University and health trust unite to boost medical innovation and patient care

The University of Plymouth and the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust have formed a closer strategic partnership with the aim of improving patient care through research, innovation and knowledge exchange.
The new partnership will focus on priority areas including clinical and medical research and development, innovation in eHealth and eHealthcare, commercial innovation and business development.
Environmental concerns will also be taken into account by exploring opportunities for sustainability practices that are in line with both the Green NHS and University ambitions.
The agreement has been captured in a Memorandum of Understanding signed by the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Judith Petts CBE, and Steve Williamson, Chief Executive of the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust.
In order to achieve their aims, the two organisations will undertake measures such as supporting clinical academic collaborations and developing joint strategies for health-related research, health design and education.
Workshops will be set up for developing ideas in targeted areas of mutual interest, and the partners will look at ways of working effectively with others in the region to improve patient healthcare and health outcomes.
Regular meetings will also be held between lead personnel from both the University and the Trust to encourage progress and support the organisations' ongoing relationship.
Professor Petts said:
“The health service is facing significant and ever-increasing challenges. As the largest provider of healthcare education in the South West, we already appreciate the power of collaboration with the region’s healthcare providers. We have been working with Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust for many years to provide essential healthcare training. This partnership cements our collaboration and importantly will enhance clinical research and innovation for patient care and wellbeing.”
Steve Williamson added:
“There is a strong history of partnership working between the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust and the University of Plymouth. The Memorandum of Understanding is seeking to reinforce and formalise that relationship. It also sets out an ambition for the future for our two organisations to rapidly progress on how we can strengthen and build on that partnership working. The University of Plymouth are critical to our current and future workforce so it is a hugely important relationship for us.” 
<p>Professor Judith Petts CBE and Steve Williamson sign the Memorandum of Understanding<br></p>

Professor Judith Petts CBE and Steve Williamson sign the Memorandum of Understanding

The formalised partnership builds on many years of cooperation between the University and the NHS Trust, with University students and graduates having worked for many years at the Trust’s sites.
The organisations have collaborated to create the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust Clinical School and the Knowledge Spa, which is home to the University’s Truro School of Nursing and Dental Education Facility in Cornwall.
They have also worked together on a range of innovative research initiatives, including the development of an award-winning app allowing people with epilepsy to monitor their own condition, and studies examining the potential for medical treatments to lead to antimicrobial resistance.

<p>Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust</p>

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