Innovative Disruption is the theme of our annual conference. It recognises that significant disruptive change must occur in key processes in the health system. Disruption is essential to provide openings and opportunities for radical innovation, which is essential to improve health service delivery, enhance patient experiences and control cost escalation.
The disruptive impulse has come from external factors ranging from demographic shifts to the availability of new technologies. Internal factors include the slow roll-out of some strategies, the challenge of culture change and the difficulties of managing with limited resources.
Innovation and new approaches to healthcare delivery spring from product (service), process (delivery method, technique, equipment) and structure (internal and external infrastructure). Improved patient outcomes and patient safety is a core need of all stakeholders from policy makers to front-line staff.
Much of the innovation to date in the health services, outside of the clinical strategies, has been incremental and is based on the continuous improvement of existing processes. But that will only get us so far. To be truly innovative, we need to be prepared to discard past policies, protocols and practices to make way for the sort of changes which will make a quantum difference.