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Bridging the Gap for healthtech innovators

Posted: 23rd March 2022

More than 130 innovators from across England as well as delegates from industry and NHS came together in Leeds for the latest in the Bridging the Gap series of events which we hosted on behalf of the AHSN Network.

Bridging the Gap is a free, face-to-face event for healthtech innovators and gives them a chance to better understand how the AHSN Network and our national and regional partners can support their development and growth, ensure that their innovations are market-ready and help them navigate the complexities of working with the NHS.

As well as hearing from the AHSN Network, delegates heard speakers from NHS England and NHS Improvement, the Association of British HealthTech Industries, and leaders from local and regional NHS organisations as well as innovators who have already had success in the market with assistance from the Network and its partners.

Matt Whitty, CEO of Accelerated Access Collaborative and Director of Innovation, Research and Life Sciences at NHS England and NHS Improvement, explained how the Accelerated Access Collaborative can support innovators. He encouraged companies to work with their regional AHSNs to help connect them with partners across sectors, ensuring that their solutions can reach the right channels to speed up the adoption of their products and services.

Richard Devereaux Phillips, Director of Strategy at ABHI also joined the event giving delegates an insight on how ABHI represents the healthtech industry to help companies thrive by providing support and networking opportunities as well as information on how to navigate the financial, procurement and regulatory maze of the healthcare sector.

Neville Young, Director of Enterprise and Innovation at Yorkshire & Humber AHSN, said: “In many ways, you could say that Bridging the Gap is a supercharged networking event. We want to engage with innovators, let them know about the latest thinking and opportunities in the NHS to help them build their products in a way that really serves the needs of the NHS and benefits patients in our region and beyond”.

The event was aimed at health technology innovators and companies who had an interest in accessing the health and care marketplace. On the day, delegates had the opportunity to listen to a range of talks, participate in workshops visit marketplace stands hosted by a range of our partners and network with colleagues. Some were also able to book one-to-one sessions with Commercial Directors from the AHSN Network to receive the benefit of their advice and expertise.

Delegates received advice about how to effectively engage with the NHS and had the opportunity to learn how decisions are made, who makes them and how to get their attention.

Delegates were also able to find out more about the upcoming changes to NHS infrastructure, local NHS priorities and approaches, how AHSN support can bridge the gap between industry and the NHS and national programmes and resources they could benefit from.

Get in touch if you have an innovation you would like to discuss with us or you would like to find out more about what we do and how we can help your organisation by emailing