a dietitian coach from Oviva.

This fully integrated approach, that works with EMIS, considers the needs of primary care professionals as well as the needs of patients, right from the off. It’s not using digital as a simple substitute but placing digital as part of a wider mix in real world clinical settings.

We hope that by testing this model we’ll break down existing barriers to ‘self-management’ and show the power of brilliantly supported self-management. At its core, our aim is simple – real, lasting improvements to the lives of people living with Type 2 diabetes in South London, so that they can live the lives they want to lead without their condition getting too much in the way.

Read more about the Test Bed programme here

Professor Mike Hurley, ESCAPE-pain developer nominated for Outstanding Individual of the Year award

HIN’s Professor Mike Hurley nominated for Outstanding Individual of the Year 2018

Professor Mike Hurley, Developer of the ESCAPE-pain programme, has been shortlisted for the Outstanding Individual of the Year award at this year’s Active Training Awards. Vote for him before 26 October 2018.

The Active Training Awards celebrates the success of the activity workforce and the very best of Learning and Development within the sector. Professor Mike Hurley has been nominated as a result of his relentless commitment to the development, implementation and evaluation of ESCAPE-pain, an evidence-based rehabilitation programme for people with chronic joint pain.

Professor Mike Hurley qualified as a physiotherapist in 1985 and obtained his PhD in 1992. Before dedicating his time to ESCAPE-pain, he was a lecturer, reader and professor of phsyiotherapy at King’s College London and a Professor of Rehabilitation Sciences at Kingston & St George’s. He chaired the UK Chartered Society of Physiotherapy’s Research and Clinical Effectiveness Committee, acted as Clinical Advisor to Versus Arthritis (Arthritis Research UK), as well as an advisor to the NICE committee drawing up clinical guidelines for osteoarthritis. He is currently also the research lead for the School of Rehabilitation Sciences.

Vote for Professor Mike Hurley now and follow @ESCAPE_pain on Twitter to follow the nomination. Award winners will be announced on 15 November 2018.

News, blogs and events

May 18, 2020

DigitalHealth.London Accelerator opens for applications

May 6, 2020

Guidance for Care Homes: Suspected Coronavirus Care Pathway

April 30, 2020

ESCAPE-pain resources to support people with chronic joint pain d…

August 2, 2021

DigitalHealth.London Accelerator opens for applications

July 27, 2021

Hospital staff use ‘nudge theory’ to boost health and wellbei…

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder   

Funding Opportunity

 Eligibility 

Deadline

EPSRC Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments.

 

See Website No closing date
Innovation Connect Innovation Connect helps innovators in the health service and industry to realise their ideas and embed them into clinical practice and potential opportunities in international markets.

 

See Website On-going
Kings Health Partners Research and Development Challenge Fund ‘Fast Track’

 

See Website  Email khpresearchoffice@kcl.ac.uk at any time
Cancer Research UK Accelerator Award. This award, encourages cross-institutional collaboration to accelerate translational research. Any research discipline encouraged. See Website No closing date
EPSRC Healthcare Technologies discipline hopping call.  Enable researchers to develop new skills and build new collaborations with other disciplines and end users so they can address the key health challenges identified in the Healthcare Technologies strategy.

 

See Website No closing date
British Heart Foundation Research Project Grants See Website No deadline – submit application when ready
British Heart Foundation New Horizons Grants See Website No deadline – submit application when ready
Nesta An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK See Website Ongoing
King’s College London King’s Health Accelerator 2018 Call Open See Website Should apply as soon as possible (King’s staff Internal only)
NIHIR Invention for Innovation See Website On-going
Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT) Bright Ideas Fund Teams within GSTT with ideas of commercial potential. See website On-going
UCL Enterprise Bright Ideas Awards See Website On-going
NHS England & Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI)  

Diabetes Hothouse

See Website 5 November 2018
NIHIR Digital Technologies to improve health and care See Website 6 November 2018, 1pm

Innovation Awards support next generation of improvements in health & care in south London

Innovation Awards support next generation of improvements in health & care in south London

From group consultations for chronic health management in urban deprived populations to tackling falls by older residents with dementia, Small Grants kickstarts innovative projects in south London.

Twelve projects, including schemes to meet the needs of women with perinatal mental health problems, group consultations for chronic health management and training for volunteers to hold challenging conversations about end of life care, have won funding under South London Small Grants 2018.

The awards were made by the Health Innovation Network working in partnership with Health Education England (HEE). In all there were 120 applications across 45 different organisations that applied for funding.

The aim of the grants is to support innovative practice that can be spread and adopted across the health and social care landscape. The funding also aims to encourage cross-boundary working in areas of research, education and improvement in healthcare services.

In previous years, the Small Grants have enabled people across London to access funding for research and innovation to kickstart novel ideas, using the grant as a springboard to support their potential. This forms a key aspect of the Health Innovations Network’s role as an Innovation Exchange, helping innovators through signposting and supporting the adoption of innovations.

The 12 projects that will receive funding are:
• Kim Nurse, Darzi Fellow, (Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust): A collaborative project with the University of Creative Arts to create a campaign to educate patients, their relatives and staff regarding the risks of deconditioning in hospital

• Emily Symington, GP, (Amersham Vale Training Practice): Group consultations for chronic health management in urban deprived populations in GP practices

• Manasvi Upadhyaya, Consultant Paediatric Surgeon, (Evelina Children’s Hospital): Development of a gastrostomy care package – a quality improvement project

• Vicky Shaw, Clinical Lead, (Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust): A integrated and collaborative approach to Falls (the term that describes older people falling over) training to address high levels of falls amongst residents with dementia in Lewisham Care Homes

• Katherine Bristowe, Herbert Dunhill Lecturer, (King’s College London): ACCESSCare-e: reducing inequalities for LGBT people facing advanced illness and bereavement – an evidence based self-paced online intervention

• Hind Khalifeh, Honorary Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist, (SLAM/KCL): Meeting the needs of women with perinatal mental health problems through partnerships between NHS perinatal mental health services and voluntary sector organisations Home Start and Cocoon

• Ursula Bowerman, Operational Director/Lead Facilitator, (Project Dare/SLAM): The LGBTQ+ Dare Sessions

• Estelle Malcolm, Clinical Psychologist, (NAAAPS/SLAM): Using an appreciative inquiry approach to increase the voice of adults with an autism spectrum condition in shaping psychological therapy services

• Kate Heaps, CEO, (Greenwich & Bexley Hospice): Young Ward Volunteers Scheme

• Michael Brady, Consultant in Sexual Health and HIV, (Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust): Delivering and evaluating a Sexual Health and Well-being service for Trans communities in SE London

• Liz Bryan, Director of Education and Training, (St Christopher’s Hospice): Challenging Conversations: training volunteers to support the frail elderly and those with long-term conditions in the community who want to talk about end of life issues

• Sophie Butler, Higher Trainee in General Adult Psychiatry, (SLAM): Extreme Psychiatry 2.0

Health Innovation Network Chief Executive Tara Donnelly said:
“Great ideas are at the centre of innovation in healthcare but sometimes they need a small amount of money to help them develop. The South London Small Grants have shown to be a great springboard to success with one of our previously supported projects ‘HaMpton’, an app that allows high blood pressure monitoring during pregnancy at home, now on the NHS Innovation Accelerator.
“These 12 winning projects look like being important innovations that could really make a difference to the lives of people in south London and hopefully beyond.”

