Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Surgery & Cancer

Honorary Lecturer



yasser.bhatti Website




Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Wing (QEQM)St Mary's Campus





Publication Type

11 results found

Prime M, Attaelmanan I, Imbuldeniya A, Harris M, Darzi A, Bhatti Yet al., 2018, From Malawi to Middlesex: The case of the Arbutus Drill Cover System as an example of the cost-saving potential of frugal innovations for the UK NHS, BMJ Innovations, Vol: 4, Pages: 103-110, ISSN: 2055-8074

© 2018 Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article). All rights reserved. Background Musculoskeletal disease is one of the leading clinical and economic burdens of the UK health system, and the resultant demand for orthopaedic care is only set to increase. One commonly used and one of the most expensive hardware in orthopaedic surgery is the surgical drill and saw. Given financial constraints, the National Health Service (NHS) needs an economic way to address this recurring cost. We share evidence of one frugal innovation with potential for contributing to the NHS' efficiency saving target of £22 billion by 2020. Methods Exploratory case study methodology was used to develop insights and understanding of the innovations potential for application in the NHS. Following a global search for potential frugal innovations in surgery, the Arbutus Drill Cover System was identified as an innovation with potential to deliver significant cost savings for the NHS in the UK. Results The Arbutus Drill Cover System is up to 94% cheaper than a standard surgical drill available in the UK. Clinical and laboratory tests show that performance, safety and usability are as good as current offerings in high-income countries and significantly better than hand drills typically used in low-and-middle-income countries. The innovation meets all regulatory requirements to be a medical device in the Europe and North America. Conclusions The innovation holds promise in reducing upfront and life span costs for core equipment used in orthopaedic surgery without loss of effectiveness or safety benchmarks. However, the innovation needs to navigate complicated and decentralised procurement processes and clinicians and healthcare leaders need to overcome cognitive bias.


Harris M, Marti J, Watt H, Bhatti Y, Macinko J, Darzi AWet al., 2017, Explicit Bias Toward High-Income-Country Research: A Randomized, Blinded, Crossover Experiment Of English Clinicians, HEALTH AFFAIRS, Vol: 36, Pages: 1997-2004, ISSN: 0278-2715


Bhatti Y, Taylor A, Harris M, Wadge H, Escobar E, Prime M, Patel H, Carter AW, Parston G, Darzi AW, Udayakumar Ket al., 2017, Global Lessons In Frugal Innovation To Improve Health Care Delivery In The United States, HEALTH AFFAIRS, Vol: 36, Pages: 1912-1919, ISSN: 0278-2715


Kulasabanathan K, Issa H, Bhatti Y, Prime M, Del Castillo J, Darzi A, Harris Met al., 2017, Do International Health Partnerships contribute to reverse innovation? a mixed methods study of THET-supported partnerships in the UK, GLOBALIZATION AND HEALTH, Vol: 13, ISSN: 1744-8603


Bhatti YA, Prime M, Harris M, Wadge H, McQueen J, Patel H, Carter AW, Parston G, Darzi Aet al., 2017, The search for the holy grail: Frugal innovation in healthcare from low-income or middle-income countries for reverse innovation to developed countries, BMJ Innovations, Vol: 3, Pages: 212-220, ISSN: 2055-8074

© 2017 BMJ Publishing Group. All Rights Reserved. The healthcare sector stands to benefit most from frugal innovation, the idea that more can be done for less for many more people, globally. As a first step for health systems to leverage new approaches to offset escalating health expenditures and to improve health outcomes, the most relevant frugal innovations have to be found. The Institute of Global Health Innovation was commissioned by the US-based Commonwealth Fund to identify frugal innovations from around the world that could, if transferred to the USA, offer approaches for expanding access to care and dramatically lower costs. Our global scan was motivated by the need to extend the list of frugal innovations in healthcare beyond the impressive but oft-repeated examples such as GE's MAC 400, a US$800 portable ECG machine, Narayana's US$1500 cardiac surgery and Aravind's US$30 cataract surgery. Our search involved (1) scanning innovation databases, (2) refining frameworks to identify frugal innovations and evaluate their reverse potential and (3) developing in-depth case studies. From 520 possible innovations, we shortlisted 16 frugal innovations that we considered as frugal and with potential for reverse diffusion into high-income country health systems. Our global search was narrowed down to three care delivery models for case analysis: The Brazilian Family Health Strategy around community health workers; Singapore-based GeriCare@North use of telemedicine and Brazil's Saude Crianca community involvement and citizenship programme. We share core features of the three frugal innovations and outline lessons for practitioners, scholars and policymakers seeking to lower healthcare costs while increasing access and quality.


Harris MJ, Bhatti Y, Prime M, del Castillo J, Parston G, Darzi Aet al., 2016, Global Diffusion of Healthcare Innovation: Making the Connections. Report for the World Innovation Summit for Health, World Innovation Summit for Health 2016, Publisher: World Innovation Summit for Health

04GDHIEXECUTIVE SUMMARYThis research is part of the ongoing study of GDHI. The diffusion or spread of innova-tions over time through a specific population or social system is important to unlock the potential benefits of an innovation. There has been much study of how to encour-age the uptake of innovations so that they become part of everyday practice and ben-efit many, rather than a few. In this research, we explore this from the demand side. We explore how FHWs and leaders find solutions to their everyday challenges, and which sources are the most influential. We consider how these groups are sourcing solutions to their problems in six countries and how healthcare organizations can source innovations more effectively to meet the needs of FHWs and leaders. The study also explores the role that ‘curator organizations’ – a specialized set of organ-izations that source innovations from around the world – are playing in helping to diffuse innovations into clinical practice. We consider what role these organizations could play in future to ensure that they are relevant to frontline needs. The study builds on previous findings from 2013 GDHI research that showed how cer-tain system characteristics, enablers and frontline behaviors are critical to diffusion.1It follows on from the 2015 GDHI study that assessed the importance and prevalence of these elements in eight case studies of rapid, successfully scaled innovations.2This year, our study focuses on how FHWs and organization leaders source innova-tion in the first place. Our research draws on quantitative surveys of more than 1,350 FHWs in major urban centers of six countries (England, the United States (US), Qatar, Brazil, India and Tanzania). We conducted more than 90 personal interviews with healthcare leaders in these locations and in-depth conversations with the managers of 10 curator organizations.


Harris MJ, Bhatti Y, Prime M, del Castillo J, Parston G, Darzi Aet al., 2016, Global Diffusion of Healthcare Innovation: Making the Connections, Global Diffusion of Healthcare Innovation: Making the Connections, Publisher: Qatar Foundation


Attaelmanan I, Bhatti YA, Harris M, Prime M, Darzi Aet al., The development and diffusion of surgical frugal innovations – lessons for the NHS, LSE International Health Policy Conference 2017


Prime M, Bhatti Y, Harris M, 2016, Frugal and Reverse Innovations in Surgery, Global Surgery: The Essentials, Editors: Park, Price


Prime M, Bhatti Y, Harris M, African healthcare innovation: an untapped resource?, World Hospitals and Health Services Journal


Harris M, Bhatti Y, Darzi A, 2016, Does the Country of Origin Matter in Health Care Innovation Diffusion?, JAMA-JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION, Vol: 315, Pages: 1103-1104, ISSN: 0098-7484


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