“The ever increasing pressures on hospital emergency departments are well documented globally and not just in the NHS. The next competition from SBRI Healthcare seeks to reduce demand and length of stay within emergency departments.“
Chris Padgett, Programme Assistant – Innovation & Industry

SBRI Healthcare is an NHS England funded initiative led by the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) to develop technology solutions for known healthcare challenges. The next funding round focuses on finding innovative solutions to reduce demand and the length of stay within emergency departments.

The ever increasing pressures on hospital emergency departments (EDs) are well documented globally
and not just in the NHS and, despite many years of innovation, growth in numbers arriving at the doors
of the ED continues. The reasons for this growth are multifactorial and some demographics show
particular issues: children and young people have a significantly higher inappropriate/non-urgent
attendance at ED than adults and the proportion of those of all ages with respiratory conditions has
grown rapidly over the past few years.

There are some signs of ability to reduce this growth significantly from the work done in the
Vanguards, which recognise the need to address the wider system and not simply provide point
solutions. This is referenced in the NHS Long Term Plan that has very ambitious targets for reducing
hospital admissions.

This competition seeks to address two primary issues, taking into account the systemic complexity
and recognising some of the key demographic differences. So the request is for solutions that will:

  1. Reduce demand
    1. Recognising differences for adults vs children and young people
    2. Recognising that respiratory conditions in all ages account for a rapidly growing proportion of attendances
  2. Reduce the length of stay in the Emergency Department
    1. By more efficient triage, streaming and treatment
    2. By more efficient discharge or admission to the hospital

Applicants are asked to consider the impact of their innovation on the whole system and to be aware
of the competitive environment, even considering working together with other companies to bring
forward solutions that can make a real difference.

The COVID-19 emergency has forced changes already and there are some innovations being
implemented and tested. Applicants should consider that the baseline they need to innovate from
may be different already from that in January 2020. This competition is open to supporting the further
development and evaluation of technologies already used experimentally to help in this crisis.

Read more and apply here