Imperial/DigitalStitch Dragon’s Den for Healthcare Apps

The winners of a competition for academic and NHS staff will receive help to develop their ideas for smartphone apps to improve healthcare. Clinicians and researchers from Imperial were invited to submit a 250-word design brief for an app that would transform how health services are delivered and how medical staff communicate with patients.

Two entries, an app that helps patients strengthen their lungs before undergoing surgery and another to help doctors share clinical images, were chosen as joint winners by the judges. The competition was organised in partnership between Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, Imperial College London and DigitalStitch, a spin-out company from Imperial College London specialising in developing mobile technologies for healthcare.

The judging panel included Professor Lord Ara Darzi, Director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College London and co-founder of DigitalStitch; Kevin Jarrold, chief information officer at the Trust; and Tim Kelsey, director for patients and information at NHS England. Peter Hames, CEO of Sleepio, an app which uses cognitive behavioural therapy to help people with anxiety and insomnia to sleep, was also on the panel providing industry experience. Tim Bunting, a partner in the venture capitalist firm Balderton Capital, examined the ideas from a funding perspective.

The creator of the winning applications will receive support and expertise worth £15,000 to design, develop and market their innovation. DigitalStitch will help the winner to bring their idea to market.

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