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Innovation all starts with an idea, no matter how big or small, and with having somewhere (or someone…) to be ‘a test-bed’ for ideas

Monday, 16 August, 2021
Innovation all starts with an idea, no matter how big or small, and with having somewhere (or someone…) to be ‘a test-bed’ for ideas

In our latest ‘Inside Northumbria’ blog we meet our new director of innovation, Andrew Edmunds.

 

I feel very privileged to have the role of innovation director at a trust that is already outstanding and constantly striving and pushing the boundaries to be the best. That gives me an excellent starting point!

 

I see my role, which I began in April this year, as being someone for people to go with their ideas, a ‘first port of call’ – and will do what I can to help these ideas become a reality.

 

Innovation all starts with an idea, no matter how big or small, and with having somewhere (or someone…) to be ‘a test-bed’ for ideas. Ideas that drive quality improvement, shape clinical advancements or have a commercial benefit, as well as those that support patient and staff experience. Northumbria has many examples of this, from setting up Fleet Solutions, or manufacturing PPE, to AI to help us manage the flows of patients between our hospital sites.

 

I am truly inspired by the expertise and dedication of colleagues that work in the NHS and feel incredibly proud to be part of such a respected organisation in Northumbria Healthcare.

 

A bit about my background…I am originally from Newcastle and am married to Rebecca. We have a two-year-old son, Charlie, and we are expecting our second child any day now. So our sleep patterns and routines are about to be turned upside-down, but we are looking forward to those crazy first few weeks.

 

I have always worked in healthcare and started off my career in London where I worked in the civil service in a mixture of roles for 11 years in the Department of Health and the Cabinet Office. This included working in minister’s private offices and is where I met Rebecca – so something good came of it!

 

Being honest, I missed living in the North East and increasingly felt disconnected from what was happening on the front line. As well as me deciding I wanted to work in a healthcare trust, Rebecca and I felt that we didn’t want to bring up our children in London. In late 2019 I was lucky to get that opportunity to move home, taking up a role at Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which was an excellent chance to bridge across from Whitehall to a frontline organisation.

 

As we all know unwinding from work and relaxing wherever possible is very important. One of my hobbies is cycling and our region is just the best place to enjoy it – even it is just for a few miles with a toddler on the back! I am also really enjoying being back near our families and trying to appreciate my spare time as much as I can before we welcome baby number two. More often than not this includes TV and films, where really I’m just happy to watch anything that is not CBeebies, which of course now may become even more of a challenge!

 

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