Digital health: Innovation Challenge winners announced

Friday, 26 June, 2020

Digital health: Innovation Challenge winners announced

Winners of the Innovation Challenge — which champions digital health innovation to provide a healthier future for Australians through connected health care — have been announced by the Australian Digital Health Agency.

Via the National Digital Health Strategy, government is partnering with the nation’s vibrant health technology sector at a time when the use of technology in health and social care has never been more important.

“We were delighted to see such interest in this challenge when we received 395 applications from Australian industry and academia on how to solve key healthcare challenges,” Australian Digital Health Agency Chief Digital Officer Steven Issa said.

“It was difficult to determine the finalists with so many highly innovative ideas. Thank you to all who submitted applications and congratulations to the winners.

“It’s great to see so many working hard to develop innovative solutions to help ensure a sustainable and fair healthcare system.”

The winners

Murdoch Children’s Research Institute for its solution, Allergy Pal, a digital management platform for children with a moderate-to-severe food allergy seeking to build a national database of patients with food allergies and facilitate greater continuity of care and improved patient health outcomes.

CareMonitor for its digital Shared Care and Remote Monitoring Platform designed to provide Australians with a seamless transition of services across the health system and management of patients diagnosed with COVID-19 or other chronic health issues in record time.

Oculo for its solution to link mobile technologies for the remote capture of objective measures of visual function to inform telehealth decisions and care pathways for eye care.

Fred IT Group for its solution enabling Australians to easily access their prescriptions electronically through WhatsApp.

Pen CS for its solution, Disease Tracker, a primary care clinical data and analytics platform that improves epidemic surveillance, emergency response and clinical outcomes through point-of-care decision support.

The Agency will now collaborate closely with the successful applicants to assist them to co-design their solution and assist with plans for national scaling.

“As restrictions are eased and Australians come out of hibernation, we want them to access health and care services — especially if they have been putting their health on hold over the past few months,” Issa said.

“I want to reassure the community that they can access healthcare services safely — whether that be through social distancing in healthcare settings or through the new technology that has taken off this year.

“The winners of our challenge are providing amazing digital tools to improve the quality of healthcare services — by improving the quality of telehealth consultations, providing an app for consumers to store their digital prescriptions and making it easier for people to manage their allergies.

“We are also increasing the capacity of the health system by better using the data we have to assist health services plan for and respond to the needs of the community,” he said.

“We will continue to work with innovators, academia, peak bodies, employers and health industry stakeholders to make sure healthcare workers have the necessary skills to embrace digital technology. This can be done in health care through the National Digital Health Workforce and Education Roadmap.”

The winners of the Innovation Challenge were determined through a competitive process along three themes: digital clinical care; digital social care; and digital health population management and future preparedness. All applications were reviewed by a panel of digital health subject matter experts within the Agency. Shortlisted applications were then scored by a panel of experts in the technology, health and social services, and investors across the private sector, government and academia.

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