News story

Live longer, better, healthier: new innovation funding

£300 million from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund will support our ageing population, with opportunities for businesses and researchers to work together.

Nurse showing patient health data on tablet.
Nurse showing patient health data on tablet.

There will be new opportunities for UK businesses and researchers to apply for funding to develop new products and services that support people living more healthy, active lives as they get older.

This is government’s announcement that it will invest £300 million to meet the needs of an ageing society - one of its 4 grand challenges to get funding under the Industrial Strategy Fund, part of government’s Industrial Strategy.

It will draw on the expertise of the UK research base and leading industry to innovate and keep people fit, well and active for longer.

Support people as they age

The UK is getting older as a country. One in 12 people today are over 75-years-old. By 2040, it’s thought this will be around one in 7. We’re also living for longer. A third of children born this year are expected to live to be 100.

Up to 98 million will be invested in research and innovation that supports people as they age and their carers’.

This challenge will get businesses working on ideas that allow people to live better and independently for longer, building on the research that comes out of academic institutions, research and technology organisations and hospitals.

It’s an opportunity to revolutionise the way we age, with products and services that give everyone the best chance to continue to be active and independent.

ISCF Wave 2 Healthy Ageing

Identify problems to treat them earlier

Identifying diseases and conditions early is usually the best way to contain them later on. They can be mitigated, managed and made to have a less serious impact on a patient’s quality of life.

Once diagnosed, it’s important that a patient gets the right treatment. Through an improved understanding of a disease and its characteristics, it means that the best treatment for the individual can be selected first time.

The £210 million being invested in this challenge support the early diagnosis of patients and the development of precision medicine to treat them.

The research sector will look at improve how we use the health data we have in the UK to better identify diseases, even before clinical symptoms emerge. This includes sequencing the genomes of 500,000 Biobank volunteers to create a data-rich resource and improve understanding.

Using the data available, businesses will be called on to develop innovative new diagnostic tools, medical products and therapies that support the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease and improve patient care.

ISCF Wave 2 - from data to early diagnosis and precision medicine

Find out about funding

The funding programme for the challenge will run in 2018 and 2019. There will be various funding opportunities for businesses to apply into over the 2 years.

It will be made available through UK Research and Innovation, which becomes an official organisation on 1 April 2018, bringing together the 7 research councils, Innovate UK and Research England.

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Published 12 March 2018