West Yorkshire Combined Authority will take the lead on supporting the region’s growing Healthtech Cluster from this month.
With more than 30 members from across the region, the Healthtech Cluster is a valued and diverse network sharing intelligence, ideas and opportunities, and providing mutual support.
It brings together a range of stakeholders including professional medical and health technology associations along with universities, health and care organisations and the regional enterprise partnership.
The Cluster evolved from Leeds City Region’s first cross-sector healthtech partnership, established by Leeds Academic Health Partnership in 2019, and which saw eight senior regional leaders signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU).
The MoU signalled the start of a shared commitment to develop a unified approach to overcoming barriers to healthtech innovation. Facilitated by Leeds Academic Health Partnership over the last three years, the Cluster has grown in strength and size.
Alongside the Healthtech Cluster, the region’s first health innovation marketing and communications group formed in 2021 to explore and exploit shared opportunities for raising the region’s profile in this sector.
Leeds Academic Health Partnership Director Kate Lodge said: “The Healthtech Cluster is a hugely active and dynamic network in our innovation ecosystem. The last three years have had their challenges but it is especially exciting to see so much growth and change across the region.
“West Yorkshire now has its own Mayor and the Combined Authority has launched a regional healthtech strategy. While Leeds Academic Health Partnership will remain closely involved, it’s fitting that, as the Healthtech Cluster goes from strength to strength, we pass our role as facilitators to a more regional level with the Combined Authority.”
Councillor Shabir Pandor, Chair of the Combined Authority’s Business, Economy and Innovation Committee and Leader of Kirklees Council said: “We are delighted to begin hosting the Healthtech Cluster and would like to thank Leeds Academic Health Partnership for their pivotal contribution in developing and nurturing the network to date.
“We are committed to supporting and strengthening regional connections within health and life sciences, and throughout our innovation ecosystem. The Healthtech Cluster is vital to helping achieve the shared vision set out in the Healthtech Strategy: making West Yorkshire the best-connected and most innovation-driven healthtech ecosystem in the country, providing unrivalled prospects to partner, locate and grow.
“We look forward to continuing to develop the Cluster and will work with Leeds Academic Health Partnership