HLA:IDEAS Programme

HLA:ideas is an incubator programme that supports social enterprises in healthcare and, in a wider sense, fosters leadership in healthcare through entrepreneurship. We call these social enterprises ‘initiatives’. The HLA:ideas Framework is designed to give a succinct and manageable framework to the HLA’s incubator programme. We outline key characteristics of suitable initiatives and present leadership outcomes and programme topics for the social entrepreneurs within the incubator. We then outline the programme topics delivery timeline to ensure comprehensive clarity. 

Initiatives are defined as early stage start-ups, companies or innovative ideas which operate as social enterprises in healthcare and healthcare leadership that are not-for profit. 

Initiatives characteristics

  • Innovative solution for a clearly defined problem

  • The right individuals to take the initiative forward

    • Ambitious and goal-oriented

    • Impressive track record

    • Have already shown commitment to the solution

    • A readiness to commit further

By giving initiatives support and expertise to reach their next goals over a minimum period of at least 1 – 2 years, The HLA’s core aims can be extended to the initiatives: 

  • Nurturing Leadership

Working with healthcare students and young professionals to develop our healthcare leaders of the future through building innovative social enterprises

  • Fostering Frontline Innovation

Engaging, developing and guiding clinical entrepreneurs to deliver innovative solutions for a wider positive societal impact

  • Empowering and Valuing the Next Generation of Clinical Leaders

Supporting our clinical entrepreneurs in their social enterprise

Individual applicant outcomes at the end of the programme

  • Discuss critical aspects of leadership as a social innovator and entrepreneur.

  • Analyse and appraise the dynamics and competencies of leading change at any level in an organisation or society.

  • Evaluate critical strategies to identify societal problems which can potentially benefit from change/innovation, considering the role of culture and impact.

  • Develop in depth knowledge and understand models of change which can facilitate the planning and successful implementation of change, taking into account the diversity of the workforce, social and economic factors.

  • Evaluate the process of change, and appraise their own performance in leading change and make recommendations for developing higher leadership or managerial skills.

  • Deliver an organisation that demonstrates impact and change in society.

The programme topics aim to cover the values that the HLA supports:

  • The HLA values accessibility and equity and believes all healthcare professionals should have the means to learn about and engage in social enterprise; at any level at any time.

  • The HLA believes inclusivity is key to leadership. Leadership should not be the arena of a chosen few but of all those with innovative visions, ideas and solutions.

Programme topics

  1. Building an innovative solution

    1. Finding a niche

    2. Defining the problem

    3. Evaluating the market and competition

    4. Creating a development/business plan

    5. Choosing your business model

  2. Protecting your enterprise

    1. Incorporating your social enterprise or registering your charity

    2. Intellectual property

    3. Team agreements

    4. Investor agreements

    5. How to hand over your organisation to the next group of people who will lead it

  3. Funding your idea

    1. Analysing how much you need

    2. Participating in competitions

    3. Evaluating different types of investment

    4. How to spend the money

  4. Bringing a solution to the fruition

    1. Creating a brand

    2. Field testing

    3. Social media

    4. Website

Host Organization

The Healthcare Leadership Academy
The Healthcare Leadership Academy


  • Nurturing Leadership – working with healthcare students and young professionals to develop our healthcare leaders of the future
  • Fostering Frontline Innovation – engaging, developing and guiding clinicians to deliver innovative solutions
  • Empowering and Valuing the Next Generation of Clinical Leaders – supporting our clinicians to use their talent effectively


  • The Healthcare Leadership Academy values accessibility and equity and believes all healthcare professionals should have the means to learn about and engage in leadership activities; at any level and at any time.
  • The Healthcare Leadership Academy believes inclusivity is key to leadership. Leadership should not be the arena of a chosen few but of all those with innovative visions, ideas and solutions.


The Healthcare Leadership Academy formed in response to demand from young clinicians and medical students to learn about leadership.

Founded by Dr Johann Malawana (Managing Director), and a team of like-minded professionals (Our Faculty and Assistant Course Directors) the Healthcare Leadership Academy launched on 20th December 2016.

HLA houses an exciting faculty from across the health sector and beyond. Their shared aim is to inspire the next generation of healthcare professionals and develop their understanding of leadership. Too often in healthcare, leadership is confused with management. Through a combination of mentoring, Socratic discussion, and philosophical exploration, HLA aims to inspire our scholars to change the world of healthcare, one small step at a time.

At a time when the world seems an ever more worrying place, it is important that the next generation of healthcare professionals truly understand how to motivate the people they work with in order to best look after the populations they serve.


Dr Ali Jawad
Dr Ali Jawad
Associate Director at The Healthcare Leadership Academy

Ali is Associate Director at The Healthcare Leadership Academy. He is also a doctor in north-west London and an NHS Clinical Innovation and Entrepreneur Fellow as part of the first-ever cohort under the National Clinical Director for Innovation at NHS England.

He has a background in graphic design, technology, charities, management, and education. He regularly gives talks on innovation in medical education and has presented his research internationally. He continues to teach locally and also leads a national teaching course for medical students.


Johann  Malawana
Johann Malawana
Founder and Director of The Healthcare Leadership Academy and Medics.Academy
Johann has been in leadership roles for more than 18 years.

Johann is currently the Founder and CEO of Medics.Academy, the Founder and Managing Director of The HLA and the former Lead for Education and Training at Healthcare UK at the Department for International Trade.

Johann is best known as the former chair of the Junior Doctors Committee of the British Medical Association. However, he has held a variety of roles over 18 years.

Johann was a former President of Barts and The London Students’ Association, a former University of London Medical Students’ Officer at ULU and the founding Editor of The Medical Student. Following the crisis caused by Modernising Medical Careers (MMC) via Medical Training Application System (MTAS) in March 2007, Johann took over the Education and Training portfolio at the BMA in September 2007. He was responsible for a lot of detailed negotiations around the education and training environment in medicine for the next three years till 2010. He was credited with a lot of initiatives that improved the working and education lives of junior doctors. He was responsible for designing the first Interdeanery Transfer System and negotiated for it to be implemented in every Deanery in the UK.

As a result of this, Johann developed a strong representative and leadership reputation and was appointed to the boards of both the General Medical Council and the Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board. He undertook a lot of work on both boards to ensure the voices of medical students and junior doctors were heard. Johann served as an advisor on several reviews of the medical education environment with a strong belief in the need for strong medical leadership and the power of young doctors and medical students to be a force for good in the NHS. Many of the engagement strategies developed for these reviews were a direct result of the work Johann undertook.

Through The Healthcare Leadership Academy, Johann hopes to support healthcare professionals to feel more comfortable in leadership roles, to support them through the diverse and vibrant community that we have built up in their whole careers and to ensure that individuals do not feel isolated in leadership roles.


What projects are accepted onto The HLA IDEAS Programme?

We are open to accepting any non-profit organisations, including charities and CICs. However, due to governance issues, we can not accept:

  • Student societies that are registered with a student union.

For Student Societies, applications should be directed to the Medics.Academy Charity Partnership Programme who are supporting student societies directly. 

Do I need to be an HLA Scholar to apply?

No, the programme is open to all. 

Will there be funding given out for our projects?

The Programme has a cost equivalent of approximately £10,000 when compared to other incubators and accelerators. The HLA incorporates this cost into running the programme free to the organisations involved. No direct financial grants are offered through the programme.

How is HLA:Ideas Funded?

HLA:Ideas has been funded through a donation of £50,000 from the Medics.Academy Charity Partnership Programme. The HLA Community is supporting this programme through support from many of the incredible team and individuals that make up the wider HLA Community.