HEE’s South London Local Director Aurea Jones said:
“South London Small Grants is all about helping develop innovations where there is a funding gap. We had a record number of applications this year and I was really impressed by the quality of these. I’m confident that the winning 12 projects will make a real difference to the lives of patients and their families.

“I look forward to following the progress of these initiatives closely and seeing how they deliver real health improvements.”

Ends
For more information contact the press office on 0207 188 7756
Notes to editors:
• Health Innovation Network is the Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) for south London, one of 15 AHSNs across England. We work across a huge range of health and care services through each of our clinical and innovation themes, to transform care in diabetes, musculoskeletal disease and healthy ageing, to accelerate digital health uptake into the NHS, and we’re passionate about education. The Health Innovation Network acts as a catalyst of change – identifying, adopting and spreading innovation across the health and care system in south London.
• Health Education England (HEE) exists for one reason only: to support the delivery of excellent healthcare and health improvement to the patients and public of England by ensuring that the workforce of today and tomorrow has the right numbers, skills, values and behaviours, at the right time and in the right place.

Thousands of care home residents across south London to benefit from safer emergency hospital visits and faster discharge as novel ‘Red Bag’ scheme expands

Innovative Red Bag

Thousands of care home residents across south London to benefit from safer emergency hospital visits as novel ‘Red Bag’ scheme expands

Novel ‘Red Bag’ ensures thousands care home residents across south London will have safer emergency hospital visits and faster discharge

The ‘Red Bag’ keeps vital medical info and personal belongings safe during emergency hospital visits

Thousands of care home residents will benefit from an innovation designed to make emergency hospital visits safer and speed up discharge after health and care chiefs agreed to extend the innovative Red Bag scheme across the whole of south London.

The news comes on the United Nation’s International Day of Older Persons (1st October) and means older residents enjoy a more personal and seamless health and care service.

Started three years ago Sutton Vanguard’s Hospital Transfer Pathway ‘Red Bag’ ensures key info such as existing medical conditions and other clinical information is communicated and helps ensure residents return to their care home as promptly as possible once hospital treatment is completed.

Developed by NHS and care home staff, the Red Bag has already been adopted across 11 London boroughs and is expected to go live in south London borough Croydon in November. NHS England unveiled a Red Bag scheme toolkit in June to encourage all areas of the country to adopt the scheme.

Care homes across south London, holding more than 13,000 care home beds between them, have committed to taking part in the Red Bag – a simple innovation which ensures records and personal belongings are kept safe when a care home resident is transferred into hospital.

Under the scheme, when a patient is taken into hospital in an emergency they have a Red Bag to take with them. The Red Bag contains:

  •  General health information, including on any existing medical conditions
  •  Medication information so ambulance and hospital staff know immediately what medication they are taking
  •      Personal belongings (such as clothes for day of discharge, glasses, hearing aid, dentures or other items)

The Red Bag also clearly identifies a patient as being a care home resident and provides hospital staff with the information they need to speed up clinical decisions. This means patients can often be discharged sooner which is better both for the residents and for the NHS, as it means individuals are out of hospital more quickly and money is saved. Extended hospital time can be particularly problematic for those with dementia who can deteriorate more rapidly when away from their usual settings.

The bag stays with the patient whilst they are in hospital. When patients are ready to go home, a copy of their discharge summary (which details every aspect of the care they received in hospital) will be placed in the Red Bag so that care home staff have access to this important information when their residents arrive back home.

The Red Bag has been used with care home residents 2,000 times in south London since April 2017 and length of stay in hospital has reduced by on average 2.4 bed days per Red Bag used.

The Red Bag initiative was created by Sutton CCG hosted Sutton Homes of Care, which was a national Vanguard programme to improve care in residential and nursing homes, in partnership with clinicians from Epsom and St Helier University hospitals, Sutton and Merton Community Services, London Ambulance Service and representatives of the care homes.

Since its introduction in Sutton, the Red Bag has also stopped patients losing personal items such as dentures, glasses and hearing aids worth £290,000 in a year.

There are half a million more people aged over 75 than there were in 2010 – and there will be two million more in ten years’ time. They are also spending more years in ill-health than ever before.

Caroline Dinenage, Care Minister, said:

“The Red Bag is a great innovation that helps link up health and care services for older people, so it’s fantastic news that the whole of south London is now committed to using it. Not only is this more efficient – saving valuable resources – but it leads to a much better experience for patients leaving hospital when their treatment has finished. It’s encouraging to see the scheme being rolled out even further across the country as we move towards our ambition of joined up care that is centred around the individual.”

Aditee Naik, Peartree Care Home Manager, said: “Care home residents are at their most vulnerable when they travel in an emergency into hospital. This is why the Red Bag is so important because it ensures all key paperwork, medication and personal items like glasses, slippers and dentures, are handed to ambulance crews by carers and travel with patients to hospital where they are then handed to the doctor.

“Sometimes it’s the personal touch that makes a big difference to patients, especially if they’re elderly, and the Red Bag helps people feel reassured and more at home. It’s great that on United Nations International Day of Older Persons, here across the whole of South London we are celebrating the fact that the Red Bag is helping ensure our older residents and patients have the very best care.”

Jason Morris, London Ambulance Service Clinical Team Leader, who helped develop the Red Bag at Sutton CCG during its national Vanguard status, said:

“The Red Bag standardises the process of handover from a care home and means we can get all the essential information in one go, no matter which home in they’re in.

“We’re delighted this scheme has led to such a wide range of benefits for us, our colleagues in hospitals as well as care home staff. But most importantly, it’s seen improvements in the care of these patients who can go to the hospital with everything they need. We’re even seeing them returning back to the care home quicker.”

Stephanie Watts, NHS Greenwich CCG Commissioning Manager, said: “The Red Bag pathway is a true example of collaboration between health and care agencies. It works well because all the agencies involved in patient transfers from care homes are invested in it.

“Use of the Red Bags has a number of proven benefits which we are already beginning to see, even though it’s only been a few months, including things like increased communication between hospital teams and Care Home staff, shorter stays in hospital and improved quality of information provided to Care Homes when their residents are discharged.”

 

Chris Terrahe, Deputy Director of Nursing at Croydon Health Services NHS Trust, said: “We are delighted to be working alongside our partners in Croydon CCG and local care homes as part of the new Red Bag scheme in the borough. For care home residents arriving at or leaving hospital, it should make things much more efficient because all the vital information about their health will be in one place.”

 

Dr Agnelo Fernandes, Clinical Chair of NHS Croydon CCG and local GP said: “I’m delighted that the Red Bag is being rolled out in Croydon.  We’ve seen that it can really reduce hospital stays for care home residents, ultimately improving their quality of life.”

 

Sarah Blow, Senior Responsible Officer for South West London Health and Care Partnership, said: “We’re incredibly proud of the work being done to improve the health of older people in Sutton by bringing together health and social care providers. Having seen the benefits to patients, we have already rolled out the red bag scheme in other boroughs in south west London, so we’re delighted that this will become a national scheme.”

 

Tara Donnelly, Chief Executive of the Health Innovation Network, said: “Our hospitals provide great care, but no one wants to spend any longer there than they need to and being transferred from a care home to hospital in an emergency can feel traumatic. That’s why the Red Bag is a great example of a simple idea with a big impact.”

