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Innovation scores 10 in NHS Supply Chain’s drive towards better patient led outcomes

Monday 21 February 2011

NHS Supply Chain introduces ten innovative products to help NHS staff make the best
available use of technological breakthroughs in the health field

NHS Supply Chain has just launched the first ten products onto contract through its new online tool Innovation Scorecard.

A range of products have been added to NHS Supply Chain's fast-track evaluation process Innovation Scorecard. Following an initial application, evaluation and assessment, the products demonstrated real benefits and have been introduced far more quickly, either as pilot contracts or as additions to existing frameworks. Previously products which would take up to five years to be brought to market are now available to NHS Trusts in less than a year, helping Trusts improve efficiency or reduce costs at a time of financial pressure.

The range includes home birthing medical packs and internal wall cladding to prevent infections.

Elaine Alsop, NHS Supply Chain’s executive buyer said: "The first ten products introduced are not radically new, but each one offers significant improvements for patient care, with NHS Supply Chain providing a simple way for healthcare professionals to access them. These are the first ten to be successfully trialled and more are on the way - which is an exciting development in our aim to deliver improved care and financial savings."

The Innovation Scorecard, developed collaboratively by the National Innovation Centre (NIC) and NHS Supply Chain, first launched in October 2009 to encourage suppliers to register innovative products for consideration through an online portal. This provided NHS Supply Chain with a clear process for evaluating and introducing innovative products and has enabled suppliers of all sizes to raise awareness of their products based on their concept, value and capacity, with the ultimate aim of adoption by trusts through our contracts.

One of the companies taking advantage of the Innovation Scorecard was Vision®, successfully launching two of its products in the first ten NHS Supply Chain has brought to market.

George Sutherland, CEO of Sutherland Health Group, commented: “Many of the current clinical methods used within the NHS have limited accuracy, are time consuming and contribute to higher costs.

"Our innovative diagnostic product Vision Vaginal Infection Swab has a high accuracy rate and will save the NHS much needed time and money. With new infection episodes for women seen at the Genito-Urinary Medicine clinics in 2008 reaching 90,000 for Bacterial Vaginosis alone, this device will have a direct benefit for the patient and professional as the professional is able to initiate treatment immediately in one visit."

The innovation scorecard process ensures that NHS Supply Chain is working towards the much larger initiative set up by the Department of Health's Quality Innovation Productivity and Prevention (QIPP) programme.

Joanna Timmerman, NHS Supply Chain’s Managing Director Theatre Business Unit said: “The Innovation Scorecard gave us an assessment tool to see whether new products are innovative by looking at their concept, value and capacity.

“We have always encouraged innovation, but now we have an easier process which allows even SMEs an opportunity to introduce new products to the NHS. Tournistrip™ was one of these products, designed to reduce cost, improve efficiency and to be a real benefit to patient care.”

With over 100 applications now processed, some products have been evaluated by clinicians at NHS Supply Chain’s Task Force programme. Members with the relevant clinical background, are invited to trial the products in their Trust and provide feedback to the task force and innovation team. This provides an ideal opportunity to begin promoting products prior to any scheduled Marketing via NHS Supply Chain’s New Product Showcase and adds support to the adoption process. In 2010, NHS Supply Chain ran nearly 50 different customer groups with over 600 members across the United Kingdom.

Elaine Alsop added: "We're really pleased with the response we have had to the Innovation Scorecard. It’s a great chance to be able to show that NHS Supply Chain is encouraging changes and development to products which can really contribute to improving patient care."

To find out more about innovation at NHS Supply Chain please visit: www.supplychain.nhs.uk/innovation or email innovation@supplychain.nhs.uk. The following innovative products have been introduced through the Innovation Scorecard and those which have been established have already reached sales totaling more than £100,000.

Tournistrip™
The first innovative product to be introduced in July 2010 was a disposable tourniquet designed to combat the risk of hospital acquired infections. Two junior doctors found that tourniquets – a strap used around a patient’s arm while taking blood samples – were being used over and over again and were a prime place for cross infection to occur.
Reusable tourniquets are typically used for around 40 million procedures each year in the NHS, and the doctors found through their own investigation that a considerable amount of bacteria grew on them. Consequently, they began developing a practical single-use tourniquet to overcome the problem.

Bailey’s nail nipper
Most podiatry clinics treat 18 patients per day equating to 2,700 separate cutting actions per week. Over time, poor quality nail cutters can cause injury to the hand and wrist. Bailey Instruments worked alongside clinicians to develop an exciting new range of disposable podiatry instrument packs. This innovative product with its shock absorbing, streamlined handles and precision honed blades has been designed to combat RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury) a condition caused by excessive strain on the hand and wrist which threatens the working capacity of podiatrists.
In a clinical trial, seven podiatrists out of a staff of 20 were diagnosed with RSI in the wrist or upper limb. Within three weeks of starting to use this patented nail nipper, all staff were able to return to full workloads. In addition, the nail nippers come sterile, saving health authorities money on reprocessing costs and offering vulnerable patients surety against cross infection.

