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Webinar examines the key role of higher education in supporting enhanced healthcare innovation 

Fiona Schaefer

A new webinar from formal NHS Scotland partner InnoScot Health will be spotlighting leading approaches to harnessing higher education in the support of healthcare innovation. 

The organisation’s last ‘lunch & learn’ session for the first half of 2024 is entitled Engaging students in healthcare innovation for an improved NHS and will provide interesting perspectives on this key facet of turning ideas into health service improvements. 

Hosted on Microsoft Teams on Wednesday 26 June from 12 until 12.45pm, the free to join webinar will be introduced by Innovation Manager, Fiona Schaefer. 

She will discuss InnoScot Health’s work over the past two years in providing more than 10 teams of students from Heriot-Watt University Engineering Design and Manufacture and Glasgow School of Art’s product design manufacture students with real world project briefs from NHS innovators. 

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She will be joined by two guest speakers: 

  • Dr Theodore Lim, Programme Director of MSc in Advance Mechanical Engineering with Industrial Applications at Heriot-Watt University who has been providing academic support to engineering design and manufacturing students working on healthcare projects 
  • Lorraine Thomson, Business Engagement Manager at Interface who works with organisations to match them to Scotland’s world-leading academic expertise, helping to turn innovative ideas into reality and introducing businesses to resources they never knew were available to them 

Over the past two years, InnoScot Health has provided 10 teams of Heriot-Watt University Engineering Design and Manufacture students with real world project briefs from NHS innovators and supported them through their final or Masters year project. 

Fiona Schaefer said: “Over the past couple of years, InnoScot Health has successfully engaged with students at Heriot-Watt University and Glasgow School of Art. This has resulted in enduring collaborative relationships and this webinar will provide a showcase of successes to date. 

“We’re also delighted to have great guest speakers. Dr Lim has 14 years’ experience of working in industry. He first introduced the design and manufacturing discipline to Heriot-Watt University, ushering in the addition of industrial projects to the undergraduate programme, and medical projects in partnership with St John’s Hospital in Livingston. 

“Lorraine of Interface will further provide engaging views which draw on the organisation’s role as a central hub connecting industry and academia, often leading to enhanced healthcare innovation. 

“A Q&A section will round off the webinar, allowing attendees to probe and receive guidance on their own particular areas of interest.” 

She added: “While InnoScot Health is pausing its webinar series for the summer holiday season and recommencing in late August, we’re already looking to the autumn for innovation challenges which could suit engagement with engineering students to explore a new concept, test ideas, or explore solutions to a pressing problem.” 

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