The West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN) has celebrated the best of innovation in healthcare around the West Midlands by presenting its third annual Meridian awards.
Representatives from the region’s NHS, industry, academia, third sector, charities, care homes and patient population gathered at the Birmingham Conference & Events Centre for the Meridian Celebration of Innovation Awards.
The awards were established to recognise and celebrate the work of individuals and organisations in developing better healthcare and economic benefit for the region, and the ceremony provided an opportunity to celebrate achievements from across the West Midlands.
The winners were:
Supporting Self Care and Prevention of Illness Innovation Award
Love Your Heart submitted by The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust
Love Your Heart is an online interactive educational programme to address the cardiovascular aspects of rheumatoid disease. The judges thought it provided a good example of a collaborative and thoughtful approach, meeting a defined and known need.
MidTECH Award for Best NHS-Developed Medical Technology Innovation recognising
SMARTChip submitted by University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire NHS Trust
SMARTChip is a field deployable blood test for stroke, capable of detecting brain ischaemia from the earliest stages. The judges felt that this is a very promising innovation and a clear example of regional innovation and the power of co-creation and co-production.
Digital or Artificial Intelligence Innovation of the Year Award
West Midlands Regional Image Sharing Platform (RISP) – Removing the Blindfold submitted by University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust.
RISP is creating an entirely new IT infrastructure across the West Midlands: when a clinician searches on RISP for a patient, the system summarises and presents the information in seconds, thereby ‘removing the blindfold’ from clinicians across the region.
The judges felt that RISP shows a particularly exciting, pan regional approach with benefits for patients and staff and a long overdue solution to an unmet need.
Mental Health Innovation Award
Electronic Health Record Viewer (MERIT) submitted by Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust
The Electronic Health Record Viewer (EHRV) facilitates safe and effective care to patients who need mental health care at another MERIT trust: for the first time, clinicians are able to view aspects of a patient’s clinical record from another partner trust, in real time. The judges felt that this is a promising initiative that responds to a known problem and is already demonstrating impact.
Advanced Diagnostics, Genomics and Precision Medicine Award
HeartFlow FFRCT Analysis submitted by HeartFlow, Inc.
HeartFlow FFRCT offers a non-invasive method of estimating fractional flow reserve, and likelihood of Coronary Heart Disease, by using software to produce a simulation ‘model’ of coronary physiology based on previously acquired computerised data.
The judges felt that this innovation had massive potential to improve care and reduce costs. Through improving diagnosis and reducing the need for invasive interventions this NICE supported approach is proving to be successful within the region.
Health Start-Up of the Year Award
Healthy.io is an SME with a mission to use the smartphone camera to improve healthcare. The judges felt the winners had huge potential with strong initial evidence and early-stage buy-in. The company has been accepted on to the NHS Innovation Acceleration Programme.
Industry NHS Collaboration Award
The Binding Site Group’s project with the NHS aimed to determine if the replacement of urine analysis with the Binding Site Freelite test would improve the detection rates and thus decrease diagnostic delays for Multiple Myeloma, the second most common blood cancer, with the longest time to diagnosis. Judges thought that the winner addressed a significant need and that the company is continuing to improve and promote clinical education programmes and provide specialist products.
In addition, the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic NHS foundation Trust (RJAH) won the Meridian Award for their project: Integrating genomic medicine into current care. The project brings together the 100,000 Genomes Project, the RJAH muscle team model, the RJAH Biobank of the Study of Health and Disease and the Montgomery Unit. The judges felt that the project showed vision by embracing genomic medicine, and the potential the 100,000 Genomes Project has to transform the way health is delivered.
Dr Christopher Parker, Managing Director of WMAHSN, said: “Once again, we have been struck by the passion and enthusiasm of the award entries. The quality of submissions improves year on year and we see in each of our winners true innovation and real potential. Congratulations to all of our winners, this was a really tough field and you should feel rightly proud of your Meridian Celebration of Innovation Award.”