The diffusion of healthcare innovation: What we've learnt and what remains unknown

Hannah Patel and Dr. Matthew Harris explore the barriers and enablers to the successful diffusion of innovation, drawing on specific case studies as well as large-scale quantitative and qualitative research. In this webinar, they provide advice to policymakers and front line care providers on how to harness the benefits of innovation in healthcare.

Webinar recording


Ms Hannah Patel, MSc, is a Policy Fellow at Imperial College’s Institute for Global Health Innovation. Hannah has worked within the Centre for Health Policy on a number of different projects looking into the role of innovation within healthcare. Hannah has contributed to research looking into the translation of frugal innovation from around the world into the US healthcare system in a project with the Commonwealth Fund, a healthcare foundation based in New York. The project aimed to assess to suitability of innovations developed in low and middle income countries to provide scalable, cost-reducing healthcare solutions in the US.

She is also the Forum Delivery Manager for the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) where she is responsible for the development of policy reports focussed on key global health challenges by working with academic and consultancy partners from around the world. These are presented at the yearly summit. In addition to this, Hannah has led the curation and creation of the Innovation Showcases at WISH. The showcases are part of a gallery of the latest in healthcare innovation from around the world, which provides delegates attending WISH to see what is up and coming in the world of global health.

Hannah has carried out an ongoing piece of research on the Global Diffusion of Healthcare Innovation (GDHI) which investigates the factors which promote and the barriers which inhibit the diffusion of innovations into global health systems. Over the last few years, the research team has assessed the role of the GDHI framework in many countries around the world and directly linked the framework to succesful rapid innovation diffusion case studies. The findings from GDHI research have been presented at the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) in Qatar in both 2013 and 2015.

Dr. Matthew Harris, DPhil, MBBS, MSc FFPH, is a Clinical Senior Lecturer in Public Health, jointly appointed between the Department of Primary Care and Public Health, and the Institute of Global Health Innovation. His work spans global health, innovation diffusion, primary care and health services research and he has worked for several years as a Primary Care physician in Brazil, as a WHO Polio Consultant in Ethiopia and as an HIV Technical Consultant in Mozambique. He has also spent two years as a Global Health Advisor to the UK Department of Health.

In 2014 he was awarded a prestigious Harkness Fellowship from the US Commonwealth Fund where he was a Visiting Research Assistant Professor at New York University under the mentorship of Prof James Macinko (UCLA) and Dr Don Goldmann (Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Boston). His research focussed on cognitive biases in evidence interpretation in the context of Reverse Innovation.

Matthew has been an advisor to the Pan-American Health Organization on issues related to health policy in Brazil; an Expert Witness at the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health, an invited speaker at a number of international conferences and a guest lecturer at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

He has published over fifty articles in journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, British Medical Journal, International Journal of Integrated Care, Globalization and Health, BMJ Quality and Safety, Qualitative Health Research, Administration and Society, and Public Administration and Development.

Matthew qualified in Medicine from UCL (1998), obtained his MSc (Public Health in Developing Countries) with Distinction from the LSHTM (2004), and his DPhil (Public Health) from Oxford University in 2009. He obtained his Certificate of Completion of Specialist Training in Public Health Medicine in March 2014 and is an Educational Supervisor for Public Health Specialist Registrars undertaking academic placements at Imperial College. Matthew leads the Public Health module of the MSc Health Policy and supervises several PhD and MPH students.