A novel diagnostic test for bowel cancer, a remote wound management service and 'Fit Reds' were among the winners of the Medipex 2011 National Health Service Innovation Awards, announced on Thursday 22nd September.

Now in their seventh year, the Awards recognise NHS staff members across the Yorkshire & Humber and East Midlands regions who have developed innovative ideas to improve patient care.

Two hundred people from across the NHS and medical technology industry attended the Awards, hosted at Cedar Court Hotel in Wakefield. The annual competition forms a key part of Medipex's work to promote innovation within the NHS, helping innovators to develop their ideas and linking medical technology companies with clinical staff to facilitate product development and clinical trials. Medipex received over 120 entries and twenty-five clinical teams were shortlisted across five categories. Fit Reds won the 'GP and Primary Care' category and £2000 prize money!

Staff commissioned by NHS Barnsley including Community Development & Health Workers and Health Trainers from Barnsley Association of Community Partnerships and Priory Campus and Barnsley Football Club's Community Sports and Education Trust's Health Officer have been involved in implementing a healthy lifestyle and weight management project called Fit Reds.

Using the first-team facilities at Barnsley Football Club, the participants - all of whom are male Barnsley residents, aged over 35 and who consider themselves to be overweight/inactive - receive a mix of healthy lifestyle advice and physical activity over an eight week programme. To date, the 66 men who have completed the course have lost a combined total of 42 stone 12 pounds in weight and 83% of them have lowered their blood pressure as a direct result of their participation.

Bobby Hassell, Barnsley Football Club's current longest serving player and Fit Red's Ambassador regularly attends to motivate and support the participants. Still in its first year, Fit Reds, has already achieved some outstanding results, will have run six eight-week programmes and now has won a prestigious regional award.

For more info or how to join Fit Reds please phone 01226 737031 or email darren.england@barnsleyfc.co.uk.