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Part of the largest push yet to rapidly increase the speed of digital health products take up in the NHS.

After a highly competitive process, two East Midlands companies and their digital solutions have been selected as some of the highest potential and best-placed to help England’s NHS meet the challenges of an ageing population and scarce resources.

The two East Midlands companies chosen are

1) Howz, made by the companyIntelesant Ltd, provides reassurance and insights for older people and patients with long-term conditions or multiple conditions.  It helps them to detect changes in their health early so they can take action before reach health crisis. The system provides information via an app or webportal with sharing facilities enabling patients to share their data easily and securely with health and care professionals and their family.  

Howz is built to integrate with mainstream IT systems, making access to information easy for NHS organisations and other carers.

Says Louise Rogerson, Chief Operating Officer at Intelesant:  “We are delighted that Howz has been chosen to be part of the East Midlands Digital Accelerator and we are looking forward to working with the EMAHSN to raise our profile with patients and the NHS.  Howz provides peace of mind for patients and their families and facilitates early intervention before health issues become more serious.”

2) Spirit Digitalwho have developed the CliniTouch Vie digital solution to help patients manage their health conditions and prevent avoidable admissions to hospital.  CliniTouch Vie is a locked-down tablet provided with integrated 3G providing intensive monitoring, patient education and empowerment.  It features integrated direct messaging and video support. Dynamic care plans and evidence-based algorithms enable automatic triage for healthcare teams.  

CliniTouch Vie, when used alongside clinical health coaching, has achieved a 67% reduction in unscheduled COPD admissions & saving of £2,278 per patient.

Emma-Jane Roberts, Managing Director at Spirit Digital, said:  “We know CliniTouch Vie can reduce emergency admissions, give patients more control over their health and save the NHS money.  Thanks to support from the East Midlands Digital Accelerator we will be able to talk to more NHS organisations about using remote monitoring and reach more patients with long-term conditions who could really benefit from our technology.”

The East Midlands accelerator is one of five launching across England today - building on the successful DigitalHealth.London Accelerator.

The schemes are run by the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs), the innovation arm of the NHS, and their partners, and launch today in London, Manchester, the South West, East Midlands, Kent, Surrey and Sussex.

It is the first time it has operated beyond London, where a successful accelerator has been running for two years, saving in excess of £50 million for the NHS and working with 60 companies. The London programme generated 169 jobs for Londoners in just two years. The digital health market in England is expected to reach almost £43 billion by 2018 and £408 billion by 2025.

With five English regions now running Digital Health Accelerators, AHSNs and their partners hope to build on these results, whilst enabling the public to benefit more quickly from the latest technology to improve their care.

The successful SMEs will receive:

  • One-to-one support from a designated ‘NHS Navigator’: someone with strong clinical or NHS provider experience, who really know the NHS, and can help companies approach it
  • 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.

Mike Hannay, Managing Director of the East Midlands AHSN and Chair of the national network of AHSNs, which run the accelerator schemes with partners said: “There are hundreds of thousands of health and care apps and innovations on the market.  It’s unreasonable to expect busy NHS staff to keep on top of all them. That’s where we come in to help the NHS find and use the latest, affordable innovation that will change people’s lives and help make sure our world-renowned health system is fit for generations to come.

“Despite the array of talent and resources available, there is room for much better collaboration between SMEs and the health system to increase England’s competitiveness in digital innovation. Connections between entrepreneurial innovation and health are essential for England to realise its potential and become a world leader in digital health innovation. With Brexit on the horizon, this scheme is more important than ever before. We have seen rapid growth in the companies supported by our existing London accelerator and we look forward to building on this with the next generation of start-ups.”

Dr Mark Harmon, Strategic Director at eConsult, one of the companies that took part in the 2017-18 London accelerator said:  "For small health companies and start-ups, the NHS can be a very difficult place to navigate and do business. Whilst wanting to make positive changes for a sustainable NHS, there can be significant barriers to overcome.

“Working with the London Accelerator programme has helped us with contacts and getting to the people that matter, and in turn contributed to an acceleration in our growth. Before the programme we were live in approximately 350 practices, we are now live in over 500 and mobilising a further 1000 practices. The expansion of this scheme should really help other digital health businesses in the country to succeed, too."

Successful companies from other companies include:

  • Forward Clinical Ltd: a secure messaging and workflow app created by doctors that could save hospital doctors an average of 42 minutes per shift versus current communication tools. In results in faster patient flow, lowering length of stays in hospital, and decreasing the time taken to see the right specialist(s).
  • Healthy.io: turning smartphones into regulatory approved clinical devices for urine testing.
  • My Possible Self: a mental health app proven to reduce stress, anxiety and depression in just eight weeks by helping users overcome day-to-day problems, manage fear and improve happiness and wellbeing.
  • Signum Health: a system to help GP and other healthcare professionals to refer patients easily to social care providers.
  • Trustedoctor: a platform using a cloud-based, open platform that allows specialist physicians to quickly assess patients and consult with expert colleagues in a virtual setting.  Doctors and patients can securely exchange medical files and establish video consultations with live imaging.

See more about how the NHS is exploring new digital innovations here.

- ENDS –

Media enquiries and further information:

Chris Taylor 0115 748 4242 / chris.taylor@nottingham.ac.uk  

Sarah Hewitt 0115 748 4243 / sarah.hewitt2@nottingham.ac.uk  

Notes to editors

  • Building on the successes of the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, four new regional digital health accelerators have been set up by South West AHSN, East Midlands AHSN, Health Innovation Manchester, and Kent Surrey and Sussex AHSN.
  • There are 15 AHSNs across England, established by NHS England in 2013 to spread innovation at pace and scale – improving health and generating economic growth. Each AHSN works across a distinct geography serving a different population in each region.
  • The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator is a partnership between London’s three Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) (Health Innovation Network, Imperial College Health Partners, UCLPartners), MedCity, and CW+. It is supported by the Mayor of London and is receiving up to £1.7 million of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding.
  • The full list of companies the five accelerators will work with are:
  • Healum LtdSynopsis HealthcareForward Clinical LtdIOCOMHealth NavigatorMeeTwo Education LtdTrakka Medical (HaMpton app)Locum's NestMy Possible SelfMyMed Ltd (trading as Q doctor) 23 LtdDoc Reports LTD (trading as i-GP)Trayned Insight LtdSentimoto LtdDr Julian Medical Group LtdActive Health Tech Limited (trading as TrackActive)Trustedoctor LtdT7 TechnologyDr ToolboxAccuRx LtdDigital Medical Supply UK (trading as LIVI)Lavanya Plus LtdUltramedSpirit Digital (CliniTouch Vie)Signum Health Red Ninja MSKNoteLiquid Bronze (Malinko) K2 Medical Intelesant (Howz)Hospify Healthy.ioHealth and Care Innovations LLP Clinical Design Technologies Brain in Hand