The Department of Health, Technology Strategy Board and Economic and Social Research will provide universities and businesses across Britain with more than £9m to develop cost effective technology services for independent living.
According to the TSB, the decision to invest in the eight projects follows a competition managed by the its Assisted Living Innovation Platform, which supports UK businesses and the health care sector to develop new technologies and services to support older people and those with long-term conditions.
The Technology Strategy Board will invest £6.8m in the projects while the Economic and Social Research Council will invest £1.5m and the Department of Health’s National Institute for Health Research £0.5m, an addition £3m is expected to come from private business partners.
The money will be distributed across Leeds University, Queen Mary University of London, Newcastle University, Sheffield University, St Andrews University and Coventry University. Tunstall Healthcare and Healthcare Over Internet Protocol Community Interest Company, who will also look at the impact and value of assisted living.
Iain Gray, the Technology Strategy Board’s chief executive, said: “New technologies can play a vital role in enhancing the health and wellbeing of older people and those with long-term conditions.
“However, while assisted-living technologies are becoming increasingly available and affordable, their adoption is far from extensive. Understanding the market for such products is a vital step towards meeting the needs of users and service providers.’
The projects will take between two to three years to complete and they are due to start between January and April 2011.