Frequently asked questions

1. What can my NHS organisation use the money and development support for? 

We would expect the money and any accompanying support to be used to further develop your proven innovation and drive its spread and adoption across the wider NHS – with support and monitoring provided by the prize partner.

2. We work for NHS organisations, can we apply?

Only NHS organisations in England can apply (i.e. be the lead applicants) as the money is from NHS England and our supporting organisations to drive innovation amongst those who deliver healthcare on a daily basis. You should liaise with your partnering NHS organisation to see if they will lead the application, noting the money will be given to them only.

3. What about Intellectual Property (IP) – will NHS England own it if I win a prize?

No, you own the IP. Our prizes can be considered as a grant to your organisation.

4. Does the prize money have to be spent in the year in which it is awarded?

The prize money has been made available from NHS England’s 2015/16 budget. As with previous years, winning organisations will need to make their own provisions locally if they wish to carry monies forward into the new financial year.

5. I am the innovator at the NHS organisation and a senior person, can I be the sponsor on the application form?

No, you will have to ask another senior colleague to sponsor your application. We do this to ensure there is organisational buy-in at your end to your innovation and that senior management are aware of it.

6. Will NHS England be assessing the winners in any way post awarding?

Each challenge prize has a partner  associated with it who will work to support the winner to develop and spread their innovation. NHS England will engage with these partners to ensure the prize money is being invested appropriately in the innovation. While we will not be conducting formal assessments, we will contact winners over the period of 2015/16 to evaluate   progress and if other support can be provided.

7. We are a GP practice – can I apply?

While we would encourage for non NHS GP practices to partner with a local NHS England commissioned organisation (e.g. NHS GP practice, area team, CCG), we will consider applications from GP practices.

8. Can we apply for more than one prize?

You are allowed to apply for more than one prize. We would discourage however applying for cancer and the Acorn challenge prize for one innovation. This is because if you are applying for the Acorn challenge then by default your innovation is not developed enough to meet the criteria for the big challenge prize.

9. How do we do multiple applications?

Once you complete an application, you can log in to your home page.  There is a create a new submission button at the bottom.

10. We have won other funding from NHS England – can we still apply?