We took the opportunity to explore key issues such as the need for close links between the NHS and industry, the importance of digital health, the focus on climate change and how the region is supporting businesses in the health and care sectors.
Dr. Nicola Hutchinson, CEO of AHSN NENC, said, “The North East region is committed to growing the life sciences business and is becoming one of the best places in the world to do business. In particular, our aspiration is to position the region as a leader in the development, evaluation, manufacturing and adoption of patient-centered treatments, therapeutics and diagnostics.
The North East region is recognized as having the largest healthcare inequalities of any region in England, which have been further exacerbated by the pandemic. As a region, we work collaboratively to reduce these disparities and raise the profile of the region by promoting our unique strengths, our cohesive partnerships, and leveraging strategic relationships to drive innovations to improve the health of people and support the economy. »
The event was chaired by Alix Mackay of the Life Sciences Marketing Academy. There were two keynotes. The first was from Sam Allen, who set out his vision for creating a collaborative health and care sector and wanting the North East and North Cumbria to be where people around the world come see how we are transforming health care. While the other was by Steve Bagshaw, who reflected on the tremendous accomplishments, accelerating science, and working together throughout the COVID pandemic, and as we move closer to vision 2030.
The first round table chaired by Ammar Mirza CBE included Dr Nicola Hutchinson from AHSN NENC, Justyna Mysliwy from Iksuda, Arun Harish from CPI, Becky Crow from Newcastle Gateshead Initiative and Sam Allen from ICB. The panel reflected on how far the North East has come and the health and care opportunities that lie ahead. The importance of skills and partnerships in the region was highlighted.
In the second session on digital health, Dave Belshaw and Dr. Sean Gill focused on the role of digital and health and life sciences and reshaping patient journeys, looking at the different stages of patient care. healthcare through the Innovation Pathway, AHSN NENC’s vehicle for articulating the bespoke services that can be delivered to NHS organizations and industry. Dr. Sean Gill provided an overview of real-world assessment and its importance. The challenges facing health and care services are well documented. Innovation is essential to meet them.
We need to explore new ways of working based on basic needs and priorities. More of the same is not an option. We must encourage innovation. However, innovation must also be evaluated. Without evaluative evidence, all we have are defenders and champions. Without proof, we don’t know whether the innovation should be developed and disseminated. Too often, innovation happens without the support and discipline of evaluation. Sean has worked to develop an AHSN NENC Assessment Toolkit to guide innovators through the process of planning an assessment.
The Digital Processes and Manufacturing roundtable focused on digital processes when scaling and manufacturing and digital diagnostics and included David Berry from CPI, Adeel Aslam from Bouygues E&S, Tim Hargreaves of Marks and Clerk and Mark Corbett of the National Horizons Centre.
The roundtable on creating the greenest region in the UK by 2030 looked at the environmental impacts of life science companies and what needs to be done to continue to grow the sector and, ultimately, saving the planet.
The final session was a Science Innovation Showcase that demonstrated innovation in the North East and provided a platform for some of the region’s SMEs, prioritizing key themes and areas of expertise identified by the event. There were presentations from Beetroot Health, Aelius Biotech, Rapid Fluidics, Magnitude Biosciences and AMLo Biosciences.
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