It was a privilege to be a member of the plenary panel at the NESTA event The Future of People Powered Health 2017, where I joined Geoff Mulgan (CEO of UnLtd), Kieran Boyle (CEO of the St Thomas and Guys Trust which co-hosted the event) and Michael MacDonnell (Strategy Director for NHS England). Our discussion covered a range of topics but the thread running through the whole discussion was the question of how great innovations which help people create their own wellbeing can be mainstreamed.
There seemed to be two inter-linked challenges to mainstreaming innovation. Social care and health money is tied up in services which are in many cases expensive and ineffective. There is very little money left to invest in something new and so commissioners need to believe there is a really good case for investment. The new approaches to unlocking people-powered health that we discussed had evidence of really good outcomes for people and in many cases saved public money. The challenge though is to persuade clinicians to recognise and accept evidence of quality and outcomes based largely upon the experiences of people. Randomised clinical trials are neither relevant nor possible for innovations help people use their strengths to design and deliver their own healthcare solutions.
Randomised clinical trials are neither relevant nor possible for innovations that help people use their strengths to design and deliver their own healthcare solutions
In the end it’s a question of trust. Can clinicians and other health commissioners stand back and allow the people they see as patients freedom to design their own solutions – solutions that may look nothing like a health service but let people live a full life nonetheless.
Sian’s session at People Powered Health http://ideas-hub.org.uk/ideas-hub/event-future-people-powered-health/