Idea Description
Supplementary Information
Detailed Submission Data
Innovation 'Elevator Pitch':
A modular university accredited programme which builds the skills, understanding, tools and confidence of NHS junior and middle managers to implement innovations leading to greater efficiency and rapid improvement in services for patients
Overview of Innovation:
The gap between research evidence and practice is significant for healthcare organisations. Healthcare interventions which we know to be effective can take a long time to enter common practice, whilst others which we know to be ineffective can take a long time to be discarded. The implementation rates of quality improvement (QI) initiatives, for example, are believed to be lower than 50%. Implementing innovations is demanding of employees and organizations--cognitively, emotionally, and physically.. When attempting to implement innovations, organizations face challenges such as misaligned incentives, professional barriers, competing priorities, and inertia.
Studies of innovation implementation in health care settings have shown that middle managers can play an important role in enabling innovation, and supporting healthcare innovation implementation as information brokers - communicating, diffusing and mediating information flow between senior leaders and frontline staff. Middle managers with the capability and confidence to innovate and to lead service improvements are therefore essential if the NHS is to deliver radical and transformational change across whole healthcare systems. But evidence suggests that middle managers are often slow to adopt innovations, whether through generating ideas for improvement or creating opportunities for spread of good practice across departments and organisations.The enablers for junior and middle managers to become improvement leaders have been identified as:
  • proficiency with management skills and tools, (including financial, HR and workforce, programme, operational and strategic management),
  • skilled use of improvement science and quality methods,
improved personal impact on the wider system, through understanding how to influence, motivate and engage effectively with other practitioners at all levels.

This new programme seeks to bridge the research/practice gap through combining academic theory and conceptual frameworks with practical skills-based learning and behavioural development approaches to support junior and middle managers to become confident improvement practitioners. The programme combines classroom-based learning with application to identified improvement projects, ensuring that academically-rigorous teaching is linked to work-based practice and is grounded in the needs of managers, their organisations and the people who depend on health services.
Stage of Development:
Evaluation stage - Representative model or prototype system developed and can be effectively evaluated
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There is a clear gap which this submission identifies around skills, knowledge and ability to deliver improvement activity and innovation, this is well articulated by the submission.

QI based training for staff is a well worn route and I'm not sure from the submission what this course offers that is different from other approaches which have been tried (sometimes at scale). The gap between training and implemnetation in QI approaches is well recognised (I can comment less on the innovations aspect) and I'm not sure if this (at least from the current) description is an innovative approach to providing education.

One of the key aspects of delivering QI is the 'on the job' experience of delivering QI projects in the messy reality of a complex social system that is health. Whilst this submission does identify that peer support, refletive learning, networking etc are key to move from awareness to using skills I'm not sure it fully articulates why this programme would be different from others in translation into action on the ground.

I wonder whether there is room for more innovation in terms of delivering this kind of capability building? The programme may be different from other in this regard but it is difficult to understand this from the submission. 

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