The AHSN Network

Spreading innovation, improving health, stimulating economic growth

The AHSN Network

Health Innovation Manchester is one of England’s 15 AHSNs. The AHSNs were set up by NHS England in 2013 and were relicensed from April 2018 to operate as the key innovation arm of the NHS.

We are unique. Our strength lies in our ability to operate locally because of the trust our member organisations have in us. We understand the needs of our health systems and are well placed to broker innovative solutions, while collaborating across England to take what works best and quickly spread it nationally.

We are catalysts for innovation, helping facilitate change across whole health and social care economies – to improve health, drive down the cost of care, and stimulate economic growth.

We connect regional networks of NHS and academic organisations, local authorities, the third sector, industry and citizens – responding to the diverse needs of our patients and populations through partnership and collaboration.

We create the right environment for relevant industries and innovators to work more effectively with the health and social care ecosystem.

We are collaborators – we identify successful innovations in our local and regional communities and support the spread of these across our national Network at pace and scale.

AHSNs work locally and benefit from being part of a national network.

Each AHSN is embedded in its regional health and care community, understanding the system and patient needs on the ground. We develop projects, programmes and initiatives that reflect the diversity of our local populations and healthcare challenges.

Each AHSN is also part of the national AHSN Network, linked into a unique collaborative of expertise and experience, sharing learning, pooling intelligence, and benefitting from a pipeline of emerging and proven solutions from around the country.

National programmes and priorities selected national adoption and spread across the AHSN Network from April 2020

Early Intervention Eating Disorders

Improving Diagnosis of ADHD

Lipid management and Familial Hypercholesterolaemia (FH)

Ongoing national programmes


The Innovation Exchange

Accelerated Access Collaborative

Patient Safety

Patient Safety Collaboratives

Previous national programmes and priorities (2018-2020)

Ingrid Brindle -hands using AF Device

Atrial Fibrillation (AF)


Emergency Laparotomy Collaborative (ELC)

Escape Pain



Preventing prescribing errors



Mental Health

Serenity Integrated Mentoring (SIM)


Transfers of Care Around Medicine (TCAM)

Health Innovation Manchester stakeholder research survey findings 2019/2020

A report about Health Innovation Manchester has been released following a survey of stakeholders. The research was commissioned by NHS England and NHS Improvement, and the Office for Life Sciences (OLS) to explore and evaluate the views of stakeholders of all Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs), including Health Innovation Manchester. Topics covered included familiarity with and perceptions of AHSNs, evaluations of AHSNs’ communications, services, support, work programmes and cross-regional working, and perceived opportunities and challenges for AHSNs in the future.

NHS research and innovation needs survey 2019

The AHSN Network, NHS England and the NIHR commissioned ComRes to conduct a survey that would provide a detailed understanding of the innovation and research needs at local level across all AHSNs. The findings of this project were used to produce an initial statement of innovation and research needs in each AHSN area.

These statements, alongside the regional and national report findings, will be used to facilitate further discussions at regional level, involving patients and the public and the research community, to develop and refine the priorities highlighted. Each AHSN region will publish a statement of local innovation and research needs. The initial statement for Health Innovation Manchester (April 2019) is below along with the national report and more information about the survey.

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