New partnership provides needed support
“It will help our members to understand what’s available today and what’s coming up on the horizon so that they are not sold equipment which has reached its sell-by-date.”
Local authorities, housing associations, charities and the NHS can take advantage of a new partnership which provides expertise and support in telecare, telehealth and assistive technology services.
Coventry University Health Design & Technology Institute (HDTI) has formed a partnership with the membership-based Centre for Usable Home Technology (CUHTec) which discusses and shares knowledge and experience in the use of innovative health and social care devices and systems to help people live independently and enjoy an improved quality of life.
CUHTec focuses on using smart connected systems to monitor the well-being, safety and security of people in their homes, and provides information on life-enhancing assistive technology for people with disabilities and long-term health conditions. This leads naturally to the organisation and delivery of industry-leading courses and forums for members.
Dr Kevin Doughty, director of CUHTec which was formed at the University of York in 2003, said the new partnership would lead to greater collaboration in trying, testing, improving and promoting new products, and would also support funding applications for research and development.
He said: “HDTI works with businesses, entrepreneurs and inventors, helping them develop better products and services.
“This collaboration will enable us to offer a complete service for our members, supporting them through the innovation process, from early stage concept design to manufacturing and selling.
“It will help our members to understand what’s available today and what’s coming up on the horizon so that they are not sold equipment which has reached its sell-by-date.
“We run specialist courses in Coventry and London looking, for example, at the role of technology in caring for people with dementia, or the importance of identifying and securing intellectual property rights. Other venues for courses will be added in the future.
“This partnership with HDTI will extend the range of membership services and high quality training opportunities that we are able to provide.
“Membership of CUHTec is free for small companies and individuals as well as for commissioning groups for telecare services including local authorities, housing associations, charities and the NHS, who might have an interest in services that lead to better or more meaningful outcomes.”
Guy Smallman, commercial development director at HDTI, said the new collaboration would strengthen new and existing opportunities for both organisations.
“This will raise the profile of the importance of new product innovation to assist people in living more independent lives,” he said.
“We are producing a regular newsletter and a new website for CUHTec as well as launching free regional telecare forums for members to discuss recent advances and new ideas in assistive technology, telecare and telehealth.
“Awareness building is vital in encouraging the development of assisted living products to empower people to enjoy more independent lifestyles, irrespective of their age and location; this collaboration between HDTI and CUHTec will hopefully achieve that.”
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