WM Health Technologies Cluster worked alongside The Binding Site on the programme – DIAGCOMM – the West Midlands Diagnostics Innovation Community – created for companies working in the diagnostics sector.
Diagnostics is a strength of the West Midlands and the region is home to a cluster of highly innovative companies ranging from small biotechs to multinationals and includes a whole range of organisations that contribute to the supply chain. However, diagnostics is an expensive, complex business and funding, R&D, regulation, procurement and market penetration are challenges experienced by everyone.
DIAGCOMM was an initiative, free to join, that supported our emerging diagnostics cluster that will bought our region’s fragmented capabilities together and to create a collaborative community focused on innovation that will support business growth and market access. The Community was industry-led and comprised of business, NHS, academic, investors, regulators and policy makers and run by the WM Health Technologies Cluster (WMHTC).
DIAGCOMM provided a safe space to innovate and enable the members to access and exploit new markets (including but not limited to Covid-19), identify and share risk, access local suppliers, work together on issues that are too expensive/risky to address alone, collaborate to attract funding and secure investment from investors with experience and understanding of this complex sector. There also was a small pot of funding to support feasibility/proof of concept studies that linked members of the Community.
DIAGCOMM was launched on Tuesday 3rd August 2021 at the WMHTC Topical Tuesday on diagnostics.1 Initially they looked for companies to tell state which specific areas they wanted tailored support and where the gaps in support currently are so that they can be filled. It looked for organisations that:
- Developed new diagnostic products and services
- Operated in the supply chain (e.g. reagents, hardware, consumables, bespoke packaging …)
- Had relevant specialist facilities (e.g. clean rooms, prototyping services, small scale manufacture)
- Had specialist knowledge to share (e.g. regulation, labelling, shelf life optimisation)
- Investors interested in the sector.
For more information please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org