The new National Institute for Health Research Invention for Innovation (i4i) programme was launched on 25th October 2010 and now consists of two funding streams – for early and late stage product development – to simplify the application process. The new i4i programme aspires to advance the translation of healthcare technologies for increased patient benefit through guided progression of innovative medical technologies.
i4i Early-stage product development awards
1-3 year investigation involving collaboration between industry, academic or clinical researchers to carry out feasibility or pilot studies to support the further development of an innovative new technology or intervention to address an existing or emerging healthcare need. The study must be informed by evidence already obtained through prior basic research investigations. Through robust R&D, prototype products should emerge. The barriers to commercial implementation need to be identified and these should inform the development of a credible business plan and appropriate management team.
i4i Late-stage product development awards
A detailed investigation of 1-3 years involving collaboration between industry, academic or clinical researchers that builds on the results of a completed assessment of the feasibility or pilot study. This will provide further evidence of the capability to deliver improved healthcare outcomes and commercial opportunity, delivering an advanced prototype along with plans for commercial and intellectual property exploitation. The barriers to commercial implementation need to be identified and these should inform the development of a credible business plan and appropriate management team.
Both streams are now open for applications. Key points include:
- Individual awards are for a period of 1-3 years. The amount of funding awarded is determined by the scale and nature of the research activity to be conducted. Applicants should cost their projects to the appropriate amount.
- Funding can be awarded to an NHS organisation, Academic or Higher Education Institution or industry. Small early stage companies are particularly welcome.
- Assessment criteria include: relevance to the NHS, strength of the research and management teams, strength of business plan, evidence of potential patient benefit, health economic case and quality of proposal.
The deadline for outline proposals is: 22nd November 2010, 5:00pm.
The National Institute for Health Research page where more information can be found (and from which this summary was produced) is at http://www.nihr-ccf.org.uk/site/programmes/i4i/default.cfm.