 

From the “Mortality Aware” to the “Baby Boomer Boozers”, we all need help to cut through the app…

From the “Mortality Aware” to the “Baby Boomer Boozers”, we all need help to cut through the app…

A new report out today from the International Longevity Centre – UK, Cutting through the App: How can mobile health apps meet their true potential?brings together a whole range of statistics and analysis on the current state of play with health apps. It’s a good read and identifies several health apps that have been proven to reduce unhealthy behaviours.  It’s the latest report to emphasise the potential of digital health. From apps that help tackle the devastating impact of insomnia, to those that make it easier for anxious teenagers to discuss mental health as well as apps to tackle diabetes, the reality is that healthcare can be in your pocket.

The report identifies several population groups in the UK that could benefit the most from effective health behavioural change apps. These include:

  • Nearly 1 million ‘baby boomer boozers’ who are over 60, drink frequently and use a smartphone;
  • 760,000 ‘living fast, dying young’ who are under 40 and smoke, drink frequently, have a smartphone and regularly use the internet;
  • 5.7 million people who ‘just need a push’ and who eat healthy and don’t smoke, but drink moderately and rarely exercise;
  • 2 million ‘connected, healthy and young’ who eat well, exercise frequently and regularly use the internet.

While these groups are found to have a huge opportunity to benefit from health apps, the biggest barrier is the sheer volume of apps out there and the difficulty this adds when it comes to sorting the best from the rest. The NHS apps library is applauded for its approach but complexity for consumers remains.

At AHSNs, we see the way that this complexity can be a barrier for busy clinicians too. With so many digital health innovations to choose from, finding the time to assess and assure them can be incredibly tough. That’s why a key part of the role of AHSNs is to work with the NHS up and down the country to cut through this noise, and find and spread the kind of proven digital innovation that makes a difference.

If you’re a clinician and need help “cutting through the app” you can browse examples of the innovations we support, including apps, here:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/innovation/nia/

https://digitalhealth.london/accelerator/companies/

If you need advice about an innovation, contact us at hin.southlondon@nhs.net

World sepsis day – watch our ‘Spotting sepsis in under 5’s’ film

Share our vital film on World Sepsis Day

Sepsis kills 44,000 each year in England and research shows that identifying it and acting on it quickly can save many lives. Our Spotting sepsis in under 5’s is a a vital tool in spotting the condition in the very young.

Today marks World Sepsis Day, a day to raise awareness about the dangers of sepsis. A life-threatening reaction to infection that can result in tissue damage, organ failure and death.

Spotting the signs of sepsis early and being treated as quickly as possible can lead to a full recovery and gives the patient the best chance of survival, every minute counts with this condition. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FifBm_08RkA

Find out more about the signs and symptoms of sepsis at NHS UK .

And we have some great information on our website telling you all about sepsis, the incidence in South London and worldwide.

Help save lives by raising awareness and being alert to the signs and symptoms.

We have had reports of two lives that have been saved directly because of an intervention prompted by the person viewing the Spotting sepsis in under 5’s film.

NHS England has launched the call for applications for next year’s ITP programme

Andrea_Carter

Second round unveiled for applications for next year’s Innovation and Technology Payment

Launched at Expo 2018, NHS England has developed the Innovation and Technology Payment (ITP) 2019-20.

Delivered with the support of the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs), the ITP aims to deliver on the commitment detailed within the Five Year Forward View – supporting the NHS to adopt innovative market-ready medical devices, diagnostics, digital platforms and technologies which have demonstrated improvement to the quality and efficiency of patient care, by removing financial or procurement barriers to uptake.

The Innovation and Technology Payment (ITP) 2019/20 builds on the Innovation and Technology Tariff (ITT) and ITP 2018/19. It aims to support the NHS in adopting innovation by removing some of the financial or procurement barriers which can inhibit uptake at scale.

It is a competitive process designed to scale up adoption of innovations and technologies that have already proved their clinical effectiveness and are ready for nationwide spread.

The ITP is looking to support medical devices, digital platforms and technologies. The programme is not suitable for pharmaceutical products or research projects.

We aim to select a range of cost effective innovations within our budgetary confines in order to have a wide-reaching impact on patient care, and maximise learning from the programme while fostering culture change.

The ITP programme forms part of a wider set of activities to support innovation in the NHS, led by NHS England with the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs).

The programme will be delivered with the support of the AHSNs.

The ITP is specifically focused on low cost innovations which can deliver significant patient outcomes and savings to the NHS.

Applicants can be from healthcare, academia, commercial or voluntary sectors.

The implementation of any agreed payment mechanism or procurement will be operational from April 2019.

Day-to-day support and reporting will be via NHS England’s Innovation and Research Unit.

Read the application guidance here.

Access the application form here.

Digital Outpatients Online Resource launched

Digital Outpatients Online Resource launched

With more than 100 million outpatient appointments every year, the NHS has a major opportunity to introduce more efficient and patient-focused digital outpatient service. The HIN has worked with DigitalHealth.London and members to take advantage.

Photo above: The Hillingdon digital outpatients team

The Health Innovation Networks new digital outpatients online resource is now available on the DigitalHealth.London website.

This follows our successful digital outpatients collaborative work, with sixteen Trusts using digital technology for virtual consultations and new ways to reduce non-attendance.

Project lead Jess Parsons said: “I’m really pleased we’ve had such great feedback about the Digital Outpatients Collaborative. We worked really hard to support the Trusts and we’ve seen some impressive results which we should continue to build on in the future.”

Help shape the next 10 years of the NHS

Help shape the next 10 years of the NHS

National conversation unveiled to help shape the next 10 years of the NHS.

NHS England has launched a national conversation to help shape the next 10 years of the NHS.

Feedback, comments and suggestions are being invited by 30 September on a series of themes that will form the new ‘Long Term Plan’.

NHS staff, people working across social care and public health, healthcare companies, patients and carers are all encouraged to submit their views.

The plan will seek to ensure the NHS continues to innovate and adapt to the needs of all patients, focusing on three key areas:

  • Mothers & children – improving maternity services, care for ill and disabled children and addressing issues such as obesity and mental health
  • Staying healthy – helping people live longer and healthier lives
  • Ageing well – making the right choices and reducing unnecessary hospital stays

The Plan is being developed by a series of sub-groups and the HIN together with the AHSN Network is supporting the Research and Innovation workstream – it is inviting comments on a series of questions about how the NHS can harness the potential for innovation to transform services and empower staff and patients:

  • How can we increase opportunities for patients and carers to collaborate with the NHS to inform research, and encourage and use of innovations (for example new approaches to providing care, new medical technologies, use of genomics in healthcare and new medicines)?
  • What transformative actions could we take to enable innovations to be developed, and to support their use by staff in the NHS?
  • How can we encourage more people to participate in research in the NHS and do so in a way that reflects the diversity of our population and differing health and care needs
  • What should our priorities be to ensure that we continue to lead the world in genomic medicine?

The deadline for feedback is 30 September – to take part visit the NHS England website to access the questionnaire, or for more background contact england.ltp@nhs.net

Following this initial feedback during September, there will be further opportunities to shape the Long Term Plan throughout the autumn.

