Grand Challenge

Later this year, the North East LEP will launch their Grand Challenge initiative, which is a £20m Smart Specialisation community-focussed competition. The Grand Challenge will be healthcare themed and is likely to focus upon health sub-themes, each with a number of specific goals and challenges attached.

The AHSN will play a fundamental role in the delivery of the Grand Challenge in the following areas: –

Scoping of the Sub-Themes: Since its inception, the AHSN has been working collaboratively with the North East Quality Observatory System (NEQOS) with the intention of driving forward innovation with regard to informatics, the sharing of anonymised electronic data as well as a collaborative approach to assist with the implementation of NICE Guidance.  Moreover, we commissioned NEQOS to produce a Population Health and Healthcare Surveillance Report of the North East and North Cumbria region, and the epidemiological evidence presented in this portrays health and healthcare within the region as well as highlighting the strengths and challenges. We believe that some of these challenges could be highlighted as sub-themes for the Grand Challenge.  In relation to this, we are in the process of mapping some of the health episode statistical data versus known skills and economic sources, in order to ascertain whether or not this provides us with a stronger correlation between poor health outcomes and lower economic stability.

Development of the Competition: The AHSN is aware that the Grand Challenge will be a public procurement based competition, and we will consider the most appropriate delivery mechanism. The Grand Challenge requires match funding of £10million and the sourcing of these monies from the private sector will be a major priority of the AHSN, going forward.

Engagement with Core Member Organisations and Other Stakeholders for the Purposes of Entering the Competition: In its capacity as an ‘honest-broker’, the AHSN will deliver a series of public engagement events including both public and private organisations from both the UK and overseas. The AHSN wishes to play a fundamental role in the overall management of the Grand Challenge and we will not be bidding for the individual calls.

Contractual Responsibility for the Delivery of the Competition: Together with its partner organisation, RTC North Limited, we will position ourselves to project manage the Grand Challenge in terms of the management of the European Funds as well as the performance management of the beneficiaries.