Grants secured for speech and language platform.

Congratulations to Clinical Entrepreneurs Caroline McCallum and Michael Watts at Blum Health for securing two grants for the development of a Speech and Language Therapy platform.

The grants, one from, the NIHR i4i Challenge ‘ Children and Young People’s Mental Health’ (CYPMH) and the second from; Department of Business Energy and Industry Strategy (BEIS) Knowledge Assets Grant Fund will fund a collaborative partnership between Homerton Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and Blum Health.

Approximately 1.4 million children and young people (CYP) in the UK have Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN). These children are at risk of poor life outcomes such as lower exam attainment, employability and mental health issues. There is a disparity in therapy services available across the country, particularly in schools. Homerton and Blum Health are developing an online speech and language platform to offer children in schools access to essential services.

Caroline McCallum said “We want to offer a personalised and interactive NHS SaLT platform for CYP, education staff and families to access a hybrid offer of direct therapy, training, resources and support. In doing so we can address the imminent supply vs. demand imbalance, break down inequality barriers and enable CYP nationwide to receive virtual SaLT support for a better future.”

Michael Watts said: “This collaboration is not only an exciting project, but also pays homage to the power of the Clinical Entrepreneur programme and it’s ability to connect like-minded individuals and synergise skill sets. The ability for an SME and an NHS Trust to join forces to achieve a common goal still remains difficult despite the improvements that have occurred through the Covid-19 pandemic but by working together as fellow CE’s we continue to break down these barriers and drive more efficient and sustainable patient care initiatives.”

We are currently launching a social media campaign, to find out more about the local virtual therapy service. Please visit the Get Hackney Talking website:

If there are any entrepreneurs who work/have connections in education, we would love to hear from you. You can also get in contact with Caroline directly via email: or on LinkedIn

Or contact Dr Michael Watts at or visit Blum Health

Published by Lucy Dentice

Deputy Programme Manager for the NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Programme.