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US innovators attended first Propel@YH Boot Camp

Posted: 22nd April 2022

The week of 21st March 2022 was a busy time for the Yorkshire & Humber AHSN as we hosted our first international Propel@YH Boot Camp – a week-long accelerator programme supporting US SMEs to bring their products to the UK healthcare market.

In partnership with the Department of International Trade and the Texas Medical Centre, the aim of the programme was to provide the cohort with a short, but intensive course, on the UK healthcare market with access to subject matter experts, masterclasses and networking opportunities.

This programme builds on our existing Propel@YH digital accelerator, which is now in its third year.

The Boot Camp was centred on numerous masterclasses covering:

  • understanding the NHS
  • Growth and spread strategies
  • evaluation, governance, legal and sustainability.

These sessions were delivered through several key partners including York Health Economics Consortium, Nexus and the University of Leeds, Barclays Eagle Labs, Hill Dickinson, Leeds City Council, Device Access UK and ORCHA.

Networking and introducing the cohort to partners that can support them was key to the programme.  We facilitated over 120 hours of networking opportunities, part of this was through Bridging the Gap – an event that gave the SMEs the opportunity to receive support to navigate the complexities of working with the NHS.

The US Health Tech suppliers managed to secure eight opportunities with the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Innovation Hub and an introduction to the Yorkshire and Humber Sepsis lead. Over £15,000 was invested in the local Leeds region through utilsing several services including Nexus, Avenue HQ and the Queens hotel.

Feedback from the US suppliers was very positive and included the following comments:

“Excellent overview of the NHS”

“Very helpful understanding the complexity of the NHS”

“Great session and Mike came super prepared knowing the attendees. It was a soft sales pitch that I enjoyed every minute of it”

“Great way to understand the road into the NHS”

Based on the success of the US Boot Camp, we have plans to make this accelerator programme a regular feature of the Propel@YH programmes and are currently working on a re-run of the programme in September with some FinTech Health Tech suppliers. In time, the aim is to  roll the Boot Camp  out to other international territories and so we can support the adoption and spread of Innovation from around the world.

Neville Young, Director of Enterprise and Innovation said: “We had five companies coming over from the US to attend the Propel@YH US Boot Camp, they see the value of the NHS as a market that they want to be in. They are keen to understand the challenges we have. If they come to the UK they will bring jobs and investment and that’s great for the region and the country. We are really pleased with the feedback from the delegates and the value that we have provided through the Boot Camp.”

Tim East, Digital Navigator said: “The Propel US Boot Camp is a week of support where we help five US Health Tech suppliers through masterclasses and networking opportunities. It’s a spin off from the 6 month Propel@YH accelerator programme. We are really pleased with the positive feedback from the delegates and look forward to supporting them further with their journey into the NHS.”

We’ll also be launching applications for the fourth cohort of Propel@YH later this year and will share details about this closer to the time.