Strathclyde initiative aims to help Scottish healthcare firms

Strathclyde University has launched a new initiative to help Scottish companies tap into the £170bn global medical technologies market.

Strathclyde Medtech will help businesses and academics work together to bring new healthcare technologies to market – from new imaging and diagnostic equipment, to devices to help older patients manage health problems at home.

The medical technology market is estimated to be worth £150-£170bn worldwide, growing to around £300bn by 2015. But technology firms have stressed that if they are to take advantage of the sector’s potential and create the complex products sought by cost-conscious clinicians and patients, specialist advice and support is required.

Prof Trish Connolly, director of the Strathclyde Institute of Medical Devices, said: ’The medical technologies of the future can only be created through a fusion of engineering, science and medicine. Strathclyde Medtech will provide companies with the support and advice needed to navigate complex regulatory and technical issues. We will be looking to work with both companies already involved in medical device development and those in other sectors, including electronics, textiles, healthcare and even automotive component companies.’

Funding will be available to help firms work with the university through consultancy or research projects, including feasibility studies and testing for technologies in areas including diagnostics, cardiovascular devices, rehabilitation and assisted living, drug delivery, biomaterials and cell/tissue engineering.

The venture has received £376,000 from the Scottish Government’s SEEKIT fund, and nearly £308,000 from the European Regional Development Fund.