24th October, 2016

A national report has recognised the role of DigitalHealth.London in accelerating the adoption of digital innovation by linking health and care organisations with digital health innovators.

The collaborative partnership of DigitalHealth.London, made up of the capital’s three Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs), MedCity and NHS England, was held up as an example of current work to support demand and supply needs in digital health, in the Accelerated Access Review, published today.

Commissioned by the Government and led by an independent Chair, the Review makes clear recommendations on reforms to speed up patients’ access to innovative medicines, technologies and products. The aim is to make the UK a world-leader in healthcare innovation, with an NHS that embraces the new drugs and technologies that patients need.

The Review highlights key system changes, welcomed by DigitalHealth.London, which look to speed up and simplify the process for getting the most promising new treatments and diagnostics safely from pre-clinical development to patients. Through these recommendations, innovators would have access to joined-up help with clinical development, regulation and assessment of cost-effectiveness.

Digital health companies and SMEs, including the 31 companies that are part of the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator cohort, will also be supported through simpler processes to access and sell into the NHS market, offering a win-win scenario for the healthcare system and those developing transformative new products.

DigitalHealth.London Board Member and Managing Director of Imperial College Health Partners (ICHP), Axel Heitmueller, commented:

“We are delighted to see such strong endorsement of the AHSN offer in the Accelerated Access Review. It is refreshing to see policy that recognises the need to simultaneously work with innovators but also those adopting innovation and providing them with the right set of capabilities and capacity.

“We are particularly excited about the strong emphasis on the transformative role digital technologies will have to play. DigitalHealth.London has begun to show how a regional digital health catalyst can work in bringing together NHS need and digital solutions in unconventional ways.”

Jenny Thomas Programme Director at the DigitalHealth.London Accelerator said:

“We welcome the Review’s recommendations and believe it will make a huge difference in creating a more favourable environment to speed up the adoption of innovation at scale, ensuring that greater numbers of patients benefit from emerging new technology, more rapidly. With 31 innovative digital health solutions ready to be adopted, we are uniquely positioned to help solve some of the most pressing challenges facing the NHS.”

Health Minister Lord Prior said:

“This Government has a strong commitment to the life sciences and to building a long-term partnership with the life sciences industry. We are determined to make the UK the best place in the world to develop new drugs and other products that can transform the health of patients.

“The report provides us with a strong basis to make the right decisions about how the health system can be adapted to meet the challenges of the future, attract inward investment, grow the thriving life science industry and use innovation to improve patient outcomes and tackle the financial pressures on the NHS.”

Read the Accelerated Access Review here