Dr. Iain Hennessey

The great dinnertime debate — how to harness innovation in healthcare.

By Dr Iain Hennessey, Clinical Director of Innovation, Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.

Facing huge financial and operational pressure, the NHS has to find new ways of providing services to patients. That’s why the King’s Fund and BT recently brought together some of the best minds in healthcare to explore how to create a culture of innovation in the health sector.

New technology improves treatment.

At my hospital, Alder Hey, we’ve certainly seen the importance of innovation. And I think there are endless possibilities for using advanced technology to significantly improve patient care across the NHS. One such example is the use of 3D printing to aid surgeons like me.

To achieve this, healthcare organisations have to bring together people with different expertise and ways of thinking to tackle problems. And it has to be a conscious decision, which is why our new, state-of-the-art hospital has space for a research and innovation hub. This gives scientists and clinicians the chance to collaborate with external experts to develop and share new ideas with other hospitals.

Discussing innovation over dinner.

Recently, I was lucky enough to share my experience of innovation in healthcare at BT’s series of events with The King’s Fund: ‘Innovation in healthcare: Creating a culture where successful innovation can thrive’.

Held on 21 October, the dinner brought together top innovators in the healthcare sector, including BT’s President of Global Government and Health, Ian Dalton, and the evening’s chairperson, Richard Bohmer — a King’s Fund International Visiting Fellow from Harvard.

Topics for the future of healthcare.

As The King’s Fund has covered before, the NHS needs to use innovation as a catalyst for change — delivering higher-quality care at a lower cost. And this event brought us together to look at how leaders, employees and patients can contribute to creating a culture of innovation.

Key topics from the evening included:

  • how to encourage innovation to spread when the NHS struggles to adopt change at speed and scale
  • identifying the vital ingredients for successful innovation, and how to implement them at speed
  • how to start the journey toward change, and how leaders, clinicians and patients can play a role.

Find out the answers by watching the short video below — featuring interviews with Ian Dalton and me:

[youtube width=”583″ height=”315″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vgQIoVk1tdw[/youtube]

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