For the first time in South West London, Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) patients will be able to self-manage their care and communications with clinical teams, thanks to funding awarded to Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust by the NHS Health Innovation Network.
With the Health Innovation Network funding, Dr Rishi Goel, Consultant Gastroenterologist and Lead for IBD Services at Kingston Hospital, will be trialling the digital interface ‘Zesty’ to provide self-monitoring tools via a patient portal, allowing patients to have direct involvement in their care.
Dr Goel was one of five winners of the Health Innovation Network’s Innovation Grants awards. The five winners were chosen from 32 applications after a rigorous selection process by an expert panel and in partnership with Health Education England. All of the chosen innovations align to key NHS priorities by addressing major health challenges.
The teams will be funded and supported by the Health Innovation Network over a 12-month period to pilot their projects and generate evidence of impact before potential wider roll-out.
Dr Goel said: “Surveillance and follow up of IBD patients is crucial to ensure disease remission and to reduce disease progression. Flare ups can be unpredictable, making the traditional model of regular outpatient follow up inefficient and less responsive to patients’ needs when they are acutely unwell.
“When an IBD patient is having a flare-up, it’s essential for them to understand what they can do to help themselves. Self-management gives them an active role in their healthcare, empowering them to take control of their condition and is part of a broader shift in health towards shared responsibility.”
Lesley Soden, Programme Director for Innovation, at the Health Innovation Network, said:
“The impact of COVID-19 on our NHS services means that we need to look at different ways of working to improve health and care for people in South London. This funding is crucial to kick-start innovation projects to test out different innovations and new ways of partnership working. NHS teams often struggle to find substantial funding to pilot new ideas in real-world settings to demonstrate the kind of results they need for support for wider roll out across regions and potentially nationally.
“For the 2021 winners we’re looking forward to working with these teams to prove their concepts and demonstrate real world application to enable greater adoption across the health and social care system.” Find out more about the HIN Innovation Grants.