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90INNOVATION UKINNOVATION Innovation - a fantastic opportunity to transform health services The NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement is a centre of excellence supporting the NHS to transform healthcare for patients and the public by developing and spreading new ways of working, new technology and world- class leadership. It provides a coordinated focus on the biggest challenges faced by the health service and acts as an active " test bed" providing practical new approaches to care delivery. The NHS has a great opportunity within its 1.3 million workforce, all of whom can be innovative, if only they knew it. The NHS is also facing unprecedented challenges to find ways to increase quality without raising costs. Its chief executive, David Nicholson, believes the answer lies in innovation. How can the NHS harness its workforce to be more innovative with a specific focus on increasing quality and productivity? Dozens of Scottish companies have benefited from the innovation centre's ground- breaking advisory support services, which are based in a top- class facility near Glasgow Airport. What do I do on Monday morning? Innovation is a word that gets used a lot, but what does it really mean to a member of its front- line staff? We often get asked, " if I want to be innovative what do I have to do on Monday morning when I come to work?" This, added to the perception that innovation comes from a few clever people who sit in an isolated room and come up with all of the ideas, is the sort of thing we need to tackle in order to maximise the NHS potential to provide high- quality care for all. When we look at innovative organisations across the world we can see that the way they innovate is not random but is a result of a highly organised and deliberate process which all can follow. The NHS Institute has adopted this principle and established its own innovation pipeline through which all new ideas and programmes for innovation progress. This is not a practice that is established throughout the NHS, and the results of a recent survey we conducted with the NHS highlighted the need for its staff to know what to do on Monday morning. Mesages from the front line of care Critical to helping NHS staff with their biggest challenges is to actually understand what those challenges are from the perception of those on the front line of care delivery - the nurses, doctors, physiotherapists and managers. The NHS Institute has just conducted the first national Innovation and Improvement Survey aimed at gathering insights into the techniques and methods currently being used within the NHS to improve health and healthcare services, understanding the challenges being faced on an everyday basis and gaining new knowledge about the support that those involved in making improvements require. Over 4,300 NHS staff responded, telling us that increased training and development in the tools and methods of innovation and improvement was the most important thing they needed in order that they can really transform our health services. Innovation Practitioners coming son The NHS Institute has established an intensive training programme for Innovation Practitioners. The participants have been drawn from across the NHS providers and commissioners, from clinical, operational and improvement leadership roles, all with an ambition to transform healthcare services. They have been coached to use a systematic and deliberate process for innovation, including ideas generation, prioritising and selecting ideas, prototyping and creative implementation. A core component of the training is the use of " open innovation", which means an approach to innovation not constrained by internal thinking, but that stimulates new thinking and new relationships with people from outside health industries. LEFT: Dr Lynne Maher Healthcare NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement