Ten research teams received a Pioneers in Health Care (PIHC) voucher of 70,000 euros to work on technology for better patient care. The teams consist of at least one researcher of the University of Twente or the Saxion University of Applied Sciences and one care professional of Medisch Spectrum Twente (MST), ZiekenhuisGroep Twente (ZHG) or Deventer Hospital. The award ceremony took place on 11 December at the Saxion University of Applied Sciences in Enschede.
In total, 32 participants submitted a proposal to the innovation fund which granted the vouchers for the fifth year. The ten winning proposals develop technology that benefits patients with asthma, tobacco addiction, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, lung cancer and lymphoma. The money from the PIHC fund (total of 700,000 euros) was made available by the UT, Saxion, MST, ZGT, Deventer Hospital and health care insurer Menzis.
When awarding the vouchers, a distinction was made for the first time between 'technological pioneering in health care' and 'applying technology in health care'. The first category concerns research that still needs to be further developed before the technology can be used in a clinical environment. In the second category, it concerns a new clinical application for a proven technology already demonstrated its ability.
The PIHC fund has granted 48 vouchers over the last five years. According to project manager Jojanneke Schuiling-Jukes, the research grants have proven their value. 'One of the objectives is to promote collaboration between researchers and hospitals. We notice that it is becoming increasingly easier to find each other. Independent of the project proposals, more joint studies have been initiated. Researchers indicate that this cooperation would not exist without the vouchers. Also, the vouchers have helped them in their successful application for national and European grants for follow-up research.'