Eastern AHSN and Health Enterprise East (HEE) hosted a Clinical Entrepreneurs Forum in Cambridge last week (31 March 2017). The first of what is hoped to be a regular event, the forum provided a fantastic opportunity to hear first-hand from entrepreneurs, innovators, and Clinical Fellows, providing valuable and practical advice, insight and experiences into their own innovation success and the support on offer. The day also provided plenty of scope for networking with likeminded colleagues who share an interest in entrepreneurship and innovation.
Focused on overcoming some of the barriers to innovation in healthcare, presentations from Dr David Brooks, CEO Ablatus Therapeutics Ltd and Dr Vincent Gnanapragasam a Consultant Urological Surgeon at Addenbrookes Hospital provided stimulating and dynamic content from a ‘real life’ perspective. Insight into the resources that currently exist for financial and business support was high on the agenda with talks from Dr John Pritchard, Entrepreneur in Residence for Cambridge University and Maryanne Mariyaselvam, Clinical Entrepreneur and NIA Fellow at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Kings Lynn.
Delegates also heard from the team at the Medtech Accelerator, a new joint venture to help facilitate the early stage development of innovations in the broad area of medical technology that meet unmet clinical needs within the NHS. With a total of £1.5 million available, it was not a surprise to see the interest from delegates on how they could access the individual awards of up to £125,000 for innovation projects that show the potential to create future spin-out companies.
Chairing the agenda, Dr Steve Feast, Managing Director of Eastern AHSN commented:
“This event has been a great opportunity to connect already successful innovators in the eastern region with aspiring entrepreneurs in the healthcare profession. It arose from a need to deve;lpp a local network to support likeminded clinical entrepreneurs to come together to draw on one another’s experiences of the challenges and opportunities of innovation. It is our hope that through improved networking we can create communities of visionaries who will then be well placed to tackle the healthcare innovation challenges that we face in the region. I am delighted with the great feedback received and we look forward to working with HEE and our regional colleagues to host similar events in the future.”