SportVis™
Added as an extension to an existing range in October, SportVis™ is used for treating Grade 1 and 2 ankle sprains. It is administered via a peri-articular injection into the site of injury using the fanning technique. This helps to spread SportVis™ over a large surface area within the injury site to ensure optimal interactions with the torn ligaments. Clinical studies have shown that SportVis™ gave the majority of patients a faster return to pain-free and disability-free sporting and daily activities - 11 versus 17 days.
By interacting with the injured ligament, a better quality of healing is possible as SportVis™ is most likely able to strengthen the ankle’s ligament during the healing process and reduce scar tissue formation.

Cygnetic® surgical instrument handle and blades
The unique Cygnetic® handle is designed to assist the OR nurse with safe and easy blade attachment and removal before, during and after the procedure. By lifting the lever to the vertical position the main body slides back allowing the blade to be simply placed into the handle. The lever can then be pushed back towards the main body of the handle until it engages with an audible click. The blade is now firmly locked into the usage position. If the blade is ready to change or in order to dispose of the final contaminated sharp after the end of the procedure, the process is simply reversed. Once the lever is back in the vertical position and the blade unlocked, it can be dropped without additional handling into an appropriate sharps counter or box. The handle can now be sent to the decontamination services department with the other instruments where it can be stripped down into three component parts for cleaning and reassembly, ready for the next procedure.

Vision® Vaginal Infection Swab (VIS)
Vaginal infections are a widespread problem among women of all ages. One in three (33%) women will develop Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) at some point of their lives.
Almost 50% of infection cases have no symptoms of BV. Vision® VIS is an easy to use professional diagnostic swab used by clinicians to check women for Vaginitis, in order to detect Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) and Trichomoniasis.

Vision® ALD
The Vision® ALD is an innovative self test which detects the leaking of amniotic fluid over a continuous period of time. Risk of amniotic fluid leak is higher than normal during the 48 hours after amniocentesis tests, or when encountering unidentified wetness, or among women with a history of Premature Membrane Rupture. This device works by attaching a special panty liner to underwear and if wetness is experienced, the strip will reveal whether the wetness is either urine leakage or amniotic fluid leakage.

RenehaVis™
RenehaVis was designed for the relief from osteoarthritis of the knee symptoms by providing support and lubrication to the knee joint. It is an innovative injection that is made from two clear solutions of sterile sodium yaluronate in a phosphate buffered saline, contained in a two chamber pre-filled syringe for single intra-articular injection into the synovial space of the joint. The dosage regimen is injection into the affected synovial joint space once a week for up to three injections depending on the severity of the degenerative change to the knee joint. In trials it has demonstrated pain relief for up to four months for patients with grade one to three medial compartment osteoarthritis.

LeGoo Vessel Occlusion Gel
LeGoo© is the latest product to be added onto contract via Innovation Scorecard and was designed to be used in vascular surgeries, LeGoo™ is a water-soluble, low viscosity haemostat gel which forms a plug at body temperature and conforms to any vascular geometry, temporarily stenting the vessel to facilitate constructing the anastomosis and allows for suturing directly through the gel. Once the procedure is completed, LeGoo ™ is dissolved via the application of ice, reducing the gel back to a liquid which passes through the microcirculation and is excreted in urine.

Bio-Pax®
An all in one system for home Births combining healthcare consumables and waste containers which reduce costs, time, storage and waste.

Bioclad PVC Cladding
Bioclad is an antimicrobial wall cladding product that acts as a hygienic and maintenance free covering for internal walls. The system is in a wide range of sectors in the UK from food production to educational and now in healthcare facilities.

-Ends-

Media enquiries:
Liz Justice
07739777563
elizabeth.justice@supplychain.nhs.uk
Jayesha Mistry
07738 071826
jayesha.mistry@supplychain.nhs.uk

Notes to editors

About NHS Supply Chain
NHS Supply Chain is operated by DHL as Agent of the NHS Business Services Authority since 2006. It supports the National Health Service (NHS) and other healthcare organisations in England and Wales by providing end to end supply chain solutions.

The organisation was formed from the NHS Logistics Authority and parts of the NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency (NHS PASA). NHS Supply Chain aims to provide over £1 billion of savings to the NHS by 2016.

NHS Supply Chain manages the sourcing, delivery and supply of healthcare products and food for over 1,000 NHS trusts and healthcare organisations. It provides a single point of access to over 620,000 products ranging from bandages to sutures, from gloves to implants, and even diagnostic equipment such as MRI scanners.

Its management of the procurement process negates an NHS organisation’s need to tender through the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU). Costs can also be reduced through its one-route solution that consolidates all products onto one invoice and delivery – this saves up to £1 per product in back office administration costs and removes up to 40 deliveries going into a trust compared with ordering goods
separately.

To ensure that its products are fit for today’s healthcare market, NHS Supply Chain works with suppliers of all sizes to ensure its range embraces high quality and innovative products; and engages with clinicians, the Department of Health and academic institutions to make sure that it is aware of the current requirements and latest developments in clinical practice.

NHS Supply Chain’s product areas include:

  • theatres
  • dental
  • audiology
  • catering, including food
  • infection control
  • orthopaedics
  • rehabilitation
  • capital equipment, including finance and maintenance

Based in Alfreton, Derbyshire, UK, the business employs around 2,400 staff in eight
locations. http://www.supplychain.nhs.uk.