Towards the end of 2015 I applied to The Health Foundation's innovation programme, which supports innovation at the frontline across all sectors of health and care services This is highly competitive and involved 3 round national application and interview process . For me it was an opportunity to bring together a number of concepts and initiatives that I am passionate about and have been working on and talking about for the last few years. Specifically we will be targeting patients with a diagnosis of high blood pressure (hypertension) and offering a modern dietary approach in parallel with other treatments.
I'm very pleased to announce that with the support of the Royal United Hospital Bath NHS Foundation Trust, Bath and North East Somerset clinical commissioning group and public health, we have been successful and this is a very exciting prospect.
We now have 15 months and £75,000 funding to prove the model. Sarah Henderson, Associate Director from the Health Foundation said, “We are very excited to be working with such a high-calibre team and I’m pleased that we will be able to support the development and testing of their idea over the next year".
In my own practice I have been seeing some dramatic success stories in patients who have troublesome high blood pressure, multi-tablet burden and associated conditions such as atrial fibrillation. In some cases and with appropriate dietary help and guidance we can see a near reversal of many of these features. Lives can be transformed and escalating medical strategies avoided through a focus on what we eat. But its now time to formalise, scale and disseminate these same techniques. Crucially we need to demonstrate supportive data and this project puts us in the perfect position.
In the first instance I have decided to target blood pressure but the initiative can expand to the full spectrum of metabolic risk factors associated with diet and weight. The project brings together elements and insights from the fast moving consumer goods industry, modern and mainstream media and intermixes these with healthcare. The key is to provide patients with realistic everyday solutions as well as information. To read more see the hospital press release here and we will be revealing more in the coming weeks.