SBRI with Welsh Ambulance Services: Changing the Way We Deliver Emergency Care

An exciting opportunity to work with the Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust (WAST) and Health Boards to reduce the unprecedented demand on ambulances and Urgent & Emergency Care services.

Opportunity Details


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Phase 1: Development – up to 3 projects up to £75k each. Phase 2: Testing – up to 3 projects up to £265k each (only open to phase 1 participants). Phase 3 funding tbc.


NHS Wales

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Our patients are waiting longer than they should for an ambulance response and once at hospital, can spend a considerable amount of time in the ambulance before handover to the Emergency Department (ED) clinical teams.

We would like to be able to transform the way urgent and emergency care is given, looking to support WAST’s strategic ambition to care for more patients in their own home or in a community setting, thus safely reducing the number of patients requiring conveyance to hospital.

There is an opportunity to enhance the WAST infrastructure to allow us to provide care closer to home. WAST is a ‘super-connector’ across health and care settings with ambitious plans to transform their service delivery model to improve clinical outcomes, improve patient experience and alleviate ‘system pressure’ upon Urgent & Emergency Care services. To do this, equipping our people with the right tools and technology is important to enable the ‘right care in the right place’.

Challenge details

We would like to invite industry to enable us to provide care closer to home. Innovative solutions are sought to enhance one (or more) of the following themes:

  • Improving capabilities in the pre-hospital setting that can enable patients to be cared for closer to home. This could include Point of Care Testing (e.g. blood tests with rapid results), wearable technology solutions and mobile scanning equipment; and
  • Use of technology to support patient care, enhance communication and improve patient safety during initial diagnosis or in cases of prolonged community waits for an ambulance or 111 response, or awaiting an urgent appointment at a place of definitive care.

We are looking for solutions that will provide a positive outcome with high-impact for the population of Wales. In particular, demand for ambulance/Urgent and Emergency Care services is high for:

  • People that have fallen – patients that have been on the floor for a significant amount of time (long lies);
  • People experiencing respiratory problems – especially acute exacerbations of chronic conditions; and
  • People experiencing chest pain – where the nature of the pain cannot currently be confirmed in the pre-hospital setting.

There are many diagnostic solutions on the market.  This challenge aims to bring solutions together to develop an ambulance sector solution for use in the pre-hospital environment.

We are looking to identify, develop and demonstrate technology and equipment that could:

  • Be suitable for mobile use (pre-hospital use);
  • Fit into the current infrastructure and be deployable across vehicle types;
  • Use artificial intelligence, augmented technology and or natural language processing to enhance current systems and processes;
  • Be suitable for use across pre-hospital clinical professionals/response personnel;
  • Support appropriate use of ambulances by the community;
  • Build community resilience to support patients at home during an episode of urgent/emergency care need;
  • Enable decision making and care to be provided closer to home;
  • Support patients’ continued independent living;
  • Complement and encourage community support; and
  • Be sustainable and affordable for both the public sector and the patient.

Out of Scope:

  • Replacement of vehicles; and
  • Integration to any national systems.

Challenge phases structure 

Phase 1: Development – From a total of £225,000, we expect to fund up to 3 projects up to a value of £75,000 (inclusive of VAT) each.

Note: Only projects successful at Phase 1 will be eligible to apply to Phases 2 and 3.

Phase 2: Testing – This Phase will be to robustly test, in a real-life environment, up to 3 of the successful Phase 1 solutions from a total fund of up to £800,000.  We expect to fund up to 3 projects at up to £265,000 (inclusive of VAT) each.

Please note if you are successful in Phase 1 and go through to Phase 2, you will need to provide a commercialisation plan/strategy as part of your contractual deliverables.

Briefing and support

An online briefing event will be held on Thursday 23rd February, 10am-noon: click here to register on Eventbrite.

For further information and supporting documentation, visit the SBRI Wales webpage linked below.


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