Health Innovation Challenge Fund: Innovative Diagnostics

Products that could realize a step-change in performance rather than substituting for an existing established technique are of particular interest for this call: Faster, cheaper, more accurate, more portable, user friendly and easily interfaced/connected technologies, used in either a central reference laboratory, hospital, or at the point of care.

Health Innovation Challenge Fund: Innovative Diagnostics

Key points/focus:

Advances in diagnostics can bring significant patient and economic benefit. Technologies that are faster, cheaper, more accurate, more portable, user friendly and easily interfaced/connected with healthcare systems have the potential to increase productivity, improve care pathways and reduce NHS workload. Products that could realize a step change in performance rather than substituting for an existing established technique are of particular interest for this call. The solution may be situated in either a central reference laboratory, hospital setting or be portable and used at the point of care. Applications are invited that:

  • provide novel diagnostic tests or procedures which are more accurate/faster/more cost effective than their existing equivalents
  • permit timely diagnosis of conditions where no test currently exists or where the present turnaround time is protracted
  • enable both diagnosis and monitoring of the patient’s response to treatment
  • offer solutions that can be readily integrated into and deployed widely across UK healthcare systems and beyond
Specifically out of scope for this call are:
  • projects centering on the monitoring of chronic or long term illness
  • telehealthcare and telemedicine
  • biomarker discovery
  • diagnostic tests that utilise nucleic acid sequencing
End of Grant Research Report must be submitted within three months of the grant end date.

Other comments:

All proposals must meet the Essential Requirements of the HICF scheme and address at least one of its specific themes, addressing either a single theme within the current call or spanning several themes. Project teams must contain strong clinical representation and will preferably be clinically led. Projects must advance to first testing in man within the duration of the HICF project and have the potential to benefit patients within the following 3-5 years, having demonstrated efficacy and received regulatory approvals. Projects must have already demonstrated ‘proof-of-principle’ supported by experimental and, where feasible, in vivo data. Projects must include a plan to progress the technology or intervention to the stage at which it is sufficiently validated, de-risked or developed to be attractive to commercial organisations, not-for-profit organisations and/or healthcare providers. Proposals must include a commercial strategy that takes into account the regulatory pathway, IP management, commercial barriers, health economics and routes to market. The HICF will not fund

  • early stage/ basic research
  • clinical trials
  • health delivery research by the NHS
  • delivery or provision of health services by or within the NHS
  • projects that could secure funding from industry or venture capital
  • drug development
  • regenerative medicine or vaccine development programs

Applications Procedure:

Forms and guidance notes can be found on the Wellcome Trust website.

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