What happens when you only have 45 minutes to network with key decision makers attending Guy’s and St Thomas’ Business Planning event

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Dee Dinneen is a Project Coordinator for the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme.

Dee Dinneen is a Project Coordinator for the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme. In her first blog Dee reflects on an important engagement piece she helped to organise for the Accelerator companies. 

Ten SMEs on the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator were getting excited at the prospect of meeting key decision makers to showcase their innovations to the Guy’s and St Thomas’ Business Planning event on 3rd November, in the grade II listed Governor’s Hall.

Against the backdrop of nineteenth century patterned wallpaper, 11 Health & Technologies, Circular Wave, Cupris, DefinitiveDx, Lumeon, MedShr, MumoActive, Perfect Ward, Physitrack and SIME Diagnostics all set up to demonstrate their ground-breaking innovations.

The audience consisted of general managers, clinical directors, department leads and healthcare professionals.

It was great to see some familiar faces, including Tim Hanlon, Chief Pharmacist and Clinical Director of Pharmacy and Medicines Optimisation, who previously joined our panel at the “Meet the Expert – trusts as decision makers” event in September, and Ian Abbs, Chief Medical Officer and a great supporter of the programme, as well as being a mentor and an Advisory Board member. A flurry of introductions and an energetic discussion followed.

Reflecting on the session, George Ulmann, Operations Director, of Medshr, said, “The event was a great opportunity to meet clinicians and managers at Guy’s and St Thomas’ and hear first-hand what their priorities and problems are to establish how we might be able to support them.”

James Foxlee, Director and Co-Founder, of Circular Wave agreed, “We managed to have several great conversations in 45 minutes. This is what is brilliant about the Accelerator, having access to the potential users of our technologies and getting their feedback. Time really well spent!”

Critically an intense, but in-depth session like this gives these companies the foot in the door they need to start conversations with decision makers about how their digital solutions can benefit staff and patients.

I was delighted by the unexpected, but positive and proactive interest, and an open invitation from a trust like Guys’ and St Thomas’, which approached us to exhibit. I drew four key lessons from the day, including:

  1. The diversity of roles at the networking events, such as this, must be an important feature going forward.
  2. It highlights the fact that any member of an organisation can be a digital champion and influence change.
  3. It is useful to share briefing information about the cohort companies to decision makers prior to the event.
  4. Companies are getting better at articulating the specific healthcare problem they would like to solve, followed by their business solution and an innovation to address it.

This type of engagement and willingness to explore alternative solutions is exactly what the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator is set to stir within NHS organisations.

We hope that this will be the first of many invitations to showcase the range of innovative healthcare solutions of the cohort in NHS organisations, as we head into 2017 and beyond.

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