Category: News

‘Design Thinking & Embedding a Culture of Innovation’: Dr Barry McMahon leads Module 2 in our Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation

   |   By  |  0 Comments

On Friday and Saturday 6th and 7th of November Health Innovation Hub Ireland and TCD welcomed students to Module 2 of the Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation (Level 9 NFQ).

Taking place online (due to ongoing government restrictions), the course was opened on Friday with welcome addresses from Dr Barry Mc Mahon, Chief Physicist/Clinical Associate (Clinical Medicine), Trinity College Dublin; Dr. John Dinsmore, Assistant Professor in Digital Integrated Care and the Health Innovation Lead of the Trinity Centre for Practice and Healthcare Innovation (TCPHI); and Professor Paul Coughlan, Professor in Operations Management and Director of Accreditation & Quality Assurance at Trinity Business School.

The objective of this module was to understand and use design thinking methodologies in a group environment to try to solve healthcare challenges. Creativity and design can be combined with knowledge and experience to accelerate and drive improvements in the delivery of healthcare. Students explored how healthcare organisations can develop and transform their services, their processes, and create new products ideas.

Working in teams, the students identified a healthcare challenge, developed a prototype solution, and finished the module with a pitch in front of a panel of Dr Barry McMahon, Dr John Dinsmore, Prof Paul Coughlan, Ann Quinn (Organisational and Development lead at Children’s Health Ireland), and Fran Hegarty (Chief Healthcare Technology Officer at New Children’s Hospital Dublin). Using these ‘real world’ challenges allows students the opportunity to develop critical thinking, creative problem solving, and visualisation methodologies.

More information on the HIHI/TCD Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation can be found here or email Nina Holmes,


HIHI/HSE Health Innovation Champion Scholarships announced

  |   By  |  0 Comments

HIHI/HSE Health Innovation Champion Scholarships announced

 Today Health Innovation Hub Ireland (HIHI) announces the seven HSE staff who have been successful in gaining a scholarship place on the second year of the clinician led HIHI and Trinity College Dublin Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation. From almost 50 applicants these seven, (detail in notes) were identified as high potential change makers in the Irish health system and offered a scholarship place among a class of health industry and health sector students.

A HSE and Enterprise Ireland partnership, HIHI holds a number of places for HSE scholarships, offering reduced fees. The aim is to reach right across levels, grades and disciplines in the health service offering the academic opportunity to all. The 2020/21 cohort of HIHI/HSE Health Innovation Champions come from organisations spanning the country – Cork, Dublin, Drogheda, Tullamore, Westmeath, Mayo and Donegal representing a diverse range of roles, departments and levels. These seven  are now part of an action focused learning community of 18, focused on accelerating change within their organisations. Over the 12-month programme, the students will complete eight modules, have access to workshops, resources and events to share challenges and experience, learn from expert guest lecturers.

Focusing on new health solutions, students gain a practical understanding of applying new technologies in healthcare.  Examining the role of health economics, quality improvement and the principles of governance in leading effective, innovative health services is a key learning. The postgraduate course culminates with modules seven and eight focusing on a practical project comprising two phases. Along with their fellow students, HIHI/HSE Innovation Champions will be supported to identify and implement  an innovative solution suitable for  each participant’s workplace, that will have a positive impact in Irish healthcare. As the HSE continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, innovation – new ways of doing things – is  vital to the health sector.

Course Director Prof Seamas Donnelly said:

“Speaking as a clinician on the frontline, I know we need to adjust and reset some approaches in healthcare in Ireland and this postgraduate course is part of that effort. Our students are confident and inspirational leaders, learning to create their personal innovation framework to apply in healthcare organisations. All of our students share a common vision of creating an innovative healthcare system to change the system and improve outcomes for patients.

”The application process for this year’s Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation was more competitive than ever, with a very high number of applications. I want to publically congratulate the outstanding applicants who have been accepted onto the programme.”

