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One point of Entry eases way to Danish testbeds

One Point of Entry strengthens the infrastructure between companies and the public sector at a national level. Companies now have one common entry when applying for medical testbed facilities.

The Capital Region of Denmark has, together with Denmark’s other four regions, a vision to create the best possible test bed environment for companies that research in and develop medical and pharmacy solutions.

“We have two goals with One Point of Entry. First, we wish to strengthen cooperation between the industry and the public sector and thereby contributing to the promotion of trade and profiling of the Danish research community. Secondly, we want to give Danish patients access to the best welfare technologies and the best medicine. The sooner, the better,” says Jane Tidemand, consultant in the Capital Region of Denmark.

With One Point of Entry, companies no longer need to spend time navigating in the Danish healthcare system to find suitable test bed environments. They need only turn to one person, and all inquiries are handled professionally.

“One Point of Entry was only launched a couple of years ago, but we already find that the structure and coordination around companies’ inquiries and their way from idea to test runs far more smoothly than before,” says Jane Tidemand.

A solid bridge

One Point of Entry considers companies of all sizes as well as students and builds a solid bridge between the private and public sector.

“We are first and foremost a business partner for applicants. In each region, there is one single hub – a consultant, with both commercial and healthcare skills. In collaboration with the hospitals the consultant collects inquiries, analyzes them and matches them with relevant health partners,” explains Jane Tidemand.

The ideas which the hospitals consider have potential to create better solutions for the patients get a chance to unfold through sparring and counseling with professional clinicians.

The Capital Region of Denmark is the largest player and receives up to 85 per cent of all inquiries, which is approx. 20 each month at present. Whether an idea or solution will be tested, is 100% up to the clinicians to decide.

Research and test center for health technology

An important collaborator for Denmark’s five regions is VihTek – a regional research and test center for health technology. VihTek was established in 2015 and carries out assessments of technologies within three areas: rehabilitation, prevention of complications during hospitalization, and cross-sectorial cooperation.

“VihTek ensures that companies’ prototypes are quickly evaluated by clinicians or patients in hospitals, so companies can adjust their products. Next step is to test the solution and find out how it works in a clinical practice. The complex logistics of hospitals poses different requirements for new solutions. It is essential that we not only test functionality but also that a product can endure e.g. the hospitals’ fully automated washing and easily be handled by different professionals and patients,” says Charlotte Kira Kimby, Head of Department, VihTek.

Focus on smart solutions

The past year, VihTek has evaluated and tested 16 solutions. Focus is particularly on testing intelligent solutions that make working methods in hospitals even smarter and that better support the patients.

“Two major challenges for the elderly are pressure sore and lack of physical activity when they are hospitalized. Therefore, we are testing a sore protective hospital bed that slowly oscillates the patients and counteracts bedsores. The bed can also oscillate the patient at night to relieve pressure. Thus, patients do not have to be woken up at night and turned around by two nurses. Intelligent beds have great potential,” says Charlotte Kira Kimby.

“Another example is a patch that measures very small movements and which can monitor hospitalized patients’ physical activity. This is useful if we want to increase patients’ physical activity, because the data from the patch can be used in the dialogue between patients and the health care personnel. Lying just a few days in the hospital bed has a bad effect on their rehabilitation,” she adds.

Although VihTek has only existed for two years, Charlotte Kira Kimby already enjoys high demand from the industry and a growing demand from abroad.

“Now, we are evaluating solutions from England and Norway, and we hope that our sparring and testing processes can help boost innovation and the employment of Nordic and European solutions in the years to come.”

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