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UK SMEs can play a crucial role in meeting NHS challenges

Feb 04, 2016

Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has entered into a collaboration with a small specialist UK company. The aim of the project is to allow doctors and nurses -for the first time- to be alerted to every patient at risk of acute kidney injury, a condition that is currently linked to 100,000 deaths in England’s hospitals every year. This high impact project is an example of what can be successfully achieved when clinical knowledge is combined with innovation from a small to medium sized enterprise (SME). In some cases, hospitals may overlook this approach, favouring costly offshore software giants and their systems that favour a one fits all approach. However, forward thinking hospitals are now taking the opportunity to embrace a competitive marketplace. SMEs, which are seen by government ministers as crucial to economic growth, offer the NHS the means to create innovative solutions. When combined, these solutions can help address the NHS’s wider needs and its agenda for change. Therefore, the huge pool of knowledge in the SME community that has been operating to date in separate markets needs to be unmasked. The NHS has a vision for the future where SMEs are well placed to bring confidence to that larger programme by delivering immediately, learning quickly, and delivering improved patient outcomes. According to Donald Kennedy, Managing Director of Patientrack, the prize for making these partnerships work is too great to ignore. The NHS and the UK SME base represent two of the country’s most valuable assets, which through effective partnering can be not only mutually supportive, but can harness real innovation to make a very significant difference to the future of the NHS and the broader UK economy. At Thornton and Lowe, we recognise the high quality and valuable services small to medium sized enterprises can deliver and we support SMEs to bid for and win public sector contracts. We have designed a series of NHS specific tender training workshops, aimed at healthcare organisations bidding to CCGs/Local Authorities. Based on our experience of writing NHS tenders, Thornton & Lowe’s expert training team provide the knowledge, information and guidance to write a clear, concise, competitive and compelling bid. Our workshops provide a friendly, interactive learning environment as well as plenty of opportunities to have your questions answered. With an underlying theme of patient experience, the workshops cover:
  • Clinical delivery, governance and patient safety
  • Information governance and data protection
  • Patient pathway
  • Medicines management and waste management
  • Staffing - including recruitment, performance and retention
  • Information sharing and communication
  • Facilities - including premises and equipment
For more information or to book onto any of our courses, please visit here, get in touch with our head office on 01204 238 096 or email the team at

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