£15m investment in health innovation
The latest phase of Welsh Government investment in health technology has been announced from a £25 million fund.
Bids have been approved on 21 projects totalling over £15 million from the Health Technology Fund. The bids include developments in maternity, cancer, cardiac, mental health, diagnostics and unscheduled care.
Landmark projects include:
· A first robotic surgery system for Wales capable of minimally invasive treatment of prostate cancer at Cardiff and Vale University Health Board (£2.15m);
· £0.56m for state of the art radiotherapy planning and high dose rate brachytherapy equipment to deliver the latest cancer treatment methods at Velindre Trust;
· Automated equipment for identification of bacteria with near trebling of productivity, increased quality and more rapid diagnosis for the Public Health Wales microbiology service at Glan Clwyd Hospital (£1.19m);
· Replacement of more expensive and invasive colonoscopy with a dedicated £1.93m CT scanner for the colon cancer service at Betsi Cadwaladr UHB;
· £0.32m for new technologies to promote mental health and well being at Aneurin Bevan Health Board;
· Computerised heart rate analysis of low birth weight babies to prevent deaths and harm at the neonatal unit at Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board (£0.39m).
· £5 million was allocated to projects in 2012-13, and the remaining £5 million will be used to support increased use of technology to enhance services in community settings.
Health Minister Mark Drakeford said:
"Investment in innovation is essential if we are to achieve our aim of safe, sustainable and high quality health services for Wales.
"Technology has a major role to play in the future of the NHS and provides the tools needed by dedicated NHS staff. From the perspective of patients, new technology can improve service quality, improve outcomes and reduce the need for care in hospital.
"New technologies are supporting advances in healthcare so the people of Wales can receive the best possible treatment available.”