InnoScot Health is a formal partner of NHS Scotland of 20 years’ standing, and a proud supporter and developer of workforce-led healthcare innovations.

Our Innovation team is the first welcoming point of contact for those great ideas and is constantly evaluating new submissions from health and social care staff across the country. Indeed, InnoScot Health has evaluated more than 2,200 since the organisation first started in 2002.

The team is an open door for anyone, from first-time to experienced innovators who want to talk to an expert or submit an idea.  

Committed to supporting the health service adapt and respond to challenges and pressures, the Innovation team offers a wealth of expertise and advice on how to kickstart an idea, before developing it through InnoScot Health’s innovation pathway.

Working with staff across a range of roles and medical specialties, the Innovation team has helped to bring a range of medical devices, products, and technologies to market.

Its members are also geographically spread around Scotland to ensure that they are embedded in local health boards and easily reached both in person and online.

The team brings together the right skills, expertise, and ambition to optimise innovation, in turn reacting quickly to an evolving healthcare environment and supporting faster adoption of transformational innovations.

The big goal? To inspire, accelerate, and commercialise impactful innovation for health, economic, and social improvement.

InnoScot Health’s Head of Innovation Robert Rea has been with the organisation for nine years and has helped to determine its path for just as long thanks to his tremendous experience. Holding a PhD in Biology and BSc (Hons) degree in Developmental Biology, before completing post-doctoral research fellowships in dendritic cell immunology, Robert worked at the University of Queensland, Australia, developing novel stem cell-based therapies for kidney disease.

Amongst other roles, he was Intellectual Property Manager for French biotech company Cellectis, then Business Development Executive at the University of St Andrews, before joining InnoScot Health in 2014.

Perthshire-based Robert is able to count on the tremendous insight and knowledge of three Innovation Managers – Fiona Schäefer, Leigh Mair, and Frances Ramsay, helping to provide support across all Scottish regions.

Fiona has been championing the benefits of innovation and collaboration for two decades. She has worked across industry, academia and the public sector and has a keen awareness in helping organisations to identify, protect, develop, and harness value from their ideas, knowledge and inventions.

Most recently, Lothian-based Fiona supported academics and clinical researchers at the University of Edinburgh’s College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, in turn working closely with the NHS.

Before joining the Innovation team last year, Leigh took up a role at the Scottish Rural Health Partnership, working at the interface of academia, industry and the NHS.

Leigh has also been involved with several successful medical product launches, ensuring that patients in Scotland are able to access new technologies and drug treatments. She is active in North Scotland and the Scottish Islands after developing strong local contacts and joining the Management Board for UHI Moray in Elgin.

A more recent InnoScot Health addition, with a background in acute care, Frances has worked with both NHS Scotland and England.

She worked within the medical device industry as a clinical nurse specialist working in an educational capacity, both advising on, and helping, research projects. Her interest in developing products and working closely with key clinical leaders has since helped to commercialise a range of products.

Now part of the InnoScot Health team, west of Scotland-based Frances is promoting the benefits of innovation and a more collaborative approach across NHS Scotland.

The team offers vast experience in translating innovative ideas into viable products and services. If you have a great idea to improve patient care, get in touch via