NHS International Engagement beyond COVID-19

Globe showing Europe

Now may not seem like the obvious time to be discussing NHS involvement in non-essential programmes of work, such as those taking place internationally. However, as we live with COVID-19, engaging with other health systems will continue to be vitally important to the NHS.

Responding to our members’ requests to help them think through the place of international activity during and beyond the current pandemic, we have established a member-only space where international activity can be discussed openly with an appreciation for continued interest in seizing the benefits of international engagement, alongside the very real restrictions placed upon many of us at this time.

First webinar, Thursday 29th October, 10:00am – 1:00pm: How NHS leaders can optimise organisational benefits from their staff’s international engagement. Register your place.

NHS staff have a long history of participating in philanthropic work overseas to support the development of health professionals and health systems in low and middle-income countries. But how NHS organisations can systematically understand and access mutual benefits from this activity is often less-well understood.   

In this webinar, we discuss how senior leaders in the NHS can access national support and develop a strategic approach to their organisation’s engagement in international development to optimise benefits for their staff and organisations. 

The webinar will:

  • Discuss the benefits of international development for the NHS, and the associated challenges
  • Consider how NHS leaders can best support staff engagement in this work
  • Explore the support and opportunities available at the national level, from Arm’s Length Bodies, Government departments, and NGOs 


Programme: 29 October - How NHS leaders can optimise organisational benefits from their staff’s international engagement

10:05-11:00: The Importance of NHS Involvement - Three board-level executives and two health professionals will discuss the ways in which NHS global engagement is a worthwhile investment, framed through their organisations’ experiences, including entering the space, benefits, challenges, and next steps.

11:05-11:45: Funding Opportunities - The Tropical Health Education Trust (THET) and two of their NHS partners will discuss their experiences of accessing funding for their staff’s international work via Department for International Development (now Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) programmes, and possible future opportunities for funding.  

12:00 -12:40: Frugal Innovations – Dr Matt Harris, Dr Ted Adams and Dr Yasser Bhatti will discuss how NHS participation in international development activity can lead to the uptake of innovations in the NHS that were developed in low and middle-income countries. These are commonly known as ‘frugal innovations’ due to the cost savings they offer to the NHS. They will be joined by Neville Young from Yorkshire and Humber AHSN, who will share the role the AHSNs play in supporting uptake of these innovations into the NHS. 

Future webinars in the series

November Practical implications of EU Exit for NHS leaders and organisations
TBC International Commercial Engagement for the NHS in the context of COVID-19

If there is an international-related topic you would like us to address at a future sessions, please let us know.

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