In this blog, Programme Manager Claire Horton, explains the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Innovation Hub’s role in supporting the Urgent and Emergency Care Innovation Award.

The Urgent and Emergency Care (UEC) Innovation Award was first set up in 2019 with funding from NHS England/Improvement, with a view to testing innovative solutions to reduce demand. The pressures experienced by urgent care are clearly not new but have been exacerbated considerably by the emergence of COVID-19, making resolving the challenges more imperative.

The UEC workstream at the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Integrated Care System in collaboration with the SYB Innovation Hub, opened a call for proposals to address UEC pressures in September 2021. The aim was to fund up to five projects which would offer innovators the chance to test ideas around the following priorities from the NHS Long Term Plan, before wider adoption of successful initiatives throughout the system:

  • Integrated urgent care – signposting patients to the most clinically appropriate service.
  • In Hospital admission avoidance – development of Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC).
  • Discharge – to support the implementation of the new discharge guidance and model.

10 proposals were received which were assessed by an award panel of eight individuals drawn from around the region and which included representation from NHSEngland/Improvement, the NIHR Applied Research Collaborative, the SYB UEC workstream and Healthwatch. Following two rounds of assessment, four projects were funded. The teams will use the funding to cover activities such as, staff costs (existing and new), training, purchase of equipment, marketing and communications.

In addition, the Innovation Hub  engaged the NIHR ARC Urgent and Emergency Care team at the University of Sheffield School of Health & Related Research (ScHARR) to support the teams to evaluate the impact of their projects. The project teams will be able to tap into the ARCs expertise and in turn, the ARC will help the teams to focus on what is relevant and achievable within the timeframe of their projects.

At the end of the 12 months funding, each team will report on what they achieved. An overarching report will be prepared by the ARC team, capturing the learnings of the scheme, the aim of which be to develop an overarching framework to assess the impact and realisation of benefits amongst the 2021 awardees

The four projects.

Title Team Project summary
Frailty Virtual Ward Facilitating Care Closer to Home Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust To implement a Frailty Virtual Ward which aims to increase the opportunity for same-day emergency care (SDEC;) provide earlier supported discharge, reducing delayed transfers of care and offer early access for primary and community care colleagues.
Discharge Medicine Delivery Service Bassetlaw CCG

Royal Voluntary Service

This project aims to work with the Third Sector to facilitate the provision of prescribed medication to speed up discharges from hospital.
Moving with Dignity Pilot Doncaster CCG

Doncaster LA

Introduction of new innovative techniques and equipment in the safe moving and handling of people to support more timely discharge from hospital and reduce the number of delays in people securing care.
Social and Wellbeing Hub at Sheffield Walk in Centre One Medical Group Implementation of a social and wellbeing hub at Sheffield Walk in Centre. The Hub will work in partnership with primary and community care, emergency departments, mental health services, social care and the voluntary sector. The aim is to assist in alleviating some of the pressures in managing the wider determinants of health.

 If you would like to know more about the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Innovation Hub or if you have examples of innovative work that you have been involved in, we would love to hear from you. You can submit your stories via our website or contact the team via