£100k awarded to drive NHS innovations across South London

£100k awarded to drive NHS innovations across South London

Twelve projects including schemes to meet the needs of women with perinatal mental health problems, group consultations for chronic health management and challenging conversations training for volunteers have won funding under South London Small Grants 2018.

The awards were made by the Health Innovation Network working in partnership with Health Education England. In all there were 120 applications across 45 different organisations that applied for funding.

The aim of the grants is to support innovative practice that can be spread and adopted across the Health and Social Care landscape.. The funding also aims to encourage cross-boundary working in areas of research, education and improvement in healthcare services.

In previous years, the Small Grants have enabled people across London to access small pockets of funding for research and innovation to try out their ideas, using the grant as a springboard to support their potential.

The 12 Projects that will receive funding are:

Kim Nurse, Darzi Fellow, (Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust): A collaborative project with the University of Creative Arts to create a campaign to education patients, their relatives and staff regarding the risks of deconditioning in hospital

Emily Symington, GP, (Amersham Vale Training Practice): Group consultations for chronic health management in urban deprived population in GP

Manasvi Upadhyaya, Consultant Paediatric Surgeon, (Evelina Children’s Hospital): Development of a gastrostomy care package – a quality improvement project

Vicky Shaw, Clinical Lead, (Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust): A integrated and collaborative approach to Falls training to address high levels of falls amongst residents with dementia in Lewisham Care Homes

Katherine Bristowe, Herbert Dunhill Lecturer, (King’s College London): ACCESSCare-e: reducing inequalities for LGBT people facing advanced illness and bereavement – an evidence based self-paced online intervention

Hind Khalifeh, Honorary Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist, (SLAM/KCL): Meeting the needs of women with perinatal mental health problems through partnerships between NHS perinatal mental health services and voluntary sector organisations Home Start and Cocoon

Ursula Bowerman, Operational Director/Lead Facilitator, (Project Dare/SLAM): The LGBTQ+  Dare Sessions

Estelle Malcolm, Clinical Psychologist, (NAAAPS/SLAM): Using an appreciative inquiry approach to increase the voice of adults with an autism spectrum condition in shaping psychological therapy services

Kate Heaps, CEO, (Greenwich & Bexley Hospice): Young Ward Volunteers Scheme

Michael Brady, Consultant in Sexual Health and HIV, (Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust): Delivering and evaluating a Sexual Health and Well-being service for Trans communities in SE London

Liz Bryan, Director of Education and Training, (St Christopher’s Hospice): Challenging Conversations: training volunteers to support the frail elderly and those with long-term conditions in the community who want to talk about end of life issues

Sophie Butler, Higher Trainee in General Adult Psychiatry, (SLAM): Extreme Psychiatry 2.0

Health Innovation Network’s Stroke Prevention and MSK themes demo new tech at TEDxNHS 2018

Health Innovation Network’s Stroke Prevention and MSK themes demo new tech at TEDxNHS 2018

High profile conference delegates hear about tech developments under Health Innovation Network and AHSN national programmes for ESCAPE-pain and stroke prevention.

The latest TEDxNHS event in London, which has grown to a record 500 delegates, featured talks around the theme of ‘Shaping our Legacy’ to celebrate 70 years of the NHS.

Held at the British Film Institute IMAX, speakers shared untold stories, infectious ideas and tales of evolution that may shape the future of our NHS.

Photos and videos of the talks will be available shortly on the TEDxNHS website for all NHS staff. All you need to do to gain access to three years of TEDxNHS talks is sign-up to our website.

The MSK theme demonstrated the various digital ways to complement the face to face ESCAPE-pain programme while Stroke Prevention was able to instruct people in the use of various AF test devices and update them as to the national drive to increase detention rates.

MSKs Isabel Rodrigues de Abreu and Stroke Prevention’s Alex Lang met Sir Bruce Keogh, former National Medical Director for NHS England, who heard about the progress of the two high profile national programmes.

Both digital ESCAPE-pain support tools are available free of charge – the ESCAPE-pain app can be downloaded onto iOS and Android devices and the recently launched ESCAPE-pain Online, our web-based version of the app, is designed to be accessed from a computer.

Stroke Prevention is continuing its work distributing AF detection devices across south London and has so far distributed more than 250 out of a total of 400 with the rest due to go out by the end of October. The team is targeting high risk population areas.

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder   

Funding Opportunity

 Eligibility 

Deadline

EPSRC Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments.

 

See Website No closing date
Innovation Connect Innovation Connect helps innovators in the health service and industry to realise their ideas and embed them into clinical practice and potential opportunities in international markets.

 

See Website On-going
The Health Foundation Efficiency research programme seeking innovative research ideas into system efficiency and sustainability in health and social care.

 

See Website 24 September 2018, 12pm
Kings Health Partners Research and Development Challenge Fund ‘Fast Track’

 

See Website  Email khpresearchoffice@kcl.ac.uk at any time
Cancer Research UK Accelerator Award. This award, encourages cross-institutional collaboration to accelerate translational research. Any research discipline encouraged. See Website No closing date
Innovate UK Various funding opportunities with the goal of improving digital health See Website

 

Earliest closing day – 26 September 2018

 

Nesta Longitude Prize –
Developing solutions to antimicrobial resistance
See Website Every 4 months from 31 May 2016- 30 Sep 2019
EPSRC Healthcare Technologies discipline hopping call.  Enable researchers to develop new skills and build new collaborations with other disciplines and end users so they can address the key health challenges identified in the Healthcare Technologies strategy.

 

See Website No closing date
British Heart Foundation Research Project Grants See Website No deadline – submit application when ready
The Health Foundation Sciana: The Health Leaders Network. Looking for outstanding leaders in health and health care policy and innovation from across Europe to join the Sciana network. See Website 28 September 2018
British Heart Foundation New Horizons Grants See Website No deadline – submit application when ready
Nesta An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK See Website Ongoing
King’s College London King’s Health Accelerator 2018 Call Open See Website Should apply as soon as possible (King’s staff Internal only)
Medical Research Council The MRC is offering a number of funding opportunities See Website Numerous, earliest closing date 6 September 2018

 

NIHIR Invention for Innovation See Website On-going
Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT) Bright Ideas Fund Teams within GSTT with ideas of commercial potential. See website On-going
UCL Enterprise Bright Ideas Awards

 

See Website On going
NIHIR Digital Technologies to improve health and care See Website 6 November 2018, 1pm

Award-winning ESCAPE-pain programme now online

Award-winning ESCAPE-pain programme now online

The award-winning ESCAPE-pain programme for the management of chronic joint pain is now available online to help ease the suffering of thousands of people across the country.

Chronic joint pain, or osteoarthritis, affects over 8.75 million people in the UK, including half the population over the age of 75, and one in five of the population over 45. A small proportion proceeds to surgical intervention while the vast majority are managed in the community with painkillers.

GPs typically spend around a day a week on appointments related to joint pain; by helping those people with joint pain undertake regular exercises evidenced to improve mobility and reduce pain, a large number of GP appointments can be freed for other people to be seen more quickly.

The new online version of ESCAPE-pain (Enabling Self-management and Coping with Arthritic Pain through Exercise), is a digital version of the well-established, face-to-face group programme that is now delivered in over 80 sites across the UK and is already being used to improve the lives of over 7,000 people with chronic joint pain.

