New digital health hub to drive innovation

Tuesday, 07 June, 2022

New digital health hub to drive innovation

RMIT University, along with industry partners, has launched a new hub to drive digital health innovation to support healthcare transformation and citizen health in Australia and internationally.

Kerryn Butler-Henderson, Director, RMIT Digital Health Hub, said, “The COVID pandemic has resulted in a rapid acceleration of innovations in the health sector, but it is just the beginning. It takes a multi-sectorial approach to co-designing solutions to today’s health and care problems and the Digital Health Hub will play a key role in the development, testing and implementation of new innovations to support citizen health and wellness goals in the home and the community.”

“As a university of technology and enterprise, our industry partnerships will be critical to driving meaningful transformation in digital health innovation through research, training, internship and workforce development,” said Butler-Henderson, who is also Chair of the Global Digital Health Specialist Workforce Census.

Helping to promote a digitally capable healthcare workforce is a key focus of the Hub, she said.

“RMIT is addressing the need for digitally capable graduates by incorporating digital health training across its health programs. Further, it provides short courses and postgraduate training to upskill the existing workforce.

“A workforce upskill strategy is embedded into our model to support the health sector with both the training of health and care professionals and the development of a specialist digital health workforce,” she said.

The Digital Health Hub, launched in partnership with AND Health and Digital Health CRC, is already committed to supporting a range of international digital health programs, including the Digital Health Program for people with lower limb amputation, physical disability and associated mental health concerns in developing countries, which was launched in Indonesia in May.

The program, which will also be delivered in Cambodia and Timor-Leste, aims to build sustainability and the capacity of in-country providers to improve people’s mobility and quality of life. It will be delivered through online digital learning platforms based at RMIT and face-to-face training.

The Hub is also supporting the Improving digital empowerment for active healthy living (IDEAHL) project, which also launched earlier this month, funded by the European Union’s Horizon Europe program and coordinated by the Regional Ministry of Health of Asturias.

RMIT Europe is one of 14 partners involved in the €2.7 million IDEAHL research project, which will create a digital health literacy strategy and transform how everyday citizens manage their health care. Other programs supported by the RMIT Digital Health Hub include: a project to bring clinical decision support software that predicts deteriorating health into aged care settings; and the Sleeptite, RMIT and Sleepeezee Bedding Australia collaborative project, which has seen sensor technology embedded in bedding material to help detect and prevent night-time falls in aged care settings and provides data and insights on the users’ state of health and sleep patterns.

The RMIT Digital Health Hub will also host the Melbourne Digital Health Ecosystem of the European Connected Health Alliance Group (ECHAlliance Group) to support initiatives and connections between policymakers, healthcare providers, researchers, technology disruptors and the community sector to drive sustainable change and disruption in the delivery of health care.

Image credit: © silver

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