Innovation spread

What was delivered in 2022-23? 

  • We continued our support for the NHS Innovation Accelerator (NIA), an NHS England initiative designed to support innovators to scale their innovations for greater patient and population benefit. Throughout 2022-23, we offered advice, guidance and networking opportunities to innovators, enabling them to share their learning, insight and expertise widely.
  • We continued our long history of successfully supporting innovators to shape their funding bids. This includes supporting applications to the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) Healthcare programme, which aims to accelerates innovative technologies in the NHS and the wider health and social care system to tackle unmet health and care needs. Our expert team offer innovators advice on whether their proposed project fits the scope of the call, saving them time and resource.
  • We strengthened our commitment to the MedTech funding mandate (MTFM), which aims to accelerate the uptake of selected innovative medical devices, diagnostics and digital products, so that patients benefit faster. We empower the mandate by communicating with local healthcare services and commissioners regarding these technologies, and assisting with their adoption across Wessex health systems where there is clinical appetite. In 2022-23, this included trialling Thopaz+, a portable digital chest drain system, at three different NHS trusts in Wessex (Dorset County, Portsmouth and Salisbury).  
  • Our regional partnership with Wessex Cancer Alliance has also continued to accelerate the uptake of innovations that lead to earlier cancer diagnosis, in line with the ambitious aims of the NHS Long Term Plan.

Our Asthma Biologics Rapid Uptake Product (RUP) programme has:

  • Supported 445 patients being initiated on biologic therapy. In Wessex, we achieved 106.6% against the set trajectory for new patients initiated on biologic therapy.
  • Reduced the waiting time from a decision from the multi-disciplinary team (MDT) to initiation of a biologic to an average of less than four weeks, compared to 12-52 weeks previously.
  • Successfully launched the consensus pathway, which guides clinicians, managers and commissioners on what optimal care should look like across the entire patient journey, leading to real improvements in outcomes.
  • Supported our severe asthma centres in Portsmouth and Southampton to be early adopters of the myAsthmaBiologics App, which was developed specifically for the programme by the lead AHSN (Oxford).
  • Facilitated the formation of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight (HIOW) Respiratory Partnership Board and asthma sub-group, which aim to improve outcomes for people living with respiratory disease.
  • Identified and coordinated a partnership opportunity between HIOW Integrated Care Board and GlaxoSmithKline UK Ltd (GSK) to facilitate the delivery of the UNITE service. Launching in October 2022, the UNITE service is a joint working agreement between HIOW ICB and GlaxoSmithKline UK Ltd which enables nurse specialists to identify and review patients with uncontrolled asthma in primary care and refer them, if appropriate, into severe asthma centres.
  • Supported University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust to make their Pathway Transformation Fund (PTF) asthma co-ordinator a substantive post due to the positive impact on the service. 

In 2022-23, our national FeNO implementation programme has continued to transform asthma care for patients in Wessex, and nationally. 

As lead AHSN, we have supported the further rollout of FeNO testing in primary care in all AHSN regions in England, helping patients with confirmed or suspected asthma to access diagnostics and treatments in a timely manner.

Nationally, the FeNO programme, has:

  • Supported 58,000* new asthmatics to receive a correct diagnosis
  • Implemented 1,244 new devices in primary care, with an estimated 53% of Primary Care Networks (PCNs) now with access, supported by an extensive FeNO implementation toolkit
  • Delivered the National FeNO Learning Collaborative series, consisting of five webinars
  • Developed and rolled out two training modules, resulting in 4,964 hours of training
  • Provided three national conference presentations
  • Produced a blog on spread methodologies with NHS Horizons
  • Awarded 33 AAC Pathway Transformation Fund projects, with a total value of £915,000, to support and embed the use of FeNO devices.
  • Supported market stimulation – growing the market and helping to drive down access costs.
  • Supporting our two public partners to contribute to the national FeNO working group, ensuring the lived experiences of people with asthma are represented and considered within programme delivery.

*Based on programme data

Locally, we improved asthma care and patient outcomes by: 

  • Supporting an estimated 3,745 patients* to be correctly diagnosed with asthma
  • Increasing access to FeNO testing by supporting the purchase of 37 devices for use across Wessex, against a trajectory of 16. This includes working with the Dorset health and care system to implement FeNO testing across its 18 Primary Care Networks (PCNs).
  • Implementing 103 FeNO devices in primary care across Wessex over the two years of the programme.
  • Supported the delivery of three local respiratory health inequalities projects in Southampton and Portsmouth, prioritising and providing FeNO devices to PCNs known to have high levels of deprivation.
  • Helping to organise the launch event for the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Respiratory Partnership, a collaboration of health and care organisations which aims to improve health outcomes for the local population by taking a collective approach to respiratory care. We continue to support the group and attend regular meetings. 

Read the programme impact report.

*Based on project derived data

Back to main annual review