Under the new digital programme, people can choose from 16 high-quality exercise videos to help improve joint pain including engaging animations and education videos to learn to manage their condition better. They can feel more in control of their pain through this free NHS resource developed by the South London-based Health Innovation Network which works to innovate health and care in the NHS.

Professor Mike Hurley, originator of the ESCAPE-pain programme, said:
“Thanks to ESCAPE-pain Online anybody with chronic knee or hip pain can now access the ESCAPE-pain programme regardless of where they live. ESCAPE-pain Online isn’t a replacement for attending the face-to-face programme, as that’s the most effective way to experience its benefits but it will support people to exercise safely and regularly in their own homes. People who are unable to attend a face-to-face programme or those who don’t have access to a smartphone can use ESCAPE-pain Online.”

Health Innovation Network Chief Executive Tara Donnelly said:
“ESCAPE-pain is a proven rehabilitation programme with a strong evidence base approved by NICE that is helping thousands of people who have been suffering in pain. By making use of digital technology and extending the programme through offering videos online, we are rolling out the potential benefit of this programme to many more people experiencing chronic joint pain; currently affecting one in five of the population over 45.”

ESCAPE-pain has been recognised with awards from both the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) and the British Society for Rheumatology, and is cited in the NICE clinical guidelines for osteoarthritis. More recently, ESCAPE-pain has been recommended as a preferred intervention for musculoskeletal conditions by Public Health England, which showed a positive Return on Investment of £5.20 for every £1 spent.

ESCAPE-pain Online is a free resource produced in the NHS by the Health Innovation Network and Salaso Solution Ltd. It is best viewed on a computer and is accessed via the ESCAPE-pain website homepage. For more information please visit escape-pain.org or email hello@escape-pain.org. Watch a film about ESCAPE-pain here.

South London Diabetes Education – Booking Service Contract awarded to Spirit Healthcare

Press Release: South London Diabetes Education Booking Service Contract awarded to Spirit Healthcare

Spirit to deliver new integrated diabetes education booking service to people with diabetes across the 12 south London CCGs

7 August 2018: The twelve south London Clinical Commissioning Groups, led by NHS Southwark CCG, along with the Health Innovation Network, the Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) for south London, are delighted to announce the award of a three-year contract to Spirit Healthcare to help people living with diabetes to select and book the most appropriate diabetes education course for them.

From October 2018, for the first-time, people with diabetes will be offered the choice of any diabetes education course available across south London. This will give them a much wider range of course location and timing options. This will provide the best possibility of increasing attendance rates and helping people with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes to take more control of their own health.

Across south London records show that approximately 165,000 people have diabetes, and this is growing significantly every year. With current attendance rates for diabetes education lower than 10%, the partners led by NHS Southwark CCG, sought a solution to increase uptake of new, accessible education services. During the three years of the new contract, over 40,000 people are expected to benefit from the ability to access a wider range of courses in any part of south London.

Spirit is working collaboratively with Priority Digital Health, a forward thinking digital solution provider based in Cambridge, to develop and deliver this innovative booking service.
GPs and healthcare professionals will be able to refer people living with diabetes to the booking service and people with Type 2 diabetes will also be able to refer themselves and book their course online.

Caroline Gilmartin, Director of Integrated Commissioning NHS Southwark CCG, comments: “We are delighted to have awarded this contract to Spirit. They really understood our vision for this service and we believe this is a great opportunity to get many more people attending diabetes education courses giving them the skills and information to make positive lifestyle changes, take more control of their health and ultimately helping them to improve their health and well-being, whilst living with a long-term condition.

Tim Loveridge, Managing Director, Clinical Services, comments: “We are honoured to have been selected to partner with the south London CCGs and the Health Innovation Network to help people in south London access a broader, more accessible range of diabetes education services. We believe passionately that education is the key to empowering people to take control of their diabetes.”

Alison Meadows, Managing Director/Founder of Priority Digital Health added “We are delighted to have been selected to be Spirit Healthcare’s digital partner for this contract and look forward to deploying our priority.me and social prescribing geo-location technology platform in South London.”

Notes:
The 12 South London CCGs are Bexley CCG, Bromley CCG, Croydon CCG, Greenwich CCG, Kingston CCG, Lambeth CCG, Lewisham CCG, Merton CCG, Richmond CCG, Southwark CCG, Sutton CCG and Wandsworth CCG. The CCGs map directly on to each of the south London Boroughs.

Upcoming Adult Safeguarding Masterclasses

Upcoming Adult Safeguarding Masterclasses

Health Innovation Network are hosting a series of Masterclass safeguarding seminars, supported by the Lambeth Safeguarding Adults Board.

Experts in the field will be providing information on specific topics and facilitating discussion amongst the attendees.

Running from September until December at the new Lambeth Town Hall in Brixton (Room THB-06 (60)), the sessions will last from 09:30 to 13:30 and will cover a number of areas (please see below). This opportunity is perfect if you are a professional from statutory, voluntary or other organisations who provide care and support for adults, their families and carers. Organisations who are interested in attending much be willing to contribute something towards the cost of the seminars.

If you would like members of your organisation to attend, you must be willing to contribute towards the seminars. Please contact Janna Kay to discuss your attendance further.

People encouraged to ‘Go digital’ in new NHS short films

People encouraged to ‘Go digital’ in new NHS short films

A series of nine new films about digital health innovations in the NHS have been launched today, as part of #NHS70DigitalWeek.

Produced by the AHSN Network and NHS England, the films show some of the latest ways the NHS is using digital technology to empower people to take control of their health and care. They feature a range of apps and technologies that are starting to be used in parts of the NHS to help people manage conditions in more flexible ways using digital tools and services.

The NHS is harnessing the power of information and technology to empower people to take control of their own health. Waitless is a app – which combines waiting times at urgent care centres with up-to-the-minute travel information – enables patients to decide where to go to access faster treatment for minor injuries:

MIRA is a digital application that turns practical physiotherapy exercises into videogames to introduce an element of fun into rehab and recovery. It proved to be very popular among the film’s elderly participants, bringing out some healthy competition. Watch this film to learn more:

An innovative way to help women manage hypertension during pregnancy, the HaMpton app enables women like Asha and Clare to monitor their health at home. Watch this film to find out more.

This video shows how the Sleepio app records and recommends ways to improve sleep. Now it’s less counting of sheep – and more good nights of sleep – for people like Audrey and Claire:


Changing Health – a self-management app for type 2 diabetes – is empowering people like Sheinaz to better manage their condition. Watch the video to find out more:

Watch the initial launch film here:


Part of the wider work to celebrate and recognise the NHS’s 70th birthday, the videos aim to prompt people to see the NHS as a digital, as well as face-to-face service. Both the videos and the broader #NHS70DigitalWeek campaign encourage people to visit www.nhs.uk to find out more about how they can engage digitally with their health.

Tara Donnelly, Chief Executive of the Health Innovation Network and AHSN Network lead for digital health said:

“Digital innovation has become an essential part of our everyday life.Whether it is accessing the world’s song catalogue, making immediate connections with friends and family or using maps on our phones to find locations, digital tools have becomepart of thefabric of our lives and society.

“These films show that at 70 years old, the NHS is using digital health more and more, and the benefits are huge. As the innovation arm of the NHS, Academic Health Science Networks are supporting the NHS up and down the country to spread the kind of proven digital innovation that empowers people and frees up clinical time. The reality is that healthcare can be in your pocket.”

