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The 2015 national meeting – key outputs

With a wide range of speakers and a diverse group of delegates, summarising the outputs from our national meeting is not always easy. This year, a clear message emerged: to successfully develop and commercialise a technology, you need to engage with the right people at the right time. To ensure a technology is safe, legal, focussed on the end user and has a good evidence base to prove its benefits to patients and to the NHS as a whole, it’s vital that you bring in the necessary expertise at the right point during the process.

Drawing on the keynote presentations and the workshop discussions, we’ve summarised the main learning points below, looking at both engagement with end users and accessing the various legal and business expertise required for successful commercialisation. (Read a detailed write up of the event itself here):

Engage with the end users – the public or healthcare professionals

  1. Engage during development again and again!
  2. Produce easy to use pictures and briefs.
  3. Ask a wide base for their views.
  4. Go to the users – don’t expect them to come to you.

Find approachable patenting and CE marking advisors

  1. Understanding what is and isn’t patentable is important.
  2. Seek advice on patenting and CE marking as soon as you have an idea!
  3. Plan budgets with patenting and CE marking in mind

Health economics and statistics are vital to good product evaluation.

  1. Grab as much early advice as you can.
  2. Evaluation doesn’t always mean a randomised controlled trial.
  3. Your first conversation is almost always likely to be free!

Starting and funding a company

  1. Good advice from the right people are key
  2. Protect your ideas with a good IP strategy.
  3. Funders look to the IP position.
  4. It takes more time and more money than you think
  5. It’s incredibly rewarding