Collaboration brings clinical academic innovation to the fore

A number of patient-centred initiatives have been selected to receive funding to help transform heart and lung care for adults and children.

Teams from Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust, Guy’s and St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT), King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (KCH) and King’s College London (KCL) will come together across several clinical areas, including cardiovascular, respiratory and critical care, to develop pioneering projects focused on improving patient care and outcomes for adults and children.

More than 300 staff contributed to 39 funding applications which were then peer-reviewed and shortlisted for consideration by a cross partnership panel. The panel, chaired by Professor Richard Trembath, executive director of King’s Health Partners, included clinicians, academics, patients and non-executive directors who selected twelve projects that demonstrated clinical academic innovation (using clinical research to bring new solutions to healthcare), benefits for patients, and collaborative working between teams across organisations.

Dr Richard Grocott-Mason, managing director of the Trust’s partnership with KHP, said: “The calibre of applicants for this important new scheme was exceptionally high and a real testament to the appetite teams across the partnership have for creating new models of care through innovation.

“Since 2017, our ambition has been to leverage the opportunity for collaboration offered across partner organisations to enable us to transform and improve patient care. These initiatives are another step forward in helping us realise this goal.”

Joy Godden, director of nursing and clinical governance at the Trust, and a member of the funding panel, added: “Teams at Royal Brompton and Harefield hospitals have been working closely with KHP for some time and the standard of these projects reflects the great benefits of harnessing the collective knowledge and expertise of our respective organisations.”  

Some examples of the projects that will be funded:

  • Predicting the risk of aortic coarctation in newborns: A study to determine how the risk of aortic coarctation, a congenital heart defect associated with a narrowing of the aorta, can be better predicted during the fetal stage.
  • Home monitoring of high risk cardiorespiratory paediatric patients: Development of an in-home monitoring system to enable clinical teams to observe blood oxygen levels (oxygen saturation) in high risk cardiac and respiratory patients remotely.
  • Establishing a national ‘Difficult Cystic Fibrosis Diagnosis’ (DCFD) service: Development of a Difficult Cystic Fibrosis Diagnosis service to improve clinical diagnosis.   
  • Enhancing patient recovery after cardiac surgery: Improved measures to promote recovery of patients undergoing cardiac surgery, with a focus on organ protection and acute kidney injury.
  • Developing a critical care competency and education package for allied health professionals (AHP): Appointment of an AHP partnership lead to work alongside existing AHP clinical leadership teams to focus on workforce development, education and training for allied health professionals.