The seven examples of digital health that are featured in the series via case studies of people who have used the technology are:

  • Changing Health: digital education and coaching platform for people with type 2 diabetes
  • Sleepio: sleep improvement programme using cognitive behavioural therapy
  • My House of Memories: assisting people living with dementia and memory loss
  • MIRA: turning physiotherapy into videogames to improve adherence and make rehab fun
  • EpsMon: improving epilepsy self-management
  • HaMpton: helping pregnant women to manage high blood pressure at home
  • Waitless: aimed at helping patients to find the shortestwaiting times for A&E and urgent care

The films will be launched over a series of weeks, between 24 July and early September and will be added to this page as they become available.

Sheinaz, who uses the ‘Changing Health’programme, talks in the film about the benefits of a digital approach:

“Going to a (support) group wasn’t going to be sustainable for me, the other option was the health app. Having the app helps me maintain consciousness of the condition I have and that I have responsibility for my own health.”

Another person who took part in the filming was Audrey, who used to suffer from sleep deprivation and used the Sleepio app. She said:

“It’s amazing, it’s the sort of thing you can do when you are commuting.” After having previously been without sleep for several weeks at a time, she reports she now hasn’t had a bad night’s sleep in over a year using this product that is strongly evidenced to combat sleep deprivation.

AHSNs have highlighted digital health innovation as a priority area for the NHS in coming years, particularly in the area of long-term condition management, where there are major opportunities for supporting people in self-management and NHS currently spends 70 per cent of its budget.

Digital therapeutics work best when there is a partnership between the patient, their GP and where necessary a team of specialist clinicians or coaches supervising results, coaching and encouraging. The results achieved by the best-evidenced products are powerful – weight loss, fewer crises, lower blood glucose, increased activity, better adherence to medicine, improved self-care, better sleep and mood, fewer admissions to hospital and savings in the longer term to the NHS thanks to fewer complications. The AHSNs work to identify and help spread these innovations, supporting innovators from both the NHS and industry, as well as staff within the NHS with uptake, to maximise the opportunities for the benefit of patients.

 

 

New funding opportunities for members

New funding opportunities for members

We endeavour to make this as relevant to you as possible so please let us know if there is anything we have missed that you feel should be included.

Funder   

Funding Opportunity

 Eligibility 

Deadline

EPSRC Opportunity for Information and communications technologies researchers to pursue an experience in other disciplines and user environments. See Website No closing date
Innovation Connect Innovation Connect helps innovators in the health service and industry to realise their ideas and embed them into clinical practice and potential opportunities in international markets. See Website On-going
NIHR The Health Technology Assessment Programme is accepting stage 1 applications to their commissioned workstream for this primary research topic: management of orthostatic hypotension. See Website 1st August 2018, 1pm
Kings Health Partners Research and Development Challenge Fund ‘Fast Track’. See Website  Email khpresearchoffice@kcl.ac.uk at any time
Cancer Research UK Accelerator Award. This award, encourages cross-institutional collaboration to accelerate translational research. Any research discipline encouraged. See Website No closing date
Innovate UK Various funding opportunities with the goal of improving digital health. See Website Earliest closing day – 18 July 2018
Nesta Longitude Prize –
Developing solutions to antimicrobial resistance.
See Website Every 4 months from 31 May 2016- 30 Sep 2019
EPSRC Healthcare Technologies discipline hopping call.  Enable researchers to develop new skills and build new collaborations with other disciplines and end users so they can address the key health challenges identified in the Healthcare Technologies strategy. See Website No closing date
British Heart Foundation Research Project Grants See Website No deadline – submit application when ready
Innovate UK SMEs support to evaluate medical technologies: round 2 See Website 22 August 2018
British Heart Foundation New Horizons Grants See Website No deadline – submit application when ready
Nesta An Impact investment fund investing in life-changing innovations that help tackle the major challenges faced by older people, communities and children in the UK See Website Ongoing
King’s College London King’s Health Accelerator 2018 Call Open See Website Should apply as soon as possible (King’s staff Internal only)
Medical Research Council The MRC is offering a number of funding opportunities See Website Numerous, earliest closing date 19 July 2018
NIHIR Invention for Innovation See Website On-going
Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT) Bright Ideas Fund Teams within GSTT with ideas of commercial potential. See website On-going
UCL Enterprise Bright Ideas Awards See Website On going
NIHR Research and Innovation for Global Health Transformation – Call 1 See Website 1 August 2018, 13:00

Community health trainers are tackling high cost of chronic joint pain in innovative new programme

Chris-smith

New study shows community health trainers are tackling high cost of chronic joint pain

New study shows NICE approved new chronic joint pain intervention could be rolled out across the country through community health trainers.

An intervention that relieves chronic joint pain, called Joint Pain Advisor, has been successfully piloted with community health trainers in south London in a project that reduces pressure on GPs and has the potential to improve the lives of millions of people living in pain.

Musculoskeletal (MSK) pain, which includes chronic knee, hip and back pain, has a major impact on individuals and society. It is the second most common reason for GP visits, accounts for around 25% of all GP consultations and is estimated that 9.3 million working days are lost in the UK to MSK problems.

The Joint Pain Advisor model of care is a safe and cost effective alternative to GP consultations. Involving a series of face-to-face consultations, advisors work collaboratively with people with hip and/or knee osteoarthritis and/or back pain, focusing on supporting self-management. This model has been previously delivered by physiotherapists as Advisors but this new, small-scale study trained health trainers to deliver the advice in the community.

The study has shown that using community health trainers to deliver the Joint Pain Advisor model is effective. Many participants of the study said that their pain was dramatically reduced and movement had returned. They reported taking fewer pain-killers as well as increased mobility and weight loss.

The finding is significant because extending the model to community health trainers could result in much faster growth and mean that many more people can benefit from the service. There are around 3,000 community health trainers at present, who currently provide lifestyle advice on issues such as smoking cessation, weight management and healthy eating. Extending the programme to these trainers could mean that thousands more people are able to live in less pain.

Health Innovation Network Clinical Director Professor Mike Hurley said:
“The Joint Pain Advisor approach allows many more people with joint pain to benefit from NICE advice. Our service enables patients to help themselves live better lives – in less pain, able to do more, with a better quality of life.
This new study is small scale but extremely promising. Not only do we know that the Joint Pain Advisor service works to empower people to manage their pain, but through using the thousands of community health trainers up and down the country we can spread this innovation rapidly and help many more people.

With GPs under so much pressure and the countless working days lost to chronic joint pain, our programme could provide both economic and health and care benefits to the NHS.”

To date over 500 patients have used the service with physiotherapists in a previous pilot in Lewisham, south London, and they reported less pain, better function and higher activity levels. A high satisfaction rate was achieved which included reduced BMI, body weight and waist circumference and has led to fewer GP consultations, investigations and onward referrals. For every £1 spent on the programme there is a saving to the health and social care system of up to £4, according a Social Return on Investment (SROI) analysis.
The programme consists of up to four 30-minute face-to-face consultations between the advisors and people with hip or knee osteoarthritis (OA) or back pain. Patients attend an assessment where they discuss their lifestyle, challenges and personal goals and then jointly develop a personalised care plan that gives tailored advice and support based on National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines for the management of OA. They are then invited to attend reviews after three weeks, six weeks and six months to access further tailored support and advice.

