A regional collaboration between health, industry, and academia

Do you have an idea that could make a positive impact to the health and care sectors in Wales?  Or have you found a clever way to improve a process or service that could make a positive difference to the health, wealth, or wellbeing of people in Wales?

Are you stuck not knowing what to do with your idea?

If yes, submit your idea for the chance to pitch, demonstrate or present your idea to a panel of NHS, industry, and academic leaders that can support the development of your idea.

Submit idea online
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What is the ARCH Innovation Forum?

The ARCH Innovation Forum is a regional collaboration between Hywel Dda University Health Board, Swansea Bay University Health Board, Swansea University, and the Healthcare Technology Centre.

It is a virtual platform that connects innovators to medical, academic, and industry experts, and aims to accelerate innovation across the health and care sectors in South West Wales.

Successful applicants are invited to a 20-minute panel session where you may pitch, present, or demonstrate your ideas to a multi-disciplinary panel of experts from NHS, industry, and academia - followed by a discussion and Q&A. Think ‘Dragon’s Den’ but without the Dragons. The Forum is a ‘safe place’ to foster innovative thinking and stretch boundaries, and all feedback is constructive and provided in the true spirit of regional collaboration.

Timeslots are 20 minutes in total – 10 minutes to pitch/ present, and 10 minutes Q&A.

Each presenter will receive bespoke, written feedback that includes advice and guidance on how to improve or develop the innovation, highlighting any potential considerations of implementation, route to market, and signposting to funding or support mechanisms or collaborators.

Submissions are open to all and encouraged from NHS, industry, and academia, either as an individual or as a team.

Who is on the panel?

The ARCH Innovation Forum is chaired on a rota basis by:

  • Professor Keith Lloyd - Executive Dean PVC, Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Science at Swansea University
  • Dr Richard Evans - Executive Medical Director at Swansea Bay University Health Board
  • Dr Phil Kloer - Executive Medical Director at Hywel Dda University Health Board
  • Dr Leighton Phillips - Deputy Director of Research, Innovation, and University Partnerships at Hywel Dda University Health Board.

Additional senior colleagues from the health boards and the university will be invited to panel sessions within their respected areas of expertise and interests. Panel sessions are coordinated by the Healthcare Technology Centre with the view of supporting innovations via the Accelerate programme, where possible.

Previous panel members have joined from Welsh Government, Assistive Technologies Innovation Centre (UWTSD), Life Sciences Hub Wales, Digital Health Ecosystem Wales, and AWEN Institute of Swansea University.

Criteria for applicants

Your application must meet the essential criteria:

  1. Based in Wales
  2. Must meet a healthcare need
  3. Be from academia, industry, or NHS background.

In addition, these are desirable criteria for your application to have:

  1. Think different – be creative
  2. Be within the South West Wales region
  3. Tell us what you want to achieve from your session.

How to apply:

Complete and submit the online entry form OR download application form and return by email to htc.accelerate@swansea.ac.uk.

The pre-selection panel will meet every month and will consider all eligible submissions. Decisions will be announced thereafter, and all successful submissions will be notified of their invitation to present.

Successful submissions will be contacted and offered support leading up to, during, and after their panel session. Unsuccessful applicants will be notified and offered the chance to meet with the Healthcare Technology Centre and Accelerate partners to discuss a potential R&D collaboration, if appropriate.

If you are invited to join a panel session it is up to you how you wish to present, pitch, or demonstrate your idea – but remember, you only have 20 minutes in total. If you overrun your presentation, you WILL have less time to gain important advice from the panel. We will help prepare you in advance if needed.

We aim to run four panel sessions in 2022 with a schedule of:

  • March
  • May
  • July
  • September

The submission process is quick and easy, and presenters may discuss as much or as little as they wish. However, non-disclosure agreements have been signed in advance on behalf of each institution to allow presenters to discuss their innovation in confidence.

If you have an idea that could improve the health and care sector in Wales, tell us about it and let us open the door for you.