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The demand for health services in England is both growing and changing in nature, yet resources are limited in their ability to respond to the scale and scope of need. As a result, the NHS is under increasing pressures to realise productivity gains, while continuing to deliver high quality care.

RAND Europe and the University of Manchester have been commissioned to conduct a study to examine the potential of innovation to respond to the challenges the NHS faces, and to help deliver value for money, efficient and effective services. 'Innovation' in this study refers to any product, technology or service that is new to the NHS, or applied in a new way, aimed at delivering affordable and improved care.

The learning we have gained adds considerable depth to the practical discussions presented above regarding how innovation can be first nurtured and then made meaningful and actionable in a variety of settings — this is important given the complexity of health innovation systems and the diversity of elements that need to interact and work together for the overall system to function effectively. We share insights related to skills, capabilities and leadership; motivations and accountabilities; information and evidence; relationships and networks; patient and public engagement; and funding and commissioning. We will develop these detailed learning points into a more systematic analysis as the research evolves.

The research is funded by the Department of Health Policy Research Programme, in close collaboration with NHS England and the Office of Life Sciences.

Research conducted by

The research described in this report was prepared for the National Health Service (NHS) and conducted by RAND Europe.

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