Cumbria Crack
Health

Search for best innovations in healthcare is underway

[H]ealthcare pioneers are invited to submit their ideas to a prestigious annual competition that showcases the best innovations in patient care.

Now in its 15th year, the Bright Ideas in Health Awards competition celebrates and rewards the ground-breaking work emerging from front line NHS staff and SMEs in the North East and North Cumbria.

The Awards are organised by The Academic Health Service Network for the North East and North Cumbria (AHSN NENC) and the organisation is encouraging healthcare frontline staff to submit their innovative ideas by the closing date of 17th September 2018.

Dr Nicola Wesley, Chief Operations Officer at AHSN NENC, said: “We are looking forward to celebrating the region’s brightest healthcare pioneers at this year’s Bright Ideas in Health Awards.

“Over the past 15 years, the Awards have gone from strength to strength and have grown to become one of the most highly sought after and respected accolades in the region’s healthcare sector.

“The Awards are a fantastic showcase of the bright ideas that help to improve patient care and innovation in the NHS. We eagerly anticipate another year of outstanding entries from the individuals and teams working within the NHS, industry and academia, who have risen to the challenge of developing innovative solutions to tackle the healthcare challenges we face today.”

The Awards are open to all healthcare professionals, including those in Primary and Secondary care, and regional SMEs engaged in healthcare, and are designed to show how everyone can play their part in improving innovation. There are five categories this year: Development of an Innovative Device or Technology; Service Improvement; Innovation Champion of the Year; Demonstrating an Impact upon Patient Safety and Research Impact: Improving Patient Care.

The winners of each category will be announced at a special ceremony on Thursday 29th November 2018, at the Newcastle Gateshead Hilton Hotel, attended by hundreds of key decision makers including Chief Executives of regional NHS Foundation Trusts, Clinical Commissioning Groups, leading healthcare professionals and local Government representatives, as well as representatives from industry and academia. The winners will also receive a cash prize to help progress their ideas as well as specialist support from innovation experts at AHSN NENC including two new Innovation Managers Charlotte Fox and Mark Taylor.

Charlotte Fox joins AHSN NENC from City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, where she worked with the Research and Innovation department. She was previously involved with the winning entry in the 2017 Innovative Technology or Device category of the Bright Ideas in Health Awards, along with several other shortlisted ideas.

Charlotte said: “I’d encourage anyone with a great idea – whether it’s a groundbreaking piece of technology or a better way of delivering a service – to enter the competition, as the Awards can lead to new opportunities to develop your ideas further. It is a really exciting time to be working in healthcare in the North East and I am looking forward to finding out more about this year’s entrants.”

Mark Taylor joins the AHSN NENC from the Local Clinical Research Network (LCRN) and will assist in developing, commercialising and driving the adoption of healthcare innovations.

Mark said: “One of the great things about the Bright Ideas in Health Awards is the potential for the real world application of healthcare innovations and the benefits that they can bring about for the NHS. Ultimately, innovation is about spreading the adoption of ideas and sharing knowledge to achieve better outcomes for patients and it’s great to be on board and working with our healthcare partners to encourage the submission of ideas.”

Last year’s winners included a non-invasive test for bladder cancer; a specialist training programme for allergies; a laboratory sample pallet; an Acute Kidney Injury awareness initiative; falls prevention training; treatment for inherited kidney disease; and a direct GP booking service.

Inventor Andrew Turner was part of the winning team at City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust and Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust, in the 2017 Innovative Technology or Device category. The team scooped the award for its Laboratory Sample Pallet project, designed to improve efficiencies, reduce costs and save on bench space.

Andrew Turner said: “It was a great honour to win the Innovative Technology or Device category at the 2017 Bright Ideas in Health Awards, and fantastic for the whole team to be recognised for our hard work. The success gave us all a huge boost and demonstrated how a team from a number of different healthcare backgrounds can come together to drive greater efficiencies in the NHS.”

The 2017 Patient Safety and Quality Improvement category was won by South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and CRAB Clinical Informatics Limited with their bright idea, ‘Reducing Patient Harm Associated with Acute Kidney Injury (AKI)’, which aimed to reduce patient harm associated with AKI across their Trust.

Dr Jonathan Murray, Renal Consultant at South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We were thrilled to receive the Bright Ideas in Health Award, which reflected a great deal of hard work and support from within and beyond the Trust’s renal team. The renal team has also been approached by Trusts elsewhere in the country who are keen to share our ideas. The Award has been a great morale boost and it’s given us a fantastic springboard to develop strategies to promote AKI care within Primary care and at the Primary-Secondary care interface.”

The Bright Ideas in Health Awards are sponsored by: Clinical Research Network North East and North Cumbria; Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust; City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust; Sintons LLP; North East Leadership Academy; University of Teesside and Centre for Process Innovation (CPI).

The deadline for applications is 17th September 2018 and to submit an entry, visit: https://brightideasinhealth.org.uk/

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