Sustained innovation in Irish healthcare, at an economically and fiscally responsible pace, must be a collaborative effort, requiring input from key players across the health landscape. HIHI and TCD recognise this and deliberately recruit students from both the health sector and the enterprise of health to the postgraduate diploma in healthcare innovation. The Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation is currently delivered entirely online in keeping with government recommendations. Lectures will take place in TCD’s Tangent in the TCD business school on campus when these are lifted.


 HIHI/HSE Health Innovation Champion Scholarships awardees:

Name Title Organisation Location
Eleanor Campbell Clinical Specialist Radiographer in the Emergency Department (ED) Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda
Antoinette Doherty Clinical nurse Specialist/ Advanced Nurse Prcatitioner CHO Area 1 Donegal
John Kelly Deputy CEO Tallaght University Hospital Dublin
Marie Prendergast Business Manager
Primary Care
Community Healthcare Organisation 2 Castlebar, Co Mayo
Niamh Gibney Senior Occupational Therapist Community Mental Health Centre Mullingar, Co. Westmeath
Eileen Lombard Senior Physiotherapist Mercy University Hospital Cork
Wishes to remain anonymous     Tullamore, Co Offaly

St James’ Hospital recruits patients with TB for Video Direct Observational Therapy study to investigate smartphone versus community care, in an Irish research first

   |   By  |  0 Comments

A Health Innovation Hub Ireland (HIHI) pilot study with St James’ Hospital will investigate the benefits of using technology against in person care in Tuberculosis (TB) medication adherence. In both the United Kingdom and the United States, the standard of care to ensure TB medication compliance is Video Direct Observational Therapy (VDOTS). The patient records a video ingesting medication remotely and submits securely via software to the TB nurse. Currently in Ireland, a community nurse physically visits a patient with TB medication adherence, watches each take their medication and records it manually on a hard copy – this is Direct Observational Therapy (DOT).

The public health nurse visits a patient’s home either once or twice a day, within the traditional DOT system for TB medication adherence,in use across Ireland depending on the treatment plan. By contrast, VDOTS uses a mobile smartphone application that allows patients to remotely record and send videos of every medication dose ingested. The nurse then views the date and time stamped videos on a secure web-based client management system (CMS) that is password protected. Once a patient’s videos are uploaded to the web portal, they are automatically deleted from the smartphone.

In 2018 in Ireland, there were 315 cases of TB notified with 38.4 per cent of total cases reported in Dublin. St James’ TB Clinical Nurse Specialist, Loraine Dolan approached HIHI to support the pilot study. The pilot will run for up to 18 months and test if VDOTS is superior to DOTS in recording doses of TB treatment that up to 40 Irish patients receive. The study will assess patient quality of life, cost effectiveness and resource efficiencies e.g. hours saved.  A similar UK study, published in The Lancet last year, found that the costs of providing DOT over six months were estimated at £5,700 per patient for observations five times per week and £3,420 for observations three times per week. For daily VOT over 6 months, costs were estimated at £1645 per patient.

Mary Day CEO St James’ Hospital said:

“As Irelands’ largest hospital, St James is committed to realising the full value of health technology and remote care to reduce the burden on the acute setting, achieve cost savings and empower our patients as active participants in their own care. We need this now more than ever.

“This HIHI/St James’ pilot has been driven by ingenuity on the frontline through Lorraine, with the invaluable support of Health Innovation Hub Ireland whose Dublin office is based here in St James Hospital.”

Eimear Galvin, HIHI TCD Manager said:

“Part of the HIHI national network is based in St James hospital, so we are very pleased to support this study and to have secured the software at no cost to the health service for the pilot duration.

“The need for remote care and patient management that technology such as this delivers is even more urgent now since Covid-19.  As a leader in digital health in Ireland, St James’ is the ideal site to test VDOT.”

Lorraine Dolan TB Nurse Specialist and study PI said:

“TB is a curable disease; however duration of treatment is lengthy ranging from six months to two years depending on the type and location of TB. The main aim of DOT is to ensure that patients take their medications each day and most importantly complete the treatment course.

“Although not a complete replacement for DOTs, VDOTS empowers patients who can engage with it, to live their lives normally without constraints and interruption to their working day or home life with a nurse visit. This HIHI/St James study will be the first to offer the VDOTS option to TB patients.”

