Digital health businesses called on to solve NHS challenges with innovation as popular scheme expands across the country
From today (Monday 26 February 2018), SMEs across four UK regions can compete to join innovative regional digital health accelerators, launched for the first time outside of London to help develop and deploy digital solutions to some of the most pressing challenges facing the NHS.
The new scheme builds on the success of the London-based DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, and will launch across three additional locations for the first time today: East Midlands, Manchester, and South West England. Each accelerator will select companies with digital innovations that match NHS needs. By speeding up access to the latest digital technologies, the accelerators will ensure that thousands of people benefit from latest technologies to improve their health and that high potential companies grow faster, supporting economic growth across the regions.
Previously, the digital health accelerator initiative had only operated in London, where it has supported the growth of technologies including smartphone app that slashes A&E waiting times, a digital lifestyle management platform that can reverse type 2 diabetes, and a “USB port for the body” that can host a bionic limb.
Building on this model, the successful SMEs in each new region will receive:
- One-to-one support from a designated “NHS Navigator”
- Specialist training
- Support with product development
- Opportunities to meet experts from business, clinical, and government backgrounds
- Regular opportunities to showcase their products with NHS decision-makers and influencers
Juliet Bauer, Chief Digital Officer at NHS England, said: “In its 70th year the NHS continues to support the spread of cutting edge innovation, from championing specific innovations to supporting frontline clinicians to develop their services. This NHS initiative has already provided London patients with access to a range of exciting digital innovations, I look forward to seeing patients from across the country benefit as more companies are supported to bring their innovations into the NHS.”
Hannah Harniess, Programme Director at DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, said: “When SMEs with fantastic products can’t access the NHS, it is patients that miss out. We’ve seen time and time again that digital technologies can make a major difference and help the NHS save resource – whether it’s slashing waiting times in A&E or helping people to manage long term conditions and live healthier lives. By taking our successful model to four new locations across the country, we know we’ll meet even more incredible companies with innovative products that can help the NHS.”
Elliott Engers, CEO of DigitalHealth.London company Infinity Health, said: “Being a member of the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator has been an extremely valuable experience for us. As a direct result of the programme we have had the opportunity to meet with senior NHS stakeholders in London. Additionally, we have had the privilege of working with the most experienced health economists and researchers in the country, allowing us to better understand the impact Infinity has on clinical practice and the research methodology necessary to develop a robust evidence-base for our core product.”
The existing London-based programme has worked with 61 companies and provided 600 hours of support, helped secure 27 research collaborations, and supported companies to launch 25 new products. Additionally, alumni have secured more than £15 million in funding, and 12 NHS contracts.
A series of webinars have been organised aimed at companies who are considering applying to take part in one of the Accelerators for 2018-19. They will cover the key things companies need to know about the initiative, including the application process and criteria. There will be opportunities to ask questions of team members from the accelerators.
Find out more
- East Midlands Digital Health Accelerator
- Manchester Digital Health Accelerator
- South West Digital Health Accelerator
- DigitalHealth.London Accelerator
Companies interested in taking part should apply at: www.digitalhealthaccelerator.fluidreview.com.