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What is the role of SHIL? The short answer is, we support innovation across NHS Scotland; the long answer is we work in partnership with NHS Scotland to identify, protect, develop and commercialise healthcare innovations to improve patient care.

Our strapline, and organisation descriptor, capture the essence of what the team work to achieve each and every day. Yet, they are simplistic descriptions of what actually takes place behind the scenes at SHIL.

So we are excited to be launching a new monthly blog – providing a window into our organisation and a chance to learn more about the team, what they do and the realities of translating innovative ideas into real products and services that make a positive difference to patient care and a financial return to NHS.

Over the coming months, we will be giving you more access and insight into:

  • Our team – with a diverse range of background and skills, from intellectual property, regulatory affairs, funding, product development, communications and project management – lots of industry expertise resides in SHIL. We will delve deeper into these skills and how they are used to support the acceleration of innovative ideas.
  • Our processes – it can be a long road from submission of an idea to development of a fully viable commercial product; and as time pressures can be one of the biggest barriers to bringing an idea or innovation forward, SHIL takes care of the day-to-day workload on behalf of health professionals. We will go behind the scenes to see what is involved in protecting ideas, securing funding, identifying appropriate partners or manufacturers, developing prototypes, testing, refining and preparing for launch. It’s not a simple process and there can be many obstacles along the way, so we will explore each stage in more detail and demonstrate the collaborative effort needed to get a product from idea to market.
  • Our products – most often it’s the final commercial products you will see, but an exciting pipeline of innovative new ideas are always being worked on by the SHIL team. We will give you a glimpse of some of the new products being developed, and our plans for launching onto the market.
  • Our services – an expert range of innovation services are available to NHS Scotland, but the landscape is always changing and the team works to ensure the right expertise is available to support innovation across NHS Scotland. We will look at the new services being developed at SHIL to keep pace with scientific and technological developments. 

SHIL doesn’t work alone, and ensuring opportunities to reach out and engage with a diverse range of stakeholders across the health innovation ecosystem is crucial; so we will also go behind the scenes with our communications team gaining more insight into the events, materials and promotional activity being planned to promote not only SHIL but the broader value of health innovation.

Look out for our first behind the scenes feature in February; and if you are interested in a particular area of our work, get in touch on and we will cover in a future feature.

For now, you can access lots of useful resources to inspire your health innovation journey, and stay up to date with the latest news, events and information @ScotHealthInno.

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