TB remains a global health threat. In 2018, 1.5 million people died from TB. TB now ranks as the leading cause of death worldwide from an infectious agent, resulting in more deaths than HIV and malaria (WHO, 2019). Globally there were 10 million new cases of TB in 2018. Directly observed treatment (DOT) has been the standard of care for tuberculosis since the early 1990s, but in some cases can  be   inconvenient for patients and service providers. The use of VDOT has emerged in the last decade with the improvements in technology as an alternative approach in ensuring compliance with TB treatment.


Health Innovation Hub Ireland

HIHI has a remit from the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, and the Department of Health to support business development and positively impact healthcare. HIHI recognises that collaboration with business can benefit patient care, patient pathways and outcomes. The hub’s national network connects innovative healthcare products with people qualified to test them, through usability, pilot and validation studies, supporting the development of new healthcare technologies and exposing the Irish health system to the latest innovative solutions. There are three hubs in the national network – Cork, Galway and Dublin.

 St James Hospital TB Centre

Established in St. James’s Hospital in 2004 the TB service comprises a multi-disciplinary team comprising of Consultant Respiratory Physicians, Registrar, TB Clinical Nurse Specialist, Senior Pharmacist, Public Health Doctors and Nurses, and administration staff work together.  Their aim is to ensure patients are seen efficiently, receive the appropriate TB investigations and treatment and support the patients to enable completion of treatment. Most patients with TB are treated as an outpatient. In Ireland, there were 315 cases of TB notified in 2018 with 38.4 per cent of total cases reported in Dublin (HSE, Health Protection surveillance Centre).

Lancet Study

Smartphone-enabled video-observed versus directly observed treatment for tuberculosis: a multicentre, analyst-blinded, randomised, controlled superiority trial (VOLUME 393, ISSUE 10177, P1216-1224, MARCH 23, 2019)



New academic year, new HIHI Postgrad cohort, new ways of teaching – welcome innovation class of 2020/21

   |   By  |  0 Comments

Health Innovation Hub Ireland and TCD welcomed the 2020/21 Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation (Level 9 NFQ) class on Friday 2 and Saturday 3. As with the inaugural year, students come from a wide range of healthcare backgrounds that will fortify the national network of healthcare innovators created by last years 2019/20 class.

Module one kicked off with a remote welcome from Course Director Prof Seamas Donnelly, Course Tutor Dan Maher and 2019/20 student Caitriona Heffernan, Senior Speech and Language Therapist, in the new home of the postgrad in Tangent on the TCD campus, though for now students are tuning in online.  HIHI National Director Colman Casey also spoke with the class offering a wide breath of knowledge of the innovation landscape in Ireland.

Guest speakers for Module One were Prof Brian Caulfield, leader of UCD’s connected health programme and Director of INSIGHT, and Conor Hanley, CEO of Irish scuccess story FIRE1, whose novel remote monitoring solution to improve outcomes for heart failure patients has raised millions in investor funding.

The first module in the Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation examines the complex and rapidly changing world of global healthcare. A core focus is the dynamics of the quadruple helix (Government, Academia, Industry, Citizen/Patient) exploring the impact of disruptive innovation across each strand. The module takes this informed view of the present status of healthcare and begins exploring future innovations and directional trends.

More information on the HIHI/TCD Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation can be found here or email Nina Holmes,

Today marks the official launch of HealthTech Ireland – the new name for the Irish Medical & Surgical Trade Association (IMSTA)

  |   By  |  0 Comments

The new name, HealthTech Ireland, better reflects the technological nature of what the members do, including the provision of digital, diagnostic and device solutions that help people live healthier lives. Visit the new website:

The rebranding reflects the determination of the representative body to continue to advocate for and promote the best in Irish health technology and the companies that produce, service and promote it.

Please note that email addresses will change from to . Learn more about the new name and brand identity here

HIHI clients lead Irish Startup consortium win of EU grant for COVID-19 Monitoring and Triaging Platform

  |   By  |  0 Comments

A consortium led by Think Biosolution, an Irish Medtech SME won a €150,000 grant from DIGI-B-CUBE call. Irish consortium partners Wellola and Think Biosolution are both clients of national innovation center Health Innovation Hub Ireland, which facilitated their connection. from Italy, and SYNYO Gmbh from Austria make up the remainder of the consortium. Together they will further develop and test EU’s first automated triaging platform for COVID-19 patients.

