The NHS is set to benefit from better diagnosis and treatment thanks to new technology facilities that will streamline research into real-world solutions.
The National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) has allocated £42m for 14 new HealthTech Research Centres, which will collaborate with industry to develop medical devices, diagnostics and digital technologies.
The new equipment will enable people to better monitor their health, diagnose illnesses faster and improve condition management for things like cancer and dementia.
The centres will also work with companies to support people with rehabilitation needs within the social care sector.
The centres will come into force from 1 April 2024 and will follow the NIHR’s successful MedTech and In Vitro Diagnostic Co-operative scheme, which will end the preceding March.
Researchers will develop technologies for hospitals, general practice, community settings, and social care, meaning patients will be able to benefit from the scheme’s innovation wherever they present.
Under the new scheme, each facility will be hosted by an NHS organisation in England, ultimately centralising the expertise of industry, academia and the health service.
The NIHR’s chief executive, Professor Lucy Chappell, said: “Research into health technology is recognised as being of vital importance for patients, carers and users, our workforce, and the wider health and care system.”
Prof Chappell, who is also the Department of Health and Social Care’s chief scientific adviser, continued: “Our existing research centres in MedTech have delivered new technologies that have helped prevent, diagnose and treat ill health for many individuals, as well as ensuring increased efficiencies in the health and care system.
“The increased funding for the HealthTech Research Centres will build capacity and expertise in health technologies, bring new innovations to market and enable people to live healthier, better-quality lives.”
To learn more about how the NHS’s digital transformation journey is progressing, register for National Health Executive’s Digital Health virtual event.
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