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Health Innovation Week Attracting Technologies and Investment
Earlier this month, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term care announced grant support for 15 innovative healthcare projects aimed at improving patient care, both in the home and in the community. The grants will come from Ontario’s Health Technologies Fund (HTF), which provides funding for “Ontario-based health technologies that improve care for people, bring value to the health care system and create jobs.”

According to Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, “The Health Technologies Fund is helping to develop exciting new tools that will improve the flow of health information and allow patients to receive high-quality care in their own homes and communities.”

The HTF is a $20-million fund managed by the Ontario Centres of Excellence and the Office of the Chief Health Innovation Strategist (OCHIS). Overall, 15 grants, ranging from $95,000 to $500,000 were awarded, with the total amount equaling $5.4 million.

About the Projects

One of the projects that will receive funding involves a new mobile device that continuously monitors patient vital signs in the hospital and once they’re at home. This device is specifically designed for patients that have recently undergone cardiac and/or vascular surgery, and aims to prevent post-surgery complications and reduce likelihood of hospital readmission.

Another project centers around a new software that gives breast cancer patients easy access to information on upcoming tests, appointments, and treatment recommendations. The software also simplifies patients’ transition to follow-up care by connecting family doctors with cancer specialists.

Additional funding will be set aside for software designed to assist youth with mental health challenges with self-care. This software will provide a platform that supports “education, collaboration, engagement, intervention and goal-focused coaching.”

According to Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science, “Technology is transforming our province, and that includes our health care system. The Health Technologies Fund recipients and the Innovation Brokers are helping to foster a culture of health innovation across Ontario. Together, these initiatives will create jobs within the province’s knowledge economy, while also improving patient outcomes for all Ontarians.”

Attracting Investors

In addition to this exciting news regarding increased government funding of these healthcare initiatives, the second annual RESI (Redefining Early Stage Investments) Conference, Health Innovation Week’s flagship event, recently attracted more than 200 international investors to Toronto.

Health Innovation Week takes place in Toronto every year. The RESI conference is hosted in partnership with Life Science Nation (LSN) and JLABS. It includes 16 panels with investors from biotech and device, diagnostic, and healthcare IT. This year’s conference took place from April 3rd through 7th.

According to Dennis Ford, creator of the RESI Conference Series and CEO at Life Science Nation (LSN), “Toronto’s life sciences sector is experiencing incredibly momentum, and investors are eager to capitalize on that. The first RESI on MaRS was a phenomenal success, drawing US-based investors to Toronto, many for the first time, resulting in numerous valuable startup introductions.”

In 2016, MaRS reported that the RESI conference “resulted in more than 875 meetings between emerging Canadian tech companies and potential investors and partners.” While the impact of this year’s conference is still being evaluated, “We expect this year’s event will exceed the strong benchmark that was established last year,” said Mr. Ford.

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Posted by: DSR
Monday, May 1, 2017
Tag: Healthcare
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