The NHS Innovation Accelerator (NIA) and DigitalHealth.London are teaming up on the Discussing Diversity blog series, shining a spotlight on individuals who are drivers of diversity in health innovation. Innovators, NHS leaders, AHSN representatives and other voices in the sector will be sharing their personal experiences as well as exploring what we can all be doing to encourage a more inclusive space for supporting health innovators.
DigitalHealth.London believes that diversity and inclusion is central to the long-term success of innovation and transformation within the NHS. We are pleased that of the companies we have supported to date through our Accelerator and Launchpad programmes, 21 percent are Black, Asian or Ethnic Minority founded/majority founded organisations, 23 percent identify as women-majority or equal men-women owned and 2 percent are partly or majority owned by a person with a disability. But we want to do more to ensure our Accelerator programme is inclusive and we are providing support to health innovators from all backgrounds.
The NHS Innovation Accelerator is committed to increasing the diversity of our Fellows, and to building our innovators’ expertise so they can support the NHS in its efforts to tackle health inequalities to protect those at greatest risk. To date, 32 percent of our Fellows have identified as women and 15 percent have been of Black, Asian or Ethnic Minority descent, but we know this is not good enough. Our aim is to ensure that innovators from all backgrounds feel encouraged to apply for our accelerator, that our assessment process is fair and free of bias, and that accelerating the adoption of innovation is driven by a commitment to understand, anticipate and overcome barriers to equity in access, experience and outcomes.
The first blog in the series will be from Warsame (Sami) Nur, an NHS Innovation Accelerator Fellow who is Director of Strategic Development and Partnership at Feebris, a company on the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme. Coming next week, Sami will discuss his experience as a black man working in the health and social care system.