£1.3 million awarded to develop innovative new technologies that reduce pressures on A&E

SBRI Healthcare, an NHS England funded initiative to develop innovative products that address unmet health needs, today announced the 14 companies that will share £1.4 million funding to develop products that can significantly impact the increasing pressures being put on urgent and emergency care services.

The number of attendances at A&E has risen significantly in the last decade putting pressure on urgent and emergency care services and increasing waiting times.  According to the Kings Fund, 21.7 million visited A&E in 2013/14, a greater than 30% rise in the last decade.  More than 70% of hospital bed days are occupied by A&E admissions and 80% of A&E admissions who stay for more than two weeks are patients aged over 65.

With an average award of £98,000 each, the successful companies (and supporting Academic Health Science Network) are:

• Preventing Admissions: Serket Technology (Eastern AHSN), Mologic (East Midlands AHSN), Microbiosensor (Greater Manchester AHSN), Renephra (Greater Manchester AHSN), Careflow Connect (West of England AHSN) and Farewill (Imperial College AHSN)

• Coordinating Admissions: Ubisense Ltd (Eastern AHSN), Biovici (Wales), IXICO (UCLPartners) and Kernow Health Solutions (South West AHSN)

• Resource Planning: 365Response (Yorkshire & Humber AHSN), Snap40 (Scotland), SA IP (West of England AHSN), Cambridge Clinical Management Analytics (Eastern AHSN) and Ubisense Ltd (Eastern AHSN)

The South West Academic Health Science Network is supporting Kernow Health Solutions with their winning technology called Health ePass.  The technology is a patient held, patient entered record of their health comprising their medical conditions & medications.  It also provides an opportunity to record crucial contextual information (e.g. next of kin, mobility etc.) and has a section for scanned in documents such as hospital correspondence & care plans.  Its use puts patients at the centre of their care, allowing them to share their record when and with whom they want.  It is anticipated that it will save clinician time & facilitate a more collaborative approach to healthcare where patients are more actively engaged & empowered.

SBRI Healthcare works with leading healthcare organisations to identify areas where technology can be applied to address major healthcare challenges.  The successful projects have been selected on their potential value to the health service and on the improved outcomes delivered to patients.  The companies will be supported and fully funded to demonstrate the technical feasibility of their proposed concept and those businesses demonstrating best value and greatest technical feasibility in phase 1 will progress through to phase 2 to be further supported and funded to take their technologies through to commercialisation.

Jon Siddall, Director of Investment Partnerships at South West AHSN, said, “Emergency and urgent care is a very challenging area of work for the NHS.  The innovative ideas that we are announcing funding for today will hopefully bring new and creative solutions into this space that will improve care for patients and efficiency for the NHS.”

Richard Pratt, GP & Co-Director at Kernow Health Solutions said, “We are extremely excited at the opportunity afforded by the SBRI funding.  The simple idea of Health ePass was born out of our own experiences working as doctors in the Emergency Department.  It makes use of smartphone technology that most of us have in our pockets to better inform the conversations between patients and doctors.  We’ve met real excitement when explaining the concept of the app to patients, clinicians, local stakeholders & royal colleges.  The SBRI funding will be transformative and will help us to further harness this opportunity.  It will allow us to take Health ePass from working prototype, to a new version with refined feel and functionality, which is even more useful to clinicians & patients.”

SBRI Healthcare competition theme areas are chosen in partnership with the AHSNs across England and this programme is jointly led by South West and Greater Manchester AHSNs.

To find out more visit www.sbrihealthcare.co.uk

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