Pioneering solution to combat issue of dehydration in hospital patients joins NHS Innovation Accelerator in 2020
Helping tackle the problem of dehydration amongst hospital patients with mobility needs or those recovering from illness or injury, the WaterDrop has been announced as one of 11 innovations to join the NHS Innovation Accelerator (NIA) in 2020.
The WaterDrop provides a simple, easy to use, easy to measure way of enabling vulnerable people to stay hydrated without the need of assistance. As well as being a low-cost, high impact solution, it also helps to prevent avoidable intravenous drip use, which reduces infection risks and plastic waste.
WaterDrop was created by Hydrate for Health, a company which develops solutions to tackle dehydration amongst people who struggle to access enough fluids in hospital.
The innovation works similarly to a traditional intravenous fluid bag but is used orally. The bag is filled with fluid and attached to a drip stand, bed or piece of furniture which is placed near the patient. This means the tube can be accessed by the individual who then bites on the non-return valve at the end of the tube to release the fluid from the bag with ease.
For people who cannot reach for water independently in hospital, they now have easy, constant access to water with the WaterDrop. It also removes the need for patients to rely on hospital staff to constantly give them water as fluid can last in the WaterDrop for 24 hours before needing to be changed.
To see the WaterDrop in action, watch the video below:
The WaterDrop is one of 11 high impact innovations which the NIA recently announced would be joining the national accelerator in 2020. At a launch event chaired by Professor Tony Young, National Clinical Lead for Innovation of NHS England and NHS Improvement, the 2020 cohort of Fellows presented their innovations to over 100 key stakeholders.
The innovations joining the award-winning NIA offer solutions supporting priority areas for England’s NHS outlined in the NHS Long Term Plan. Their recruitment follows an international call and rigorous selection process, including review by over 100 clinical, patient and commercial assessors; an informal review by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE); interviews; and due diligence.
This marks the fifth year of the NIA, which is an NHS England initiative delivered in partnership with England’s 15 Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs), hosted at UCLPartners. Since 2015, it has supported the uptake and spread of 62 evidence-based innovations across more than 2,210 NHS sites.
Independent evaluations report that NIA innovations save the health and social care system £38 million a year, conservatively.
Piers Ricketts, Chair of the AHSN Network, said: “The NHS Innovation Accelerator is one of the flagship programmes of the AHSN Network. NIA Fellows have made a huge contribution to our health and care system since we started the programme five years ago, and we are proud to have supported these remarkable individuals on their development journey.
“It is gratifying to see their high-impact innovations gaining traction and visibility through our accelerator programme, and we are delighted that several NIA innovations have now had national impact in the NHS. We look forward to working with the new NIA Fellows to help them scale and deploy their innovations across the country for the benefit of patients and the NHS.”
Alongside the WaterDrop, the other 10 innovations selected to join the NIA in 2020 are:
- Fibricheck: A medically certified app (CE Class IIA, FDA approved) capable of the early detection of heart rhythm disorders, such as atrial fibrillation, using a smartphone or smartwatch
- Health Navigator: AI-guided proactive health coaching to prevent avoidable urgent and emergency care
- Locum’s Nest: A locum app that connects doctors to locum work in hospitals, while cutting out the inefficient, ineffective and expensive agency middleman
- Management and Supervision Tool (MaST): A dashboard that uses predictive analytics to generate insights which support staff to deliver high quality, effective mental health care by identifying those people who are most likely to require crisis services
- MediShout: The world’s first platform to integrate all logistical departments in hospitals, giving clinicians an app to instantly report issues and using AI to predict future problems
- MyPreOp: A cloud-hosted programme enabling patients to enter, own and share their preoperative assessment information
- Patient Experience Platform (PEP): AI platform transforming healthcare and improving safety by empowering the digital voice of patients
- QbTest: A CE-marked, FDA approved medical device that simultaneously measures attention, impulsivity and motor activity to speed up ADHD diagnosis and treatment evaluation
- RIX Wiki: Software that enables people with learning disabilities to share personal health and care information for effective person-centred support in their communities
- Safe Steps: Reducing the number of preventable falls in the ageing population through digital, evidence-based interventions
Mark Moran MBE, who set up Hydrate for Health, has also been selected to join the NIA.
Following successful spinal surgery in 2006 and experiencing first-hand the difficulty of reaching, lifting or holding drinks in hospital, Mark has since been devoted to creating solutions to the difficulties many people in hospital and the community have in independently accessing fluids.
In 2016, Mark was made MBE for ‘services to innovation and enterprise’ as a result of his work in helping solve the issue of dehydration in healthcare.
For more information about the NHS Innovation Accelerator, visit www.nhsaccelerator.com