What is the big idea that will guide and inform the development of the NHS throughout the next decade?

For all the sound and fury around GP commissioning, the idea itself is nearly 20 years old. Patient choice and the foundation trust movement appeared on the policy agenda at the start of the last decade.

All health systems need regular injections of perceptive blue-sky thinking which capture and address the changing needs and demands of the population, as well as a country’s economic and social context. Public sector and NHS reform are almost inspired by iconoclastic ideas which are then mainstreamed.

There have been few really significant new ideas on the health block - when compared, for example, with the growing momentum around welfare reform. HSJ wants to change that, to raise the profile of thought leadership throughout health.

We have teamed up with Circle to launch the Circle Prize for Inspiring Innovation. Think of it as the Booker Prize for thought leaders in health. The winner will receive £20,000 - unprecedented for this kind of work.

We are looking for the author, researcher or commentator who has developed the idea with the potential to transform the UK healthcare system. The idea will be judged on its potential to improve one or more of the following criteria: patient outcomes, patient safety, patient experience, efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

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The Circle Prize for Inspiring Innovation