The Primary Care Innovation Centre April 2023 Edition:

“April advances towards a physical space”

By Liz Leggott, Project Manager



Welcome to the April Blog! I’ve already eaten three Easter eggs so I’m well into that at the moment!

A lot of things happening still as the testing continues into April – I felt that it was important to extend the testing period if it meant that we were able to increase engagement and involvement with Primary Care colleagues.

We had our first Breaking Bad News facilitated session at the end of March.  Delivering training on the fundamentals of using the SPIKES method to break bad news to patients in a sensitive yet effective way and using the Re:Course AI scenario to help embed the learning.  We had a fantastic delivery of the education and Scott Martin from Re:Course introduced the scenario to the group.  The group then went and had 30 minutes to use the software applying the learning to the scenario (which was also built around SPIKES).

Feedback was positive, the main comment was that with this particular topic it may be more beneficial to GPs who had only recently qualified, as this group had honed their skills through real life practice already.  We aim to test this further with other more clinical based scenarios with GPs and Physician Associates.

I’m working on further engagement with our Rotherham GP Dr Rao; we’re hoping to set up a day with facilitated learning sessions, an introduction to the software and some more immersive, hands-on experiences to see if her peers agree that this could be the future for learning experiences.  I’m excited to see their response and reaction to it.

I’ve got a couple of the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme (CEP) sessions under my belt now and I think it’s fair to say that I’m surrounded by likeminded people who just want to do something good.  I’ve managed to connect with a couple of different people with different backgrounds and projects who have been supportive and interested to understand what we’re trying to do.  I did my first LEAN Canvas exercise this week…. Yeah, I had to Google it too! It’s basically a very quick, lean, to the point look at what the business I am trying to create looks like, asking questions of it like:

  • Who are the users of the product, who are the customers, are they different?
  • What are your costs? Is the first version of your product fit for purpose, how will it be tested?
  • What are your income streams and how will this make money, does it need to make money, is it not for profit?

It feels like this programme is something that you get out what you put in and if you’re not going to throw yourself into it and contribute you might be missing an opportunity.  So here goes!

I presented the project and the work we have done so far to the Pharmacy Stakeholder Forum Meeting this month which I think caused to some interest and excitement, I received a couple of offers of support and interest in seeing if/how we get more pharmacy involved in the testing so I’m hoping I can take advantage of those offers.

March saw our quarterly Oversight & Governance Board and our Stakeholder Group meetings which were both positive; I got some direction and decisions about the first iteration of the Innovation Centre in the form of a building.  The decision to scope out the costs to fit out the second floor of the Sheffield Arena on the Olympic Legacy Park (OLP) was agreed, it will probably mean that I need to look at further funding to do the actual work but I’m happy to do so.  We have a strong case for why we need to do this.

Equally conversations have begun with Sheffield Hallam about the next iteration of the centre sharing a space with them and their simulated teaching activity which would be a more permanent presence on the OLP.  It is felt that we should have more than one location for the centre but with this one in Sheffield we can cement relationships, not only with the higher educational institutes but also with research and development teams already resident on the park and we’d be in a place where it’s attracting a lot of investment that we could potentially capitalise on.  I think we have to see where the newly forming relationships take us and where the evaluation of the testing dictates what is required of the centre, what form it takes and where it lives.

So, what’s planned for this month?  Apart from more easter eggs!!

  • Continuing to work on the idea of a GP on Call simulator.
  • Continue to develop the 360VR and Nurse clinic simulator for the Primary Care Module with SHU.
  • Looking to see if we can replicate the GP On call Simulator but from the point of view from a reception post.
  • Continue with the two other Breaking Bad News Sessions booked.
  • Create another hands-on session with our Rotherham GP using OMS and Re:Course AI.
  • Continue with discussions about what the first Innovation Centre site will look like.
  • Explore additional co-locations.
  • Continue to try and raise the profile of the project and continue to absorb what I can from the CEP.

The project maintains momentum and gathers more interested followers.   I’m still keen to see in which direction this goes; will it do what it needs to do?  Will Primary Care accept and adopt it with open arms?   Will anyone want to explore working in the centre and with the new technology enhanced learning tools?  These and more questions buzz around my head.

I hope that you all manage to enjoy a little break this month; enjoy the rest of April whatever your plans are.

Thank you for reading and following the progression, its always appreciated!