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Government puts up £5 million for digital health innovations


The Government has made £5 million available to support projects develop new digital technologies for healthcare.

National innovation agency Innovate UK is to run a competition under the Digital Health Technology Catalyst programme and with money from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

It has said the technologies could include virtual and augmented reality, AI and machine learning, the internet of things, and data analytics and security.

The ideas can be for clinical or non-clinical settings, including improving access to healthcare, and have to do at least one of: improving health and wellbeing; transforming care to improve quality; or controlling costs and enabling change.

Innovate UK said that businesses could get up to 70% of their project costs, which could be between £300,000 and £1 million, with projects due to begin next October to run for up to 18 months.

The winners will also receive support from DataLab, the arm of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) that provides data advisory services. This extends to the application of real world data, ensuring it is secure, how to evaluate digital health interventions, and scientific advice from NICE.

While the competition is focused on UK based small and medium sized businesses, they can collaborate with public sector bodies such as NHS organisations and universities, or with charities.

Image by Matt Madd, CC BY 2.0 through flickr

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