Health Innovation at Lancaster
The Health Innovation Campus is an international centre focused on tackling the biggest challenge in healthcare today – helping people to live as long and as healthily as possible.
Whereas many other universities and research centres are dedicated to finding new cures for diseases, the HIC will concentrate on how to prevent people getting sick in the first place. It will save money as well as lives by creating new products, processes and services and thereby reduce patient demand for treatments.
At the centre of the HIC philosophy is a commitment to work collaboratively with businesses and the health sector to co-design, develop and evaluate new ideas. It will also have a focus on personal and organisational development to ensure there is capacity and capability to promote, embed and implement innovation.
The HIC will drive business innovation, specifically creating new jobs by supporting 300 Lancashire-based small and medium enterprises to develop new and innovative digital and technological solutions and will have wider impact by engaging regionally, nationally and internationally with hundreds of companies. It will place particular emphasis on innovations targeted at the broader determinants of health, the prevention and early diagnosis of illness, and access to care. Alongside the focus on digital innovation, this will include the design, development and evaluation of healthy places to live and work, improving quality and value in health innovation systems, and the development of new materials to improve health.
It will work by co-locating academics from a broad range of different backgrounds in a new building alongside businesses and other partners. This means the HIC will bring in a whole series of disciplines that aren’t normally associated with health, for example management, computing, science, design and linguistics. It will build on Lancaster University’s experience of working with external partners by establishing deep links with local communities and drawing in contributions from around the world. HIC will also provide a new home for the University’s expanding work in in health and medicine.
The HIC will provide an important return on the investment of European Regional Development and Growth Deal Funds through the Government and Lancashire Enterprise Partnership. The collaborations with SMEs have already begun and the first phase of the building is due to open in 2019 and a second phase, which will introduce more laboratory-based work, is currently being scoped out.