Funding secured for innovative health projects

News: Engage MSK

Two innovative Oxleas projects have secured funding after being announced as winners in the Health Innovation Awards 2019.

The awards, run annually by the Health Innovation Network, reveal the latest new projects in development to improve care for people in south London and support the innovators behind them. Successful projects receive around £10,000 of funding to help bring them to life.

Our two winning projects were:

  • Digital self-referral for people with musculoskeletal problems and pain, developed by MSK service lead and operational manager, Heather Ritchie
  • Mobile simulation labs to test and develop digital health technology, which is the work of Dr James Woollard, Chief Clinical Information Officer and Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist.

The MSK project uses a self-referral system called Engage Consult, allowing for faster triage and in time, linking with other digital technology being used so patients and clinicians can see and discuss care plans. Smart questions screen for ‘red flag’ symptoms and referral is direct to MSK specialists, rather than the route of referral through the GP, freeing up their time.

Heather said: "MSK affects so many of us and puts huge pressure on primary care. If people can get clinical advice more quickly it doesn’t only improve safety, it means that individuals will feel more supported and less anxious."

News: James Woollard

For the mobile simulation lab project, James and his team will develop cost effective mobile simulation labs that will help with learning and to build confidence in the use of digital technology tools.

James said: "The NHS has used clinical simulation for years and it’s time we applied the same theory to digital technology. At the moment, we’re asking our staff to use equipment that has very rarely been tested live in the kind of high pressure scenarios they face."

Zoe Lelliott, Chief Executive at the Health Innovation Network, said: "When it comes to innovation we have no dearth of great ideas in the NHS. What we often lack is the initial finance needed to get a new idea off the ground, and to generate evidence of outcomes so that others will support the project. The projects we’re supporting today are truly exceptional and stood out to us as highly innovative approaches that meet pressing health and care needs.”

Published on 27th September 2019