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February 3, 2023
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Patchwork Health founder: Good investors ‘offer so much more than capital’ – Fi5

Dr Anas Nader is the CEO and co-founder of Patchwork Health, a digital platform that lets NHS teams recruit, manage and dispatch both temporary and permanent healthcare workers.

Founded by Nader and Dr Jing Ouyang in 2016, Patchwork Health is aiming to tackle the workforce crisis affecting the NHS.

The London-headquartered startup has raised £27.7m in funding, with £20m of that coming in a Series B round last month.

Patchwork Health’s platform is now used on over 70 NHS sites by thousands of clinicians.

In this week’s Founder in Five Q&A, the Patchwork Health chief reveals the best and worst parts of his job, explains how good investors “offer so much more than capital”, and why flexibility is key to reducing burnout.

1. What are the best and worst parts of your job?

Anas Nader: Beyond a doubt, the best part of my job is getting to work closely with thousands of my fellow clinicians and our dedicated team at Patchwork to drive genuine innovation and transformation across the healthcare sector. While there are understandable challenges ahead for healthcare organisations – from growing staff shortages to record care backlogs – it’s inspiring to see the commitment from so many to fuel change and create a more sustainable future.

The worst part of my job? Balancing my desire to make a difference and help as many healthcare staff as quickly as possible, whilst appreciating the challenges that come with innovating in such a complex, vital industry. True, meaningful and lasting change takes time.

2. What funding advice would you give to a first-time founder?

AN: Find an investor that will support you in the long-term and is genuinely onboard with your mission. At Patchwork, we’re so grateful to have been backed by Praetura Ventures on three separate occasions, and more recently to have also been backed by Perwyn. Both have provided ongoing support and an understanding of the change that is needed within the NHS, and this has played a huge role in our continued growth.

Ask yourself which investors you can see as part of your business in the long-term and what value or expertise will they provide as you grow. Build a strong, long-term partnership with each of your investors – they can offer so much more than capital.

3. How do you prevent burnout?

AN: Flexibility is key to reducing burnout. While working in the NHS, my co-founder Dr Jing Ouyang and I witnessed first-hand how rigid rotas, inflexible leave policies and increasing staff shortages were contributing to rising levels of burnout among our fellow clinicians. It’s currently leading as many as one in five to consider leaving their roles altogether.

Wellbeing is tightly connected to workforce planning, and the more flexible we make this, the lower the risk of staff burnout becomes.

4. What’s a fact about yourself that people might find surprising?

AN: I’m originally from Canada. My dream of becoming a doctor began at a young age and I started my university studies in Toronto. But before committing to a career in medicine I had a short stint as an artist and medical illustrator, where I worked with medical journals and healthcare institutions to create medical illustrations such as anatomical images or microscopic diagrams. It wasn’t until later that I decided to cross the pond to the UK and joined Imperial College to train as a doctor.

Since moving, I’ve been lucky enough to meet my amazing wife and we now have a 16-month-old daughter, who is our pride and joy.

5. What’s the most misunderstood technology?

AN: The technology that healthcare teams have at their disposal to manage their workforces is frequently misunderstood. Many healthcare organisations such as the NHS still have to rely on Excel spreadsheets to organise shifts for their permanent staff.

This may be functional, but it can’t provide them with the flexibility and dynamism that’s needed to manage a modern workforce.

Founder in Five – a UKTN Q&A series with the entrepreneurs behind the UK’s innovative startups, scaleups, unicorns and public tech companies – is published every Friday. 

The post Patchwork Health founder: Good investors ‘offer so much more than capital’ – Fi5 appeared first on UKTN | UK Tech News.

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