UK & Ireland firms receive 40,000 from EIT Health Headstart programme – Med-Tech Innovation

A total of 16 start-ups from across the UK and Ireland have each been awarded 40,000 and will have access to mentoring and business support through the EIT Health Headstart programme.

Each of the teams will get the opportunity to boost their winnings by 10,000 at a pitching competition later this year.

The hearings process for the UK and Ireland saw 24 teams pitch over three days. The 16 selected teams represent innovative solutions in; medtech, biotech and digital health, as well as three teams who have solutions relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. The eight runners-up were awarded vouchers for mentorship and coaching through EIT Healths mentoring and coaching network.

Across the EU, 89 teams were selected for the programme, which provides emerging companies with mentorship and funding opportunities to accelerate the development and time-to-market of innovative products and services to improve the lives of Europeancitizens.Mentored by EIT Healths regional teams of Business Creation Managers, the programme offers support to the companies as they navigate the steps required to bring their solution to market including, crucially, verification of the clinical, patient or system need for the product or service. They are also supported with skills development and contacts so that they can go on to attract further financial support from private investors.

Addressing a number of significant health challenges facing Europeans today, the start-ups will develop products and services in areas such as cancer, geriatrics, ophthalmology, wound care, womens health, genetic and neurological conditions, cardiology and digital tools to assist healthcare services in the management of patients as well as research and development. New for this year, EIT Health expanded the scope of Headstart to assist in the immediate need for solutions to combat COVID-19, and has selected 21 start-ups that will develop products and services that will help Europe to contain, treat and manage the disease.

Dr. Kurt Hller, director of business creation at EIT Health, said: We are thrilled to support the 88 start-ups selected this year through the Headstart programme. Each one presented an incredibly strong proposition for the development of solutions to improve the lives of European patients and citizens in areas of high unmet need. I am also proud to see the speed at which our applicants were able to respond to our call for COVID-19 solutions - it is truly a demonstration of the agility and astuteness that lies within the start-up community we have here in Europe.

The winning teams from the UK and Ireland:

AquAffirm Limited(UK): develops a web-based tool employing models for analysing both epidemic trajectory and restriction management of COVID-19. The solution will allow even small businesses and developing countries to access advanced prediction models.

BioXplor, LTD.(Ireland): launches an open-access COVID-19 research and development platform for rapid literature-based knowledge discovery and AI/data-driven drug discovery solutions. The secure, federated and fully interoperable platform will combine public and private data.

UPSTREAM OUTCOMES LIMITED(UK): employs AI combined with mobile and analytics platform to provide technologies and service approaches that support an upstream approach, encouraging better preventive care.

BeneTalk LTD(UK):introduces an AI-e wearable speech tracker. This is AI-enhanced speech therapist tracks the users speech patterns throughout the day and provides real-time feedback to help the user transform their communication.

CrannMed Limited(Ireland): aims to eliminate chronic pain, restore mobility and stop disease progression for patients with Knee Osteoarthritis. Their solution provides an alternative treatment for this debilitating disease through development of bioresorbable embolic particles and a flow directed delivery mechanism (balloon occlusion microcatheter).

Hygiene Audits Ltd(Ireland): offers a software solution for infection prevention and control in nursing homes by providing automated workflows for care staff, tracking and tracing infection risks, and helping reduce healthcare-associated infections.

KroniKare Limited(UK): KroniKare: uses a hand-held device and an AI-based system for assessment and management of chronic wounds. The evidence-based solution automates the process of wound assessment and management.

Latch Medical Ltd.(Ireland): eases catheter use through the development of Cath Latch, a patented microneedle technology that allows robust, adhesive-free and non-invasive catheter securement to the skin. The solution allows the device to stay in situ for extended periods of time with a low risk of complications.

neoMimix(Ireland): allows for natural sperm selection for assisted human reproduction. The solution provides a natural, ex vivo, biomimicry of the female reproductive tract for sorting and selecting the highest grade, lowest DNA fragmented sperm in a simple and fully traceable process.

Novus Diagnostics LTD(Ireland): develops SepTec, a sepsis detection device that is making significant strides towards addressing the vital need for rapid, accurate sepsis diagnosis. SepTecs sample-to-answer diagnostic device detects bacteraemia in whole blood in under 15 minutes.

NUA Surgical(Ireland): develops a specialised surgical retractor to make C-Sections a safer and superior surgery. SteriCISION will improve ergonomics of the surgery, reduce resources required and reduce the risk of surgical site infection.

Praxis Medical Devices Ltd(Ireland): develops CapBuster, a medical device to penetrate completely blocked arteries. The solution incorporates engineering intelligence at a nano level that has never been used before in angioplasty. It comprises a guidewire and balloon catheter combination device, with the addition of unique patented screw-thread technology.

Sision Medical(Ireland): uses the latest advances in bioengineering and artificial intelligence to result in a new treatment approach for chronic inflammatory endocrine condition. Sision Medical's platform offers a personalised treatment using a wearable medical device that delivers targeted electrical pulses to normalise the body's own biological actions.

uFraction8 Ltd(UK): develops microfluidics-based filtration systems that help bio-manufacturers who use biological cells in their production to harvest cells with a sustainable and scalable system that outperforms conventional filters and centrifuges.

VineHealth Digital Limited(UK): allows cancer patients to better track, manage and understand their care with an app. The solution applies machine learning and behavioural science to drive behavioural change. It aims to improve quality of life, promote optimised care delivery and increased survival, and gather patient data that informs more patient-focussed healthcare and academic research.

waytoB(Ireland): offers a smart tech solution that enables people with special educational needs (SEN) to navigate outdoor environments safely by themselves. The solution provides intuitive, icon-based directions on their device.

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UK & Ireland firms receive 40,000 from EIT Health Headstart programme - Med-Tech Innovation

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