How we helped a health board identify & engage innovative clinical suppliers

How a health board engages with supply chains is critical to delivering improved health services. This is particularly important with significant increases in patient demand.

Relevant suppliers identified from across the UK
Suppliers submitting applications following engagement with SimplyDo
Suppliers selected for funding awards
SimplyDo were incredibly supportive throughout our market engagement process. We're delighted to now have two fantastic Welsh companies that we're able to work with to develop their ideas.
Zoe Hilton, Innovation Program Manager, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board


Connecting specialist suppliers with endoscopy challenges


Limited amount of suitably-qualified suppliers with endoscopy technology solutions
Difficulty identifying and engaging suppliers during market engagement procurement phase
Busy suppliers reluctance to invest time into complex procurement processes when already near capacity

A challenging issue facing the NHS is growing waiting lists. This is particularly difficult in endoscopy with an estimated 30,000 waiting for procedures including cancer diagnosis. 

As a result, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board (CAVUHB) launched an Endoscopy Challenge funded by a £750,000 grant from the Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) Challenge Fund. This Challenge was looking for innovative approaches to accelerate delivery of endoscopy procedures to improve access and reduce waiting times.

The initial approach to engage potential suppliers was using a Prior Information Notice. However, the response did not provide the anticipated range of suppliers. As a result, SimplyDo was engaged to help identify and engage specialist suppliers with relevant endoscopy-related products.


Supporting market engagement through targeted multi-channel engagement


Identifying hard-to-find endoscopy-related suppliers using SimplyDo’s robust industry search process
Engaging targeted suppliers with novel capabilities using our proven personalised multi-channel engagement approach
Working with CAVUHB to ensure a fully compliant end-to-end process using Innovation Partnership procurement

The primary purpose was to identify and engage suppliers with novel capabilities relevant to reducing endoscopy waiting lists. This was under an accelerated timescale (i.e. 30 days). As a result, SimplyDo fully managed the process to significantly reduce the time required by the already busy CAVUHB personnel.

The identification stage involved in-depth market research using the SimplyDo product industry intelligence capabilities. This enables access to multiple structured and unstructured data sources to effectively identify specialist suppliers.  Additional research was provided by our in-house research team.

The engagement stage involved targeted engagement with suppliers. Our multi-channel approach was essential in ensuring the opportunity wasn’t missed. This involved working closely with CAVUHB including full compliance with PCR 2015.


Sourcing specialist medical suppliers with less time and effort


Engaging a more diverse and more suitable supplier base for the endoscopy challenge
Demonstrating an innovative and proactive approach to supplier discovery
Showcasing CAVUHB and CCR as leaders in procurement reform in health and care

Following the process, two applicants from Wales subsequently received funding and support to develop their projects. CanSense (from Swansea) is developing a blood based test to help prioritise patients on the endoscopy waiting list and reduce time to diagnosis. IQ Endoscopes (from Chepstow) is developing sustainable single use flexible endoscopes that replace the need for time consuming and expensive decontamination processes. 

This project demonstrated how a health board can collaborate with external partners to deliver innovation. However, the role of SimplyDo was an important one in ensuring the identification and engagement of novel endoscopy-related suppliers.

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