World-first academies launch in Wales to drive global healthcare revolutions

Wales has become the first country in the world to launch specialised Intensive Learning Academies (ILAs) that will deliver transformational training and support across preventative health, Value-Based Health and Care, and innovations in health and social care.

Welsh universities have created a range of flexible courses that include degree-level opportunities within these growing fields. They are open for professionals from the health and social care, and life sciences sectors across the globe to learn together.

Led by Swansea University and Bangor University, the ILAs are also delivering research and tailor-made consultancy services. This will support individual organisations to identify, develop and collaborate on innovative practices that will help to meet the challenges facing health and social care.

Applications are now open for the bespoke programmes, with more information available on the Life Sciences Hub Wales website. The courses, some of which can be accessed remotely, will train and prepare the next generation of global leaders in building future health and social care systems.

The academies will cater to the international demand from professional learners in the UK, Europe and further afield. This will help to further advance Wales’ position as a world leader in health and social care innovation and leadership in practice.

The three ILAs will commence activities across 2021, with each specialising in a subject identified as a key future growth area for the global health and social care markets:

  • The ‘Value-Based Health and Care Academy’ developed at Swansea University offers educational courses, research opportunities, and consultancy services for Value-Based Health and Care.
  • With a focus on prevention, Bangor University’s ‘ALPHAcademy will provide opportunities to support and develop leaders who are able to think with a cross sector and service perspective, and deliver change with firm knowledge and wide networks.
  • The ‘All-Wales Academy for Innovation in Health & Social Care’ a collaboration between Swansea University, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, Cardiff University, and the Bevan Commission – is focussing on innovation and transformation within health and social care.

The goal is to empower workforces around the globe with the expertise, skills, and confidence to drive the redesign of health and care systems for the better, improving patient outcomes and experiences, while boosting the efficiency and sustainability of services.

All courses will welcome applicants working across global health, social care, and life sciences systems. There are ILA scholarships available for those working within the health, social care and third sector within Wales and internationally, and for those who wish to retrain to join the sector.

Each academy is offering a range of full-time and flexible part-time tuition programmes. Qualifications will include Executive Education level CPD, Postgraduate Certificates, Diplomas, and Masters. Selected academies are also providing candidates with Doctorate-level opportunities.

Training learners from industry, health, and social care together will encourage cross-sector innovation and collaboration. This will allow the co-development of valuable skills and partnerships to support transformative health and social care.

Professor Hamish Laing, Director of the Value-Based Health and Care Academy, said: “The Value-Based Health and Care Academy is part of a developing international network, providing high quality education, collaborative research and consultancy to support the understanding and implementation of Value-Based Health and Care in the UK and countries across the globe.”


Professor Nichola Callow, Pro-VC Learning and Teaching at Bangor University, said: “Securing our nation’s health requires a significant and sustained effort to prevent illness and support good physical and mental health. Prevention is about helping people stay healthy, happy, and independent for as long as possible. We know that prevention works and can provide significant social benefits, which in turn can boost the health of our economy in a virtuous cycle.


Greater investment in prevention and in developing the skills and expertise needed to drive change will therefore have profound benefits across Wales. These innovative academies will offer exciting opportunities for leaders and aspiring leaders from across sectors to learn by doing, and to establish new ways of evidence-based working and collaboration.”

Len Richards, Chief Executive, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, said: Through a broad range of courses and resources, in collaboration with international partners, the ILA will support current and future generations of leaders, equipping them with the knowledge and skills required to innovate through the challenges we face post-Covid and beyond for health and social care to the benefit of citizens across Wales.

Cari-Anne Quinn, CEO at Life Sciences Hub Wales, said: “Life Sciences Hub Wales is delighted to be supporting with the promotion of the ILAs. These dedicated academies are a world first and we are immensely proud that Wales is pioneering the way forward in such important fields. Value-Based Health and Care, and preventative health are set to be major growth areas within health and social care, so it’s imperative that our future leaders develop these crucial skills and knowledge.


“Ongoing innovation is essential to ensuring a pipeline of ground-breaking discoveries and developments. By uniting health and industry professionals and encouraging them to learn and work together, these academies will establish a foundation for sustainable and collaborative innovation for years to come.”


More information on the new Academies can be found at: