The package will allow small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to develop and test new technologies in the NHS. This could include innovations such as digital technologies to help patients manage their conditions from home instead of a hospital, or to develop new medicines. Access to this funding will also speed up the time it takes to get new technologies from the lab to patients in the NHS.
The announcement is the first step in taking forward the Accelerated Access Review (AAR) – an independently chaired review, which made recommendations to government on speeding up patient access to new technologies.
The funding is split into four packages, including:
- £39 million of funding to the Academic Health Science Networks (ASHNs), enabling them to assess the benefits of new technologies and support NHS uptake of those that deliver real benefits to patients according to the local need.
- £35 million Digital Health Technology Catalyst for innovators – this will match-fund the development of digital technologies for use by patients and the NHS.
- Up to £6 million over the next three years to help SMEs with innovative medicines and devices get the evidence they need by testing in the real world, building on existing opportunities such as the Early Access to Medicine Scheme (EAMS).
- £6 million Pathway Transformation Fund, which will help NHS organisations integrate new technologies into everyday practices – this will help overcome more practical obstacles such as training staff on how to use new equipment.
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