Innovation challenge to deliver new locally manufactured medtech

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The Victorian Government has announced $400,000 in funding for two new innovation challenges to fast-track the development of healthcare products in the state.

Announcing the funding at Swinburne University on Tuesday, Minister for Medical Research Jaala Pulford said the Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery Medtech Challenge and the Swinburne LivingAT Health Innovation Challenge would strengthen ties between allied health workers, researchers, developers, and manufacturers while propelling the commercialisation of new ideas.

“This program is backing the brightest minds to innovate and design new technologies that will assist people with disabilities or health conditions such as diabetes and osteoarthritis to live more independently and improve their quality of life,” the Minister said.

“We’re supporting local production of health and medtech products to create new local jobs, reduce our reliance on overseas suppliers and protect us from supply chain disruptions.”

The Medtech Challenge at the Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery will focus on developing special equipment to help people with conditions such as type 2 diabetes, osteoarthritis, and neurological conditions like epilepsy.

The Swinburne LivingAT Health Innovation Challenge is expected to produce customized designs for new mobility aids such as wheelchairs and walkers.

The projects are supported by the Australian Medtech Manufacturing Centre, which aims to propel the state’s push to become a global leader in healthcare design and innovation while also developing local manufacturing capacity and creating jobs.

They go hand in hand with recent government investments in medtech, which have allowed companies like Compumedics to manufacture its medical-grade wearable monitoring gadget in Abbotsford after a decade of doing so abroad.

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