Shaper: Dr Lydia Yarlott

Dr Lydia Yarlott is a Paediatrician and Co-Founder of Forward Health, a tech start-up that has developed a secure messaging and workflow app, enabling healthcare professionals to communicate and collaborate effectively.

Being “struck by how much time (she) was wasting trying to navigate switchboards or responding to (her) pager,” Lydia’s husband encouraged her to solve the problem and together, alongside friend Dr Barney Gilbert, the trio founded Forward Health. Believing effective communication is the “single most important factor” in healthcare, it’s Forward Health’s mission to bring together the world’s largest network of healthcare professionals.

Knowing she wanted to be a Doctor from the age of 11, Lydia studied towards a BMBCh, BA (Infection and Immunology), Medicine at Oxford University between 2008-2015, and since been named as one of the “10 women who lead the way in Medtech” (2019) and won ‘Entrepreneur Future Star’ at the Future Stars of Tech Awards in 2018.

“There aren’t many doctors who work part-time on a business. I think thinks it’s a beautiful combination.”

“I think it’s a great advantage in life to know where you are headed.”

“It is a very instinctive thing being interested in the body, being fascinated by slightly morbid things like disease, ill-health and death.”

“I’m the sort of person that can’t ignore issues in front of my nose.”

“We believe that healthcare professionals should have the tools that they need to do the job.”

“One of our goals is to make communication within our organisation our main priority.”

“Great Ormond Street are doing some really interesting things with innovation, pushing technology in a way that it hasn’t been pushed before.”

“There is a changing landscape in terms of how the NHS thinks about bringing in technology.”

“It’s crucial that we imbed trust in what we do.”