The Leeds Health and Social Care Hub has been formally launched with the development of digital health and medical technology as one of its core workstreams.
The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) announced the launch, saying the hub brings it together with local partners to improve health outcomes in the region.
It outlined three main projects, one of which is to boost the health and social care economy through making Leeds a location of choice for relevant businesses, especially those in digital health and medical technology.
The will include supporting the Innovation Arc, a project for the creation of a series of innovation neighbourhoods, working to attract talent into opportunities in emerging health technology, and supporting partnerships between life sciences, businesses, academics, healthcare providers and policy makers.
The other two main areas are to make the health sector in the region the employer of choice for many local people, and to bring together partners to address policy challenges in health and care with a focus on health disparities.
Health Minister Maria Caulfield MP said: “The Leeds Health and Social Care Hub provides a welcome platform for us to forge closer and stronger working relationships with our partners in Leeds and the north of England.
“It will allow us to entice more talented health and care workers, as well as organisations, to the region, boosting both the local workforce and the economy.
“Together, we will work on a comprehensive vision to improve health and social care outcomes and come up with innovative solutions to tackle health disparities across the north of England.”
Partner organisation in the hub include Leeds City Council, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, NHS England, West Yorkshire Integrated Care System, the University of Leeds, Leeds Becket University, Yorkshire and Humber Academic Health Science Network, the Leeds Health and Care Academy, Leeds and York Partnerships NHS Foundation Trust, Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust and Forum Central.
Leeds already has a strong presence in the digital health field having been the home of NHS Digital until its recent merger into NHS England. It also hosts the new West Yorkshire Innovation Hub, set up to ensure residents can benefit from new innovations.