Patients involved in the pilot said:
“Before I came, I used to have a lot of pain. Now I can do more walking. It’s helped me.”
“The pains eased, because I’ve strengthened my knees.”
“I’ve stopped taking painkillers because my hip has stopped hurting.”

In the latest study, 10 health trainers were trained as Joint Pain Advisors (JPAs) by the Health Innovation Network and offered the service across six community sites across Greenwich. It involved 85 participants between March 2017 and January this year.

Joint Pain Advisors are currently available in Shropshire and Merton, with plans for Croydon, Bromley and Cornwall to launch Summer 2018.

Download full report Joint Pain Advisor – Greenwich

New tech drive to solve key London challenges including dementia

Clinician looking at digital images

Mayor unveils new tech drive to solve pressing London challenges

The Mayor has launched a major city-wide initiative to harness London’s tech talent during London Tech Week (11-17 June). Health Innovation Network is a challenge partner working to help the Mayor identify digital solutions.

Commenting on the launch this week (11 June) of the Mayor of London’s Civic Innovation Challenge to use tech and data to tackle key challenges, Health Innovation Network Commercial Director Anna King said:

“We’re proud to support the Mayor of London for the first year of the Civic Innovation Challenge. It’s an opportunity for innovative start ups and SMEs to help solve some of London’s pressing challenges, including on health and inequalities. We’re particularly pleased to see the focus on improving dementia treatment and support services for underrepresented communities in London, to help people have more healthy years of life.

“We work with small companies with big ideas every day to help solve problems facing the NHS, so we’ve no doubt that there are fantastic ideas out there to meet the challenges the Mayor has announced. We’d encourage companies to get involved and help us develop new solutions for Londoners.”

The Civic Innovation Challenge is a key initiative within the Mayor of London’s Smarter London Together roadmap published this week. The aim of the challenge is to match tech startups with leading companies and public bodies to tackle some of London’s most pressing problems, including inequality, climate change and London’s ageing population.

Health Innovation Network is working with Our Healthier South East London STP to connect start-ups and SMEs to bid for £15k grants to identify digital solutions to dementia amongst Black Asian and Minority Ethnic communities across south London.

Interested innovators should apply here.

#KnowYourPulse during Heart Rhythm Week

#KnowYourPulse during Heart Rhythm Week

Official figures show that more than 420,000 people across England have undiagnosed irregular heart rhythm, which can cause a stroke if not detected and treated. This week south Londoners can have a free, 30-second pulse rhythm check at selected locations.

A fresh drive has been launched to identify cases of undiagnosed Atrial Fibrillation across south London as part of Arrhythmia Alliance’s Heart Rhythm Week.
Several Health Innovation Network partners are putting on events where the public can attend to have their pulse rhythm checked.

Arrhythmia Alliance World Heart Rhythm Week is taking place this week 4 – 10 June 2018.  Health Innovation Network partners are putting on events where the public can attend to have their pulse rhythm checked in an attempt to detect AF in south London.

So far, these are the following events:

Monday 4/6/18

1300-1600 Main reception, Bracton Centre, Bracton Lane, DA2 7AF

Tuesday 5/6/18

1000-1200 + 1330-1600 Bracton Centre, main reception, Bracton Lane, DA2 7AF

0800-1300 Coin Street Family and Children’s Centre, 108 Stamford Street, SE1 9NH

1000-1400 Gracefield Gardens Health and Social Centre, 2-8 Gracefield Gardens, SW16 2ST

Wednesday 6/6/18

1330-1600  Main reception, Memorial Hospital, Shooters Hill, SE183RG

09.30-1700 Lewisham Pharmacy, 334 Lee High Road, SE13 5PJ

1000-1600 Wimbledon Library, 35 Wimbledon Hill Road, SW19 7NB

Thursday 7/6/18

1000-1200 + 1300-1600 Main reception, Bracton Centre, Bracton Lane, DA2 7AF

09.30-1700 Lewisham Pharmacy, 334 Lee High Road, SE13 5PJ

Friday 8/6/18

1330-1600 Main reception, Bracton Centre, Bracton Lane, DA2 7AF

09.30-1700 Lewisham Pharmacy, 334 Lee High Road, SE13 5PJ

1400-18.30 Ethnic Minority Centre, Vestry Hall, 336 London Road, CR4 3UD

Saturday 9/6/18

09.30-1700 Lewisham Pharmacy, 334 Lee High Road, SE13 5PJ

1000-1600 Downham Festival, 7-9 Moorside Road, BR1 5EP

Sunday 10/6/18

0930-1700 Lewisham Pharmacy, 334 Lee High Road, SE13 5PJ

Social prescribing champion training sessions

Social prescribing champion training sessions

Health Innovation Network are proud to be delivering ‘Social Prescribing Champion Training’ sessions in June and July in collaboration with Wandsworth and Merton CCGs. For those working health and care, based in GP practices, working with voluntary groups and/or do some signposting. Please select a date out of four options and book this fantastic opportunity.

Training dates – One half-day (four-hour) session:

Thursday 21 June 9:00 – 13:00, Book here

Friday 22 June 12:00 – 16:00, Book here

Monday 2 July 9:00 – 13:00, Book here

Friday 6 July 12:00 – 16:00, Book here

For further details, please contact Urvi Shah at urvi.shah2@nhs.net

What is Social Prescribing?

Social prescribing is a means of enabling GPs, nurses and other primary care professionals to refer people to a range of local, non-clinical services.*

*kingsfund.org.uk/publications/social-prescribing

More support and choice for south Londoners at risk of Type 2 diabetes

More support and choice for south Londoners at risk of Type 2 diabetes

A new collaboration will mean more choice and expert support for south Londoners at risk of Type 2 diabetes. The Health Innovation Network, NHS England, Public Health England and Diabetes UK have confirmed a new contract with ICS Health & Wellbeing (ICS) to offer 4260 free places on Healthier You: the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme across south London.

Healthier You is a nine-month behaviour change programme that helps local patients at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes to significantly reduce their chances of getting the disease. Local doctors and nurses refer people to be part of this course so that they can receive support to change their lifestyle in a friendly and supportive group environment. The behaviour change programme runs for nine months and consists of a mixture of 1:1 and group sessions delivered by specially trained Health and Wellbeing coaches, advising individuals on how to prevent diabetes by incorporating healthier eating, physical activity, problem solving, stress reduction and coping skills into their daily lives.

Across south London it is estimated that approximately 275,000 are at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Under the new contract, over 4000 people are expected to benefit and choice will be improved because they will be able to access courses in any part of London including evenings and weekends.

Neel Basudev, south London GP and Clinical Lead for south London Healthier You, said:

“I am delighted that ICS will be providing Healthier You in south London for local people who are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.   This will be an opportunity to make positive, lifestyle changes and take more control of their health and ultimately help prevent them developing what is a potentially life threatening condition.” 

Operations Manager for ICS, Megan Baird, said:

“We are now the only provider across London – this means more patient choice and flexibility to attend services across multiple locations and timings to suit individual needs. We are extremely passionate about the delivery of our service to support those at risk of developing type 2 diabetes and look forward to implementing a successful programme across South London.”

