Public services and the communities they serve are facing some pretty big challenges. We don’t always have the answers to these. The GovTech Catalyst is a UK Government scheme that aims to help technology firms develop innovative fixes to public sector challenges.
Torfaen’s successful bid to the GovTech Catalyst resulted in a bid of up to £1.25 million of Cabinet Office funding to encourage technology firms to develop and pilot solutions to our challenge to use data and digital technology to deliver better adult social care.
In Phase 1, five potential projects will be selected to receive funding up to £50,000 each to cover research and development costs. The best of these could be awarded funding up to £500,000 in Phase 2 to turn these potential solutions into viable products or services.
How might we use data and digital technology to deliver better adult social care?
Adult social care will play a major part in keeping some of us well, independent, living in the community, and out of hospital for longer.
It can involve help to carry out the basic tasks of living such as getting in and out of bed, getting dressed, eating or accessing the community. It could equally be about timely information and advice, planning our support or keeping us safe from abuse or neglect.
However, demand for social care is increasing, resources are under pressure and we know that we need to become smarter in targeting support to those that need it most.
This requires effective approaches to be developed that manage and reduce demand, increase efficiency whilst delivering quality and well-being.
Torfaen is a small county on the eastern end of the Valleys of South East Wales. It is home to 93,000 people with 1 in every 56 households within the county receiving a package of home care. Projections show that by 2039 the number of people over the age of 85 in Torfaen will have more than doubled from 2,541 to 5,594 .  Population based projections (2014), Welsh Government.
If we don’t take action to keep people as well and independent for as long as possible, and find innovative solutions that address health and social care needs, then public services will not be able to cope with future demand.
The challenge is to improve service efficiency and at the same time increase independence and support well-being. If we aren't delivering precisely what people need, we are being wasteful and potentially causing unnecessary problems down the line.
About GovTech Catalyst
GovTech Catalyst is a mechanism to enable the public sector to procure digital and technological innovation by engaging with innovative companies to gain access to the best solutions.
For this challenge we would hope to see projects that address how technology can track in real-time and join up how we deploy and sensitively prioritise all our resources to best effect.
We recognise that this is a highly complex challenge and we do not expect proposals to fully address the whole scope. We expect to fund a portfolio of projects that address significant aspects of this ‘grand challenge’.
Particular areas that we would like to see solutions developed for are:
- How we can use technology to improve the point of entry into adult social care?
- How we can create more dynamic and flexible systems of care that are more responsive to the changing needs of the people we care for?
- How do we make better use of evidence to inform commissioning both now and in the future?
You can read more about our challenge on the Innovation Funding Service website.
Please see our GovTech Catalyst FAQs for information about eligibility, funding and other details about the competition.
Interested companies can register before midday on Wednesday 17 July 2019 12pm, should they wish to apply.
What do successful suppliers get?
The overall programme will be delivered over two phases. We are now in phase 1 of a potential 2 phase competition. A decision to proceed with phase 2 will depend on the outcomes from phase 1.
Phase 1 - is intended to show the technical feasibility of the proposed concept. Suppliers have the opportunity to apply for up to £50,000 (including VAT) to research and develop ideas and proposals, plus the opportunity to bid for additional funding in Phase 2.
Phase 2 - is only open to organisations that have completed Phase 1. Suppliers can apply for up to £500,000 (including VAT) to have the opportunity to turn potential solutions into viable products or services.
The application process is managed by Small Business Research Initiative (SRBI).
Last Modified: 05/07/2019
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