25 March 2011
How can we make things better for health in Bristol?
A unique exhibition, the first of its kind to be held in
Bristol, will showcase the outstanding health innovation
achievements in the city that have had a positive impact on
people's lives and offer a glimpse into the future at what new
developments might bring.
The Bristol Health Innovation Showcase is the first exhibition
from BRIG-H (Bristol Research and Innovation Group for
Health), a partnership of universities and NHS Trusts committed
to improving the health of people in Bristol and beyond through
research, innovation and closer collaboration.
The Showcase will take place at the University of the West of
England's conference centre on 30 March 2011 from 17:30 -
The event will provide an opportunity for professionals and
members of the public to see first hand 30 exciting innovations on
display which have been developed by members of the partnership.
Clinicians, researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs behind the
latest developments and innovations will be on hand to answer
questions and explain their inventions, new procedures and advances
in health services.
The BRIG-H partners are: The University of Bristol, University
of the West of England, Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health
Partnership NHS Trust, North Bristol NHS Trust, University
Hospitals Bristol NHS Trust, in association with Bristol City
Council, NHS North Somerset, and NHS South Gloucestershire.
Scientists, clinicians, and health executives from these
organisations have worked together to create new innovations and
processes that have benefited health in Bristol.
Deborah Evans, Chief Executive NHS Bristol and Chair, Bristol
Health Leadership Executive says, "We know that Bristol is regarded
as a beacon of innovation. Innovation in health is changing the
lives of patients and the city: inventions, research, new
companies, treatments, devices and tools are transforming the care
and quality of the lives of patients. This event is an ideal
opportunity to be inspired by examples of Bristol innovations that
have changed people's lives and talk to the people who have made it
Professor Richard Luxton (Director Institute of Bio-Sensing
Technology, UWE) says, "This event demonstrates how the partners
working together can make huge gains. We want to encourage other
researchers and clinicians to get involved in innovation and
applications for their research. There are many projects which
would not have happened without the expertise and innovation of
both universities, and the support of the NHS Trusts. We hope this
event will show just how much we have achieved together, and the
enormous potential there is in the city for further innovation and
health improvement in the city in the future."
The innovations on display range from medical innovations,
through to novel improvements to service delivery and community
health initiatives. Innovations on display include:
Adults with Asperger Syndrome: plugging the
service gap: The Bristol Autism Spectrum Service (BASS) was
established to fill the service vacuum for adults with Asperger
Syndrome who are unable to access support from mainstream services.
It has received national recognition as an example of best practice
and contributed to the government's strategy for adults with
autism. The service model is being replicated in other UK regions.
BASS facilitates assessment and diagnosis of Asperger Syndrome for
adults, provides a programme of post-diagnostic support and
provides training for mainstream providers. By plugging the service
gap for adults with Asperger Syndrome the new service helps to
improve mental wellbeing and life outcomes for individuals.
Training has been delivered to 500 health and social care
professionals, employment agencies and JobCentre Plus staff. The
project leaders from Bristol Autism Spectrum Service, AWP are: Dr
Ian Ensum, Matt Trerise, Annie Alexander, Amy Baddeley, Dr Rona
Aldridge, Dr Peter Carpenter, Simon Allen and Gemma Allen.
The TOBY trial: A new treatment pioneered by
Professor Marianne Thoresen (University of Bristol) with partners
North Bristol Trust and funded by the Medical Research Council,
Olympic Medical and SPARKS aims to prevent brain damage caused by
lack of oxygen (Asphyxia) at birth by giving cooling treatment
within the first six hours of life. The novel treatment lowers the
affected babies' body temperature to 33.5°C and induces hypothermia
for 72 hours before gradually rewarming the baby in intensive care.
After clinical trials the treatment was introduced in Bristol's two
neonatal intensive care units in 2006 and 60% of babies now survive
without significant injury compared to 30% previously in Bristol.
In May 2010 the treatment was recommended by NICE for asphyxiated
babies. Professor Thoresen is now working with Professor John
Dingley (Swansea University) and University Hospitals Bristol NHS
Foundation Trust to improve the prognosis for these babies even
further by adding inhaled Xenon gas to the cooling regime.
OdoReader - Diagnosing bacterial infections at
the bedside - OdoReader is a prototype device which accurately and
rapidly identifies disease causing bacteria in diarrhoea such as
the bacterium Clostridium difficile, which is highly infectious and
causes a severe form of diarrhoea. OdoReader captures and analyses
the chemicals in the smell of the diarrhoea and is able to give an
accurate diagnosis within 20 minutes. This new prototype device is
robust and reliable and can help prevent the spread of infection.
There are plans to develop similar devices for other infections and
this device is ideal for use in the developing world. The project
leaders are Professor Chris Probert, (University of Bristol) and
Professor Norman Ratcliffe (UWE) collaborating with North Bristol
NHS Trust and University Hospitals Bristol NHS Trust. OdoReader is
being developed with the support of the Wellcome Trust and will be
ready for launch in 2013.
The BRIG-H consortium will also be hosting a Health Innovation
Challenge during the afternoon before the exhibition, bringing
together scientists, researchers, clinicians, patient
representatives and others from Bristol, to generate new ideas and
facilitate collaborations and initiatives to improve health in the