Three London academic health science networks are collaborating on a new initiative to digital health innovation.
The DigitalHealth.London initiative will create a network of clinicians, healthcare providers, research institutes and entrepreneurs to drive the creation of, and access to, revolutionary healthcare technologies shaped by patients' needs.
London mayor Boris Johnson: “This initiative will position London at the forefront of digital innovation - bringing together the city's world-class strengths in life sciences and digital technology and channeling that innovation to develop new ground-breaking products.”
The programme was established in the wake of recommending London create a digital healthcare hub to better achieve its ambitions of becoming “the world's healthiest major global city”.
Its three academic partners - Health Innovation Network, Imperial College Health Partners and UCLPartners - are joined by MedCity, the Mayor's life sciences promotional agency for the greater southeast.
Together, they will improve NHS procurement processes and routes to market, promote research and streamline communications between clinicians, patients and developers.
Professor Joanne Hackett, director of commercial development at UCLPartners, said: “Our focus through this initiative is to bring health services and industry into the same space so that by understanding each other better we create an environment in which small business can grow - enriching both our economy and our well-being.”
The London Health Commission has expressed its ambition to generate 50,000 new jobs in the digital health sector, an objective reflected in DigitalHealth.London's first project, which is also launched today.
The new Digital Accelerator programme will support emerging SMEs in development of their products through consultation with clinicians and healthcare experts as well as creating opportunities to implement these in hospitals.
Over an initial three-year period, 90 digital health businesses will be chosen to take part in the programme, which is jointly sponsored by the European Regional Development Fund, Guy & St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, UCLPartners, Imperial College Healthcare Partners, Chelsea and Westminster Health Charity, MedCity and Digital Catapult.
The first information day on how to apply to the Digital Accelerator programme will be held on 7 March.