Organisations can apply for a share of £300,000, including VAT, to address foot problems, hospital care after admission and bone care for diabetes patients in Scotland.
You must propose a solution to one of the three challenges in each application. If you want to apply for more than one challenge, you will need to submit a separate application for each challenge.
Additional information on the clinical background to the challenges will be available when you register for the competition.
Challenge A: Diabetic foot ulceration
Your project must develop an automated mechanism that assesses the risk of diabetic foot ulceration. The mechanism must:
- Use recognised risk factors
- Be suitable for use at the point of care (POC)
- Work with new or existing datasets
- Create algorithms using artificial intelligence or machine learning, or a combination of both
The new algorithms must:
- Use data extraction and integration to address individual risk stratification for foot ulceration and amputation
- Tackle risk factor management for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality
The technology must provide feedback reports and alerts of foot and mortality risk. These can be through audio-visual, haptic or bio-feedback, as critical components and active ingredients in effective behaviour change interventions.
The technology can include software applications, data-exchange integration platforms and innovative technology including novel POC approaches. These must aid clinical and patient-facing models for personalised risk stratification, monitoring, targeted interventions or treatment decision support.
Solutions may also consider expansion of POC applications that capture and integrate other processes of care through assessment of additional diabetes risk. This can include factor screening for blood pressure, urine micro albumin measurement and retinal imaging.
Your project must also have:
- The ability to be effectively and securely integrated to NHS Scotland IT infrastructure
- An understanding of how any technology solutions or products will be economically sound and affordable for the NHS if adopted
Challenge B: Diabetes care pathway for inpatients
Your project must develop a decision support tool and alert mechanism for clinical staff. This must improve the care of patients admitted to hospital, with a pre-existing diagnosis of diabetes. The tool must use available inpatient data sources to:
- Improve triage
- Prevent medication errors
- Identify emergencies
- Streamline the diabetes care pathway
By improving the clinical care of inpatients with a pre-existing diagnosis of diabetes, the support tool will deliver safer and better care on admission to hospital. This would include:
- Managing and reporting hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar)
- Guided insulin prescribing
- Improved management of blood glucose
In phase 1 you will focus on a three-month exploratory project with clinicians with the aim to get a deep understanding of clinical pathways and the most pressing needs.
To improve the identification (case finding) of people at risk of osteoporosis and fracture, including those with diabetes your project must:
- Develop improved, less manual mechanisms of identifying patients with fractures who should be followed up by the Fracture Liaison Service (FLS). This may extend to automation of existing processes which largely rely on radiology reports from X-ray imaging. Images will be available if required.
- Develop a more tailored solution to FLS identification for patients with diabetes that may require access to detailed clinical data collected over a period of time, such as glucose control and adherence to therapy.
Data sources available for this challenge include unstructured radiology reports, emergency department attendance reports (ED Trak), national diabetes dataset (SCI diabetes), bone metabolism data, and a historic dataset of patients identified to be at risk.
You must propose a solution to one of the three challenges specified in the Scope section, in each application. If you want to apply for more than one challenge, you will need to submit a separate application for each challenge.
In phase 1 for each challenge you must work closely with the stakeholders to develop a solution. In phase 2 the outcome of your project will be a prototype of the solution.
Phase 1: Technical feasibility studies
This means planned research or critical investigation to gain new knowledge and skills for developing new products, processes or services.
Phase 2: Prototype development and evaluation
This can include prototyping, demonstrating, piloting, testing and validation of new or improved products, processes or services in environments representative of real-life operating conditions. The primary objective is to make further technical improvements on products, processes or services that are not substantially set.
To lead a project, you can:
- Be an organisation of any size
- Work alone or with others from business, the research base or the third sector as subcontractors
Contracts will be awarded only to individual organisations. However, if you can justify subcontracting components of the work, you can employ specialist consultants or advisers. This work will still be the responsibility of the main contractor.
Phase 1: Research and development contracts, feasibility study
The first phase involves research and development contracts being awarded to demonstrate technical feasibility of the proposed solution. A total of up to £45,000, including VAT, is allocated to phase 1 of the competition for each challenge.
It is anticipated that the feasibility study research and development (R&D) contracts will be up to £15,000, including VAT. This is for each project for up to three months. Your project must start by 30 November. Innovate UK expect to fund up to three projects for each challenge. The assessors will consider fair value in making their evaluation.
In phase 1, you must:
- Demonstrate the technical feasibility of your proposed innovation
- Establish ongoing collaboration between technical and clinical members of the project team
- Formalise any required ethical approvals, data sharing agreements and contracts
- Begin working with clinical and imaging data
Innovate UK would welcome bids that bring together sector specialists.
Phase 2: Research and development contracts, prototype development and testing
Should phase 2 go ahead, the second phase involves up to two R&D contracts being awarded for each challenge to businesses chosen from the successful phase 1 applicants.
It is anticipated that contracts will be up to £27,500, including VAT, for each project for up to nine months.
In phase 2 you must:
- Develop and evaluate a prototype of your solution
- Test the prototype on real-world data and systems within the named Scottish NHS Health Boards, to establish clinical utility
- Develop a plan for full commercial exploitation
The contract is completed at the end of phase 2, and the successful business is expected to pursue commercialisation of their solution.
NHS Scotland has allocated up to £300,000, including VAT, to fund projects in this competition. There are two phases.
For each challenge, the total funding will be £100,000, including VAT.
Applications must have at least 50% of the contract value attributed directly and exclusively for R&D services. R&D can cover solution exploration and design. It can also include prototyping and field-testing the product or service. This lets you incorporate the results of your exploration and design and demonstrate that you can produce in quantity to acceptable quality standards.
R&D does not include:
- Commercial development activities such as quantity production
- Supply to establish commercial viability or to recover R&D costs
- Integration, customisation or incremental adaptations and improvements to existing products or processes
The total funding available for the competition can change.
The funders have the right to:
- Adjust the provisional funding allocations between the phases and challenges
- Apply a ‘portfolio’ approach
Any adoption and implementation of a solution from this SBRI competition would be the subject of a separate, possible competitive, procurement exercise. This competition covers R&D not the purchase of any solution.
SBRI competitions involve procurement of R&D services at a fair market value and are not subject to state aid criteria that typically apply to grant funding.
Cresco Innovation works with companies to develop and implement innovation strategies. We help client companies identify opportunities to develop new products and services, and then create a package of support to ensure that the idea is turned into a commercial reality.
Our services include securing grants (as a team we have raised around £40million over three years), business planning, IP advice, access to finance and funders, project management and IP commercialisation support.
We regularly act as the interface with the funding bodies and help clients ensure that their projects are properly managed to ensure the best outcome for all.