Scottish NHS bodies collaborate with academia and industry to develop new patient pathways

Written by Ruaraidh Gilmour on 20 September 2022 in News

Memorandum of understanding includes health service, drug companies and universities

Credit: Julie McMurry/Pixabay

Scottish NHS bodies have signed a collaboration agreement universities and industry partners that it hopes will help expand clinical research and improve population health.  

NHS Golden Jubilee’s National Centre for Sustainable Delivery, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, the University of Glasgow, AstraZeneca UK and Lenus Health have signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).  

The agreement intends to enable testing of new patient pathways and digital technologies to enable earlier diagnosis and treatment, enabling large-scale trials and studies in Scotland, collecting evidence to assess the effectiveness of these new clinical management processes, and scaling up the most successful across NHS Scotland.

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It is hoped that the partnership will improve patient outcomes, reduce waiting times, and change clinical practice. Initially, the focus will be on long-term conditions.

The new collaboration between NHS Scotland, academia and industry partners aims to offer all patients with chronic illnesses enrolment in studies and trials of new pathways and therapies while creating opportunities to expand the Scottish economy via the provision of new healthcare methods.  

The first project being considered for rollout across NHS Scotland is the Optimised Pathway for Early Identification of Heart Failure in the Community (OPERA), which was first trialled during the pandemic. Patients attended a single clinic appointment, undergoing a bank of tests including electrocardiogram heart tracing, echocardiogram ultrasound heart scan and blood-based biomarkers.  

During the trial, the waiting list for heart failure diagnostic tests was reduced from over 12 months to six weeks.  

Professor Jann Gardner, chief executive of NHS Golden Jubilee, said: “The national Centre for Sustainable Delivery at NHS Golden Jubilee has been set up specifically to renew and transform healthcare services across NHS Scotland and is uniquely positioned to deliver transformation programmes at scale through the Accelerated National Innovation Adoption pathway.  This collaboration provides opportunities to improve patient care, employ new technologies and medicines, while addressing the impact of health inequalities and social barriers to provide a more sustainable future healthcare system.”


About the author

Ruaraidh Gilmour is a reporter at PublicTechnology sister publication Holyrood, where a version of this story first appeared. He tweets as @Ruaraidh0.


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