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Adoption and spread of innovation in the NHS

Free event
This is a past event, catch up below

Ensuring the adoption and spread of innovation is a challenge in any health system, but anecdotal evidence suggests that the English NHS finds it particularly challenging.  In this online event we discussed the findings from eight case studies that demonstrate the successful spread of innovation.  

The discussion focused on the effective approaches to supporting adoption and spread, which includes: 

  • introduction of new technologies 

  • more proactive intervention

  • changes to staff roles

  • greater engagement of patients in their care

  • meeting a different underlying need.


A total of 15 academic health science networks (AHSNs) were established in 2013 to identify and spread health innovations. Six networks – the East Midlands; Kent, Surrey and Sussex; the North West Coast; South London; the West of England; Yorkshire & Humber – commissioned The King’s Fund to write a report looking at the adoption and spread of innovation in the NHS. 

All 15 AHSNs were invited to propose examples of successful spread of innovation for inclusion in the report, and we selected eight case studies that we thought best illustrated the effective approaches to supporting adoption and spread and also the challenges faced by innovators.  

The paper aims to make a pragmatic contribution to the discussion of what can be done to facilitate faster adoption and spread of innovation given the current configuration of the NHS.

Watch the discussion


  • Ben Collins Photo

    Ben Collins

    Former Projects Director
  • Tara Donnelly photo

    Tara Donnelly

    Chief Executive, Health Innovation Network
  • Mike Hannay Photo

    Professor Mike Hannay

    Managing Director, East Midlands Academic Health Science Network
  • Liz Mear Photo

    Dr Liz Mear

    Chief Executive, The Innovation Agency