NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Programme (CEP)

The Clinical Entrepreneurship Programme (CEP) is a one-year mentoring and professional development programme that supports entrepreneurial and innovative thinking among healthcare professionals. Invest NI has committed funding to support healthcare professionals working in Northern Ireland to participate in the Programme for 3 years, up to 31 March 2026.

CEP has supported over 500 clinical entrepreneurs, leading to the creation of 246 start-up businesses and over 1300 jobs over the past six years and we are working in partnership with Health Innovation Research Alliance NI (HIRANI), HSC and NHS offer this exciting opportunity to our local healthcare professionals.

The call for applications will open in October 2024.  To get prepared, register for Hirani’s CEP prep learning sessions.  These aim to help develop skills and act as a useful basis for those interested in applying to the main programme.  They are CPD accredited and you will receive a certificate of completion if you attend all four sessions.

Aims and benefits of the NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Programme:

  • Support the healthcare workforce to develop and scale their most innovative ideas for the benefit of patients, staff, and the wider NHS. 
  • Develop the skills, knowledge and experience needed to successfully develop and spread innovative solutions to the challenges facing the NHS.
  • Develop leadership capability to deliver on the promise of digital health, genomics, data analytics, advanced technology and social networks for the patients. 
  • Allow entrepreneurs to pursue their innovation without having to leave the health service.
  • Provide a wider benefit to economic growth through inward investment in the health, social care and life science sectors.
  • Support invention, commercialisation and adoption of new products, services, and care pathways by enabling commercial, social, public and charitable sector entrepreneurship.

Transforming healthcare through innovation

The Programme is delivered by Anglia Ruskin University, and part of the NHS Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) which brings together industry, government, regulators, patients and the NHS to remove barriers and accelerate the introduction of new ground-breaking treatments and diagnostics which have the potential to transform care.

The curriculum covers all aspects of setting up and running a small business or being an entrepreneur, including attracting investors, applying for funding, communications, and legal and regulatory considerations. 

Participants will receive guidance on how to build and run a start-up business in this highly charged environment through a series of educational events with industry mentors.

The NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Programme:

  • Is a workforce development programme for both clinical and non-clinical NHS or HSC staff (including but not limited to Doctors, Dentists, Healthcare Scientists, Nurses and Midwives, Allied Health Professionals and Pharmacists, Social Workers, Managers, and Administrative/ Clerical Staff) who are selected by a competitive recruitment process. 
  • Is run by NHS England and NHS Improvement and has been developed with entrepreneurial clinicians, academic leaders, and industry partners.
  • Covers all aspects of setting up and running a business, including attracting investors, applying for funding, and ensuring appropriate corporate governance. 
  • Offers mentoring, networking, education, customer matching, resources, development tools, and more.
  • Has raised over £225 million in private and public sector funding, and created over 1,000 jobs, and benefited 16 million users.

Supported by:

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Business support team
0800 181 4422
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