“In total, 217 applications from 470 SMEs were received by DIGI-B-CUBE. The applications cover 34 countries from all over Europe and its associated countries. After an intense review period of four weeks, a total of 17 applications were selected for funding. Eight projects got Prototyping Vouchers worth up to €60,000 per project, and nine projects for Customised Solution Innovation Vouchers are worth up to €150,000 per project.

In the current cohort, Customised Solution Innovation Vouchers were granted for topics like Sleep Apnea Test Device, COVID-19 Monitoring, and in vitro cellular immunoassays. The DIGI-B-CUBE call aim at unlocking the cross-sectoral collaborative potential of SMEs by combining novel digital technologies with the Bioimaging/Biosensing/Biobanking and related industries. The next and final cut-off date for the submission of customized solution innovation and prototyping vouchers is on 03 February 2021.” Said Dr. Udatha Gupta, Project Coordinator of DIGI-B-CUBE and Director (Digital & EU), Oslo Cancer Cluster, Oslo Norway.

“This DIGI-B-CUBE funding will be instrumental for us to launch our COVID-19 platform in the EU from a regulatory framework. Our strong consortium of partners will ensure that our platform is regulatory compliant as well as delivers value in terms of patient adherence and early warning score to At-Home COVID-19 patients”, said Dr. Shourjya Sanyal, Think Biosolution.

“Wellola is proud to collaborate with our partner, Think Biosolution, on such an innovative and exciting project; the outcome of which has the potential to deliver enormous clinical and economic benefit in multiple healthcare settings on a global scale”, added Sonia Neary, MD at Wellola.

Links –

HIHI’s Spark Ignite Competition Finals!

   |   By  |  0 Comments

We are delighted to announce that the Health Innovation Hub Ireland’s Spark Ignite competition finals are happening this week.

Our regional finals are kicking off with Cork on the 7th July followed by Dublin on the 8th July, and Galway on the 9th July. All finals kick off at 6pm. You can find more information on the finals, and get the link to tune in and support your colleagues by following any of the Eventbrite links below.

We will also have our national final on the 15th July at 6pm. This will see the team and individual category winners from each region battle out for the national title.

We are really excited to share these live pitches with you, and we hope you will join us in supporting your colleagues for the amazing initiative and innovation that they are bringing to the Irish healthcare system. After working with them this past 3 weeks, we are really blown away at the quality of the pitches, and can’t wait to share them with you.

Eventbrite Cork Link:

Eventbrite Dublin Link:

Eventbrite Galway Link:

Eventbrite National Final Link:



Webinar 2 in the series: ‘The Role of Digital Health Technologies in the Fight Against Covid-19’

   |   By  |  0 Comments

We are delighted to announce the next in our series of  Health Innovation Hub Ireland Webinars entitled “The Role of Digital Health Technologies in the Fight Against COVID-19” .
The webinar guest speakers this month are Dr Shourjya Sanyal, ThinkBiosolution and Sonia Neary, Wellola.
It will take place on Friday the 19th of June at 2 pm.
I have included further information along with a registration link below.

When : 14:00 Friday the 19th of June 2020


14:00 – Webinar begins

14:05 – Welcome

14:15 – Dr Shourjya Sanyal, ThinkBiosolution

14:30 – Sonia Neary, Wellola

14:45 – Questions and Answers Session

Have a question?  Log onto Slido now with the event code 88246

Register: HERE 


Eimer O’Connell
Research Associate
Health Innovation Hub Ireland 
National University of Ireland, Galway

New Scheme aimed at Supporting the Production of Covid-19 related products announced

   |   By  |  0 Comments


  • The COVID Products Scheme will accelerate the production of vital medicines, potential vaccines and essential medical equipment.
  • The scheme allows for grant aid of up to 50% of eligible capital investment.
  • The life sciences sector directly employs over 60,000 people in Ireland.

