SEHTA adopts new business model to ensure support for medtech sector
5 January 2012
The South East Health Technologies Alliance (SEHTA), which
helps medical technology companies in SE England to establish and grow,
is to adopt a new business model to continue to assist its existing
members, new members and other organisations.
Against a backdrop of unparalleled upheaval in the global economy
as well as mounting pressures on the UK medical sector from budget
cuts, SEHTA has broadened its remit and has also set up a commercial
arm called SEHTA Enterprises.
SEHTA’s re-focused mission is to “support the sustainable growth
of innovative companies and service providers in health and social
care and the health technologies sector, including biotechnology,
diagnostics, medical device, pharmaceuticals and telecare/telehealth”.
“Times have changed and the publicly funded business support
sector is under extreme pressure on several fronts,” says Dr David
Parry, CEO of SEHTA. “The NHS, as well all know, faces severe
financial constraints, yet at the same time demand for the improved
care of patients has never been higher.
“It is extremely important for innovative UK businesses in the
healthcare sector to continue to receive support so they can
develop, build and deliver products and services to make healthcare
delivery more efficient and cost-effective. These companies need
help that is both independent and impartial, which is what SEHTA
provides to its members.”
Until 2011, SEHTA was partly funded by the South East England
Development Agency (SEEDA) that faces closure by the 31st of March
2012 as a result of the coalition Government’s spending cuts.
“The funding provided by SEEDA has been important to us, but it
hasn’t been the only form of income to support SEHTA and our
members,” explains Dr Parry. “We continue to manage several other
public and private sector contracts and are bidding for several
more, both in the UK and EU.
“We are also developing strategic partnerships with organisations
similar to ourselves — those who will be providing support and
services to SMEs, universities and the health sector.”
SEHTA has also created a wholly-owned subsidiary, called SEHTA
Enterprises, to focus on commercial opportunities. “We will be
launching our new membership package early in the 2012, one that’s
designed to help our members save money, make the right contacts and
help their businesses grow,” says Dr Parry. “We will also be
announcing a new programme of events for members and other
stakeholders in the healthcare sector, including a series on
‘Accessing the NHS’.”
Since its inception, SEHTA has developed a strong track record in
business support, networking and developing projects in response to
healthcare sector needs. The creation of the International Centre of
Excellence in Telecare (ICE-T) is one such example, where SEHTA
managed to support over £1 million of market-led collaborative
projects and created a thriving network of over 1,500 contacts.
This year, SEHTA also managed the most successful innovation
voucher project in Europe — it was five times over-subscribed and
introduced around 50 companies to universities to access expertise
and equipment. “Several of these introductions have resulted in more
grants and new and mutually beneficial partnerships,” adds Dr Parry.
“Our understanding and contacts within the health service are
growing all the time. There is recognition that the NHS really does
need industry to provide innovative cost-effective solutions to its
challenges and we have been responsible for working with our
Strategic Health Authorities, now the Southern Cluster, to bring
SBRI projects for SMEs to our local companies. These contracts from
the SHA are designed to help industry solve NHS problems.”
To find out more about SEHTA, please visit: