NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Programme

We're proud to be working with NHS England to deliver the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme, which supports NHS staff to develop and scale-up their most innovative ideas.

Group of clinicians pictured with Matt Hancock MP, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

Founded in 2016 by Professor Tony Young OBE, a practising NHS surgeon and Director of Medical Innovation at ARU, the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme has become the world's largest workforce development programme for healthcare professionals. It is open to all clinical professionals in the NHS.

What the Programme does

Clinicians work on the frontline, where the priority is healthcare delivery and patient care. But this can mean there's limited opportunity to engage in medical innovation, to step back and consider how the latest technology can play a part in prevention, as well as treatment and cure.

The Clinical Entrepreneur Programme gives clinicians that opportunity.

"This programme is a game changer. It will drive improvements and inspire staff to innovate for the benefit of patients and the health service."

The story so far

In just three years, the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme has helped more than 360 NHS clinicians gain the skills, knowledge and experience to transform the way health and care is delivered.

With expert support and mentoring, clinicians have:

  • created 175 start-up companies
  • developed 347 innovations
  • secured £164m of investment
  • created more than 1,000 jobs.

The Programme does this by providing commercial knowledge, expertise, and permission to innovate.



Benefits for staff

For many NHS professionals, the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme is an opportunity to develop a different set of skills to those covered by traditional training programmes.

"A fantastic programme that embraces innovation and helps enormously with entrepreneur support."

It offers peer to peer support, system introductions, business planning sessions, access to networking, placements and internships, and specialist clinics on subjects such as Intellectual Property.

Clinical entrepreneurs are also given a mentor, who will be a leader from the commercial, financial, clinical, academic, managerial, charitable or public sector.

It's helping to transform our approach to healthcare, as we move towards a prevention-based health and care system for the future.

And, as well as tapping into the expertise of staff, the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme has helped to retain it – with more than 100 clinicians returning to or staying with the NHS over the past three years.



Play your part

There are currently 500 professionals involved in the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme. Visit the NHS England website to find out how you can join them.


Find out more

If you're interested in learning more about the Clinical Entrepreneur Programme, please contact Polly Sullivan, Project Manager in Medical Innovation at ARU.




Pictured on this page: Clinical Entrepreneurs meeting the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care at Anglia Ruskin University’s School of Medicine. From left to right: Dr Hinnah Rafique; Dr Chris Whittle; Vicky Ford MP; Dr Harry Thirkettle; Matt Hancock MP, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care; Dr Krishan Ramdoo; Professor Tony Young, National Clinical Lead for Innovation, NHS England and NHS Improvement; Hadley Beeman, Chief Technology Advisor to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.