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Catalyst Projects An initiative to improve patient care through data-driven health and care decisions

This programme is closed for applications.

  • We collaborated with Health Data Research UK (HDR UK) to support the development of health analytics and data science improvements that can be implemented across the health and care system to benefit patients, the workforce and the public.
  • We launched this collaboration with three new projects that will help improve patient care through data-driven health and care decisions.
  • Our three Catalyst projects started work in May 2020 for a duration of 12 months.


The Health Foundation and Health Data Research UK (HDR UK) jointly supported a new initiative that demonstrated how patient care can be improved through data-driven health and care decisions.

The UK has vast and rich data about people’s health and care, however this is often not available quickly for clinicians or patients to access to support their decision making. This causes delays and, in some cases, prevents the data from being analysed to deliver better care and improve people’s health. The Catalyst Projects helped to address some of these issues.

Catalyst Projects

As part of our collaboration with HDR UK, we announced three successful projects as part of the Better Care Catalyst programme:

AI-driven clinical decision-making tool to manage cystic fibrosis

This project, led by Royal Papworth NHS Foundation Trust, used AI machine learning to understand why pulmonary exacerbations happen in people with cystic fibrosis. They  developed a tool to assist clinicians in deciding when to treat the patient, and therefore reduce routine outpatient visits.

Reducing the health burden of diabetes with AI-powered clinical decision tools

This project tackled the health burden of diabetes by developing AI prediction tools to help clinicians and patients make better-informed decisions around management and treatment of the disease. This project was led by North West London Health and Care Partnership.

Uniting large scale patient data to develop an ‘Informatics Consult’ for doctors

This project, led by University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, supported doctors to make treatment decisions by developing an Informatics Consult, where they  ordered the analysis of large-scale data relevant to the individual patient and treatment decision.

The projects have now completed. To find out more about what they achieved, please visit the HDR UK website .

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