PAPWORTH Hospital-based Health Enterprise East (HEE), the NHS innovation hub for the East of England, is appealing to staff working in all branches of the NHS throughout the region to come forward with healthcare innovations. The 2007 Innovation Competiti

PAPWORTH Hospital-based Health Enterprise East (HEE), the NHS innovation hub for the East of England, is appealing to staff working in all branches of the NHS throughout the region to come forward with healthcare innovations.

The 2007 Innovation Competition has just been launched by HEE, with a deadline of March 30, inviting staff to enter their ideas for innovative products and services to improve treatment or service delivery.

The winners will be announced at an awards dinner to be held in June, presented by BBC Look East's Stewart White.

Prizes totalling £18,000 are on offer to the winners across the three categories of medical technology, software/ICT and service delivery.

Support will also be provided by HEE to develop the winning ideas into new products or services.

Dr Peter Blenkinsop, pictured, chief executive of HEE, said: "We were overwhelmed by the response to our two previous competitions from people working in a wide range of roles in the NHS, demonstrating huge creativity and enthusiasm".

Entry forms are available from the HEE website - www.hee.org.uk - and also from Steph Presland on steph.presland@papworth.nhs.uk or by telephoning 01480 364925.

* HEE has appointed David Arr, currently chairman of West Suffolk NHS Hospital Trust, as non-executive director. His other business interests include being a partner in SPS, a general consultancy for growing and developing businesses.

His early career was spent in banking and finance - Hambros Bank plc and Barclays Bank plc - and more recently PricewaterhouseCoopers.

He said: "HEE is fulfilling an increasingly important role at a time when resources are restricted in the NHS.