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The challenges we face

Companies, especially SMEs, can face significant challenges to introduce their new and innovative products into the NHS. The complexity of public procurement, patient safety and a risk averse culture across multiple organisations can be daunting. The Innovation Nexus aims to provide a single source of resource that can help companies, particularly SMEs, understand the steps that need to be taken to support their business planning and engage with the NHS more easily, thus progressing the adoption of their innovation at pace and with fewer unanticipated obstacles.

a fully funded intensive support programme for life science SMEs working in Greater Manchester

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If you are a business with an innovative product or service that you believe has the potential to benefit the healthcare market, the Innovation Nexus can give you access a network of specialist advice and support.

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Funding Boost for Urgent and Emergency Care Services From SBRI Healthcare

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

Greater Manchester AHSN has been jointly leading this call with SBRI Healthcare, an NHS England funded initiative to develop innovative products that address unmet health needs, to develop products that can significantly impact the increasing pressures being put on urgent and emergency care services. 14 companies will share £1.3 million funding, with an average award of £96,500 each.

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.

The successful companies (and supporting Academic Health Science Network) are:

  • Resource Planning: 365Response (Yorkshire & Humber AHSN), Snap40 (Scotland), SA IP (West of England AHSN), The University of Cambridge (Eastern AHSN) and Ubisense Ltd (Eastern AHSN)
  • Coordinating Admissions: Ubisense Ltd (Eastern AHSN), Biovici (Wales), IXICO (UCLPartners) and Kernow Health Solutions (South West AHSN)
  • 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)

SBRI Healthcare works with leading healthcare organisations to identify areas where technology can be applied to address major healthcare challenges. The 15 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.

Linda Magee, Director of Industry & Wealth at GM AHSN, said,

“Our congratulations to both Renephra and Microbiosensor on their success with SBRI Phase 1 awards focused on reducing pressures on urgent and emergency care services. The companies attended our local information workshop on the SBRI call and it is a considerable validation of their innovations, both  aimed at preventing admissions, that they were selected by the expert panel amongst stiff competition.  In the case of Renephra we have already provided direct support to the development of their technology so this is an added boost.  For this competition GM AHSN,  alongside SW AHSN, developed the call with  SBRI as part of the national AHSN network support for the programme and I would also like to say a big thank you to our local clinicians and other experts for their very valuable input to this work delivered via the GM AHSN’s Innovation Nexus programme”.

Idalia Dawidowska of Renephra, commented on their award: 

“This funding is essential as it allows us to evaluate the potential of our technology to remove larger, clinically relevant volumes of fluid. This is a major step in developing a novel approach to treating hundreds of thousands advanced heart failure patients with diuretic resistant fluid overload. Currently those patients require large doses of intravenous diuretics to be administered in a hospital. This is inconvenient, associated with risk of kidney injury and expensive. We aim to develop a gentler and safer treatment that can be delivered at home while improving outcomes and reducing costs."

Gordon Barker, CEO of Microbiosensor remarked:

"This new SBRI contract will have a huge impact on the business, allowing Microbiosensor to develop its technology platform for an entirely new market where there is a significant unmet medical need. UTIs are a growing problem and the 3rd most common cause of emergency admission to hospital from A&E departments. The novel medical device we are developing will not only flag an emerging infection much earlier than is currently possible, but it will also signal which antibiotic will be most effective at treating it: reducing emergency admissions to hospital, improving patient health, saving the NHS money and ultimately improving the management of the NHS's every dwindling arsenal of frontline antibiotic drugs."


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