ICS is the largest provider for the NHS National Diabetes Prevention Programme. With 19 delivery areas across the UK, ICS has a wealth of experience in delivering the nine month intervention effectively. Across the UK to date, ICS has received over 63,000 referrals, delivered over 30,000 face-to-face initial assessments and run over 1,200 courses. 95% our service users rate the service as Very Good or Good at 9 Months, 79% of service-users lose weight and 66% of service users accessing the service across London are from BAME groups.

Ten thousand people have already been referred to Healthier You under the previous provider, Reed Momenta.

Reducing diabetes is a priority for the NHS. It is estimated that the condition currently costs the NHS £8.8 billion every year. People wishing to be part of the programme should speak to their GP or Practice Nurse who can make a referral into the service if the person is eligible.

Health Innovation Network begins partnership with Alzheimer’s Society

Health Innovation Network begins partnership with Alzheimer’s Society

Health Innovation Network has committed to taking action on dementia by uniting with Alzheimer’s Society in a strategic partnership to change the landscape of dementia care forever.

Dementia is the UK’s biggest killer, with 1 million people set to be living with the condition by 2021.

Having collaborated on a number of successful initiatives including Dear-GP and the “Red Bag” scheme, Health Innovation Network and Alzheimer’s Society are launching a formal partnership to tackle dementia together.

Through the partnership we will support one another in the development of new initiatives to ensure timely diagnosis and develop practical tools to improve health outcomes for people with dementia.  Each organisation will use its expertise and networks to increase the reach and impact of successful initiatives and facilitate the sharing of best practice in dementia care across health and social care.

Zoe Lelliott, Deputy Chief Executive at Health Innovation Network, said: ‘We’re delighted to be working in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Society. As one of the leading voluntary sector organisations at the forefront of championing the needs of people with dementia at a national level, we are excited about the opportunities this new partnership will bring for the benefit of people with dementia in south London’,

Tim McLachlan, Director of Local Services at Alzheimer’s Society, said: “Dementia devastates lives, slowly stripping people of their memories, relationships and identities. As the UK’s biggest killer, taking action with other charities and health organisations is vital to help us understand more about this devastating illness.

“I am delighted that the Health Innovation Network is uniting with us this Dementia Action Week. Whoever you are, whatever you are going through, no one should face dementia alone.”

Innovation and Technology Payment (ITP): One year on

Innovation and Technology Payment (ITP): One year on

Written by Tara Donnelly, Chief Executive at Health Innovation Network

The latest products available at low or no cost through the NHS Innovation and Technology Payment (ITP) have been announced by NHS England, and we were pleased to see some fantastic innovations that reduce the need for intervention, improve care, reduce infection rates and length of stay, and NHS resources.

Above all, we were struck by the potential for the innovations on this tariff to improve patient safety. Here at the Health Innovation Network, we want to do all we can to help NHS organisations in south London take advantage of them.

Nationally the tariff was a real success in its first year, with myCOPD leading the way. There are now more than 35,000 people actively using this great digital tool to improve their self-management and this number is increasing by 5,000 – 8,000 a month. In total almost 100,000 licences have been sold 60% through the tariff and the rest by CCGs and individual patients keen to self manage. You can read more reflections on the first year of the tariff in my related blog here.

It’s great to see the range of products available this coming year. But as an AHSN, we know that just because a product is free or low-cost that doesn’t mean it’s easy to implement, or that the internal resources are available to support implementation. We want to support Trusts as much as we can.

The support we can offer includes help with internal business cases, advice on information governance, connecting trusts to others who have used the products, advice on how to reclaim funds and use the tariff, and wider advice as needed. If you’re an NHS organisation in south London and would like to access HIN support, please do contact us at kate.covill@nhs.net and ian.knighton@nhs.net or on 0207 188 9805.

The products are:

Available completely free for 2018/19:

  • Endocuff Vision – a small device that goes onto the end of a colonoscope and improves the quality of colorectal examination.
  • SecurAcath – a device to secure lines that reduces the infection risk for patients with a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC line). This type of catheter is normally used in people needing intravenous access for several weeks or months in both inpatient and outpatient settings. The use of this device makes cleaning the site much easier and reduces complications. NICE estimates it could improve care for up to 120,000 people each year.

Available free to eligible sites that do high volumes:

  • HeartFlow – advanced image analysis software that creates a 3D model of the coronary arteries and analyses the impact that blockages have on blood flow to rapidly diagnose patients with suspected coronary artery disease. The use of the device can avoid the need for invasive investigations such as coronary angiography, usually carried out under local anaesthetic, where a catheter is passed through the blood vessels to the heart to release a dye before X-rays are taken. NICE estimates it could improve care for up to 35,000 people each year.

Available at 30% discount to eligible sites (as eligible Trusts can reclaim the difference between this product and regular sutures):

  • Plus Sutures – a new type of surgical suture coated with Triclosan, that reduces the rate of surgical site infection. 32% of hospital acquired infections are surgical site infections (SSI), most of which can be prevented. Trusts with SSI rates of above 4% in certain clinical specialties are eligible.

In an effort to tackle the problem of missed hospital appointments NHS England is also supporting the use of DrDoctor, a digital tool which enables patients view, change and schedule appointments on their smartphone, in several demonstrator sites. Almost eight million hospital appointments were missed in 2016/17, according to the latest figures. With each hospital outpatient appointment costing the NHS c£120, it means almost £1 billion worth of appointments were missed, equivalent to completing 257,000 hip replacements or 990,000 cataract operations.

We’d also like to urge readers not to forget that the original products that came into effect in April 2017 remain available at either no cost or through Trusts being able to claim a tariff, until April 2019. They are:

  • Guided episiotomy EPISCISSORS-60guided mediolateral scissors to minimise the risk of obstetric injury, these are now being used in most south London maternity units, including Croydon University Hospital, Epsom and St Helier at both hospital sites, King’s College Hospital, on both the King’s and Princess Royal University Hospital sites and St George’s University Hospital.
  • Safe arterial connector Non-injectable arterial connector (NIC)arterial connecting systems preventing the accidental administration of medicationinto an artery, these are being used successfully at Kingston Hospital.
  • VAP prevention PneuXpneumonia prevention systems which are designed to stop ventilator-associated pneumonia.
  • Web based COPD rehab myCOPDweb based application for the self-management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The scheme means that CCGs and Trusts can get the product free for their patients with severe/very severe COPD. It is proving very popular with patients with over 20,000 people having completed the online pulmonary rehabilitation programme to stay well for longer, and usage is currently being explored within SW London.
  • Day case prostate surgery UroLiftprostatic urethral lift systems to treat lower urinary tract symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia as a day case.

Another great safety innovation

As part of our role in promoting innovations that improve patient safety we are also supporting WireSafe which avoids the never event of a guidewire being inadvertently left in the patient. We know that sadly this never event has occurred in the past year in south London trusts. This ingenious and award-winning device, innovated by the doctor innovator of the NIC, makes it impossible to leave the guidewire in accidently, as you need to use it to open the closing pack. It is not free but is a low cost solution costing the average trust around £3k per year (or £5k for a very large trust).

As an AHSN Network we’ve also built an informative web page devoted to the Innovation and Technology Payment that you and colleagues can view here. Final guidance is awaited from NHS England but will be posted there once available. Free demos and training sessions are also being made available to enable staff to become familiar with and test the devices.

Contact us for support via kate.covill@nhs.net or on 0207 188 9805.

And read further reflections on the tariff here.