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SIGHT Symposium: New Healthcare Tech to Benefit Patients

Over 200 delegates from local health technology companies, clinicians, Government organisations, funding bodies and other sectors attended The Healthtech Acceleration Symposium and Matchmaking 2023 event at Portsmouth Guildhall last month.

Organised by the Supporting Innovation and Growth in Healthcare Technologies (SIGHT) business support programme developed by the University of Portsmouth, the event, powered by global super connectors, Empact Ventures, explored some of the prominent challenges around developing new health technologies.

It provided guests with engagement and networking opportunities for healthtech businesses, enabling them to meet with a tailored audience of clinicians, patient research representatives/patients, academics, business development experts and support organisations.

A variety of topics were discussed in main stage presentations including explorations of the clinical challenges for MSK implants, Surgery 4.0, respiratory, rehab and mental health, with presentations on key themes in the Healthtech innovation journey, such as access to finance and funding, understanding regulatory requirements, health economics and impact assessment, designing a clinical study, business development, as well as providing dedicated spaces for pre-arranged one-to-one meetings.

There were speakers and representatives from organisations such as Portsmouth Hospitals University Trust (PHU), Innovate UK EDGE, University of Portsmouth, National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR), British Standards Institution (BSI), Department for International Trade (DIT), Wessex Academic Health Science Network (WAHSN), Portsmouth Technologies Trials Unit (PTTU) and Barclays Eagle Labs.

Dr Phil Jewell, Director of Healthtech at the University of Portsmouth and SIGHT Programme CEO, said: “We’re extremely happy with how the event has gone. This event provided us with the opportunity to understand some of the challenges faced by clinicians and companies, while at the same time giving guests the chance to speak to people from a wide variety of organisations about possible solutions.

“Having all of these opportunities in one place in one day would take a business a long time to establish these relationships, with the University, the hospital or Local Enterprise Partnership for example, and it’s been a real success to put all of those constituent parts in one place. Some of those relationships that have been formed will mature into new technologies that I hope will reach the NHS in the future.”

Arthur Jealouse, Business Development Manager from BSI, said: “SIGHT is important for providing opportunities for events like this where all  the organisations, who support medical device innovators, can come together and show what support is available and, most importantly, how they can get those devices to market and in the hands of clinicians to benefit patients.”

Robert Kruppa, Director at Menzies, added: “At the small end or start-up phases, the business can’t do everything at once, they can’t know everyone they need to know and events like this and the oversight that SIGHT has pulled all that together. People can come to events like this and make contacts and connections with a varied number of providers and speak to the people they need to speak to.”

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