Thursday June 4, 2020

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD, today announced details of a new grant scheme aimed at supporting the production of vital medicines and medical equipment in Ireland. The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation received approval for the scheme from the European Commission today.

The COVID Products Scheme has been developed under a new European Commission Temporary Framework that allows additional aid to be granted by EU Member States to companies that are developing or producing medicinal products used in the fight against COVID-19. The scheme will be delivered through IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland under the terms of the Temporary Framework, which is aimed at supporting the research, development, and production of COVID-19 related products in Ireland.

The scheme allows for up to €200m in targeted State support to facilitate the research and development of COVID products, to enable the construction or upgrading of testing and upscaling infrastructures that contribute to the development COVID-19 relevant products, as well as to support the production of products needed to respond to the outbreak.

Minister Humphreys said: “The challenge of COVID-19 is first and foremost a health emergency and we will continue to prioritise the medical response to the pandemic. The intention of this new scheme is to accelerate the production of vital medicines and potential vaccines, along with essential equipment, used in the fight against COVID-19”.

Minister Humphreys continued: “The life sciences sector directly employs over 60,000 people right around the country and virtually all of the world’s top companies have chosen Ireland as a manufacturing base. This new scheme aims to capitalise on that hard-earned reputation and the positive effects of this additional investment will be felt not only in additional direct employment, but also throughout the economy, as many companies based in Ireland are an integral part of the materials and services supply chain”.

The introduction of the scheme will allow IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland to generate significant additional capital investment from firms in the life sciences sector, thereby helping the national economic recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. Companies in the pharmaceutical sector, including a number of existing IDA clients, are currently engaged in developing both COVID-19 treatments and vaccines. Companies are also seeking to increase manufacturing capacity to meet intense global demand for treatments found to be effective.

CEO of IDA Ireland, Martin Shanahan, said: “This new State Aid Framework sanctioned for Ireland by the EU and targeted at Medicinal products for Covid-19 is a significant step forward.  The Life Sciences sector will be central to creating an environment where human health is protected and economic life can begin to return to normal and this will allow us to support the sector.

“The size and breadth of Ireland’s Life Sciences industry makes us well placed to leverage the Framework to support the industry to quickly respond to Covid-19 demand and form a key pillar in Ireland’s comprehensive economic recovery plan.”

CEO of Enterprise Ireland, Julie Sinnamon, said: “Enterprise Ireland very much welcomes the announcement of this new scheme.  We have a fantastic cluster of Irish companies in the medtech, engineering, consumer and digital technology sectors in Ireland who have demonstrated the strength of their innovative capabilities in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Driven by the increased demand for lifesaving solutions their response to Covid-19 has positioned the country 6th in the world for Covid19 innovations and will see growth opportunities for this cohort across the globe.  The Commission’s approval of this new scheme will allow us to further support this sector in driving increased innovation and production of products, supporting research and development of Covid-19 products, and enabling the construction or upgrading of testing and manufacturing facilities in Ireland.”

The scheme allows for grant aid of up to 50% of eligible capital investment. This will ensure that the intervention will have a substantial impact on COVID-19 related production and will drive a significant return for the State.

Details on the opening of the scheme will be made available in the coming days. Applications for aid under the scheme must be approved no later than 31 December, 2020.



The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation (DBEI) plays a key role in implementing the Government’s policies of stimulating the productive capacity of the economy and creating an environment which supports job creation and maintenance. The Department has lead responsibility for Irish policy on global trade and inward investment and a remit to promote fair competition in the marketplace, protect consumers and safeguard workers.

For further information, members of the media can contact Press Office, D/Business, Enterprise and Innovation, or (01) 631-2200

If you no longer wish to receive emails from the Department of Business Enterprise and Innovation Press Office, please notify us by email to

A comprehensive listing of supports, grants, and advice available to businesses affected by COVID-19 is available at


Contact the Business Support Call Centre

The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation has established a Business Support Call Centre for information on the business supports available to businesses and enterprises affected by COVID-19. It can be reached at or (01) 631 2002.