The South West Peninsula Academic Health Science Network brings together partners from all over the South West

South West Peninsula Academic Health Science Network designation announced

NHS England has confirmed the designation of the South West Peninsula Academic Health Science Network.

The South West Peninsula AHSN is one of 15 designated across England with the task of bringing together the wealth of experience, knowledge and skills in the region to improve the health and wellbeing of the 2.2 million people living in Somerset, Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Chairman Dr Andrew Vallance-Owen said: “Creation of this network presents a unique opportunity to pull together the inspiring and cutting edge innovation and research in pockets across our region so that knowledge, skills and best clinical practice can be shared, and adopted across the peninsula.

“Building on the successful partnerships within our region, we want to strengthen links with industry and develop a more systematic way of advancing health treatments, technologies, medicines and clinical care.

“The AHSN will provide an important mechanism for achieving a step-change in the way the NHS translates research and innovation into both best practice and cost-effective treatments and services for patients. We will also be promoting greater participation of patients in health research.

“Creation of this AHSN has been achieved by unprecedented high levels of co-operation between health organisations across the region and the universities in Exeter and Plymouth.

“We will also want to foster closer links with industry to be more effective at generating positive local economic benefits from research and innovation in health.”

The core members of the South West Peninsula Academic Health Science Network are:

  • South Western Ambulance NHS Foundation Trust
  • Plymouth University
  • University of Exeter

Cornwall:

  • Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group (Cornwall & isles of Scilly)
  • Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust

Devon:

  • Devon Partnership NHS Trust
  • Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group
  • South Devon & Torbay Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust
  • Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust
  • Southern Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  • Torbay & Southern Devon Health and Care NHS Trust

Somerset:

  • Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Somerset Partnership Trust
  • Taunton & Somerset NHS Foundation Trust
  • Yeovil District Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

The South West Peninsula AHSN Board Members are:

  • Chairman - Dr Andrew Vallance-Owen
  • Managing Director – Dr Renny Leach
  • Vice Chairman – Angela Pedder OBE, Chief Executive of the Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust
  • Prof Janice Kay, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Education), University of Exeter
  • Prof Raymond Playford, Deputy Vice Chancellor, Plymouth University 
  • Dr Tim Burke, Chairman of Northern, Eastern & Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Jo Cubbon, Chief Executive of Taunton & Somerset NHS Foundation Trust
  • Ann James, Chief Executive of Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Jac Kelly, Chief Executive of Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust
  • Dr Jo Roberts, South Devon & Torbay Clinical Commissioning Group clinical lead for innovation, engagement and communication
  • Lezli Boswell, Chief Executive Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Phil Confue, Chief Executive of Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Development of AHSNs was recommended in the report ‘Innovation, Health and Wealth’ by NHS England Chief Executive Sir David Nicholson in December 2011. Sir David Nicholson said: “The NHS is full of brilliant people with brilliant ideas. To spread ideas right across the NHS means working collaboratively with all those who have an interest.”

Earl Howe, Health Minister, said: “Britain is one of the best research centres in the world and it is important that we harness the skills and creativity in this sector to really improve the lives of those who use the NHS. The new AHSNs will help us develop better technology and make better use of the skills of NHS staff. They will also help us get in a better position to tackle the changing needs of our population and ensure patients get the care they deserve.”

The AHSNs are licensed and funded by NHS England. The South West Peninsula AHSN will be officially launched on 3 July 2013. More information about the AHSN can be viewed at: www.swpahsn.co.uk

Date: 25 May 2013

Read more University News