The Health Innovation Hub saw an uptick in start-ups addressing global health trends through technology in this year’s Health Innovations call.
The annual call asks companies, start-ups and SMEs across the country to submit their ideas for pre-commercial products, solutions or services that could “significantly impact” healthcare in Ireland.
Given the global effects of the Covid-19 pandemic this year, Health Innovation Hub Ireland noted a “marked surge” in the applications forming health solutions that “reflect global health trends”. In total, 48 companies applied.
Successful applicants will benefit from a “unique innovation pathway” to pilot or validation studies, getting access to clinical teams, product studies in clinical settings, outcome reports and support for the adoption of products in national and international markets, among other benefits.
The 15 winners were narrowed down from 23 that entered into a “Dragons’ Den-style pitch panel”, placing them before representatives from the HSE, Enterprise Ireland, the Health Research Board, the Department of Health and more.
Making lives easier
Of the final 15, five proposed solutions address supporting self-management of chronic illness.
The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Leo Varadkar, TD, said: “These successful 15 innovators have been chosen for their use of technology to make it easier for patients to manage chronic conditions, and to help with early diagnosis and prevention.”
Among the winners are Hygiene Audits, a software solution aimed at preventing infection in nursing homes, and Bond Platform Ramblegard, a technology monitoring patient activity and falls.
The 15 winners of Health Innovations 2020 are as follows:
- Stratos Medical
- Lynch’s Pharmacy
- Hygiene Audits
- Nua Surgical
- My Gut Solution
- Bluedrop Medical
- Plexa Medical
Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly, TD, described innovation as “essential as we reimagine our health service and implement Sláintecare”.
Paul Reid, CEO at the HSE, highlighted the similarities between the winning proposals and the country’s response to Covid-19, both of which have used “the latest technology to deliver health services to patients”.
“For example, services have been working to connect with people using telehealth, providing consultations to patients by phone or on video calls,” he said.
“Innovation in the health sector enhances outcomes for our patients and makes care delivery easier for our staff, and finding new and exciting ways to address and treat chronic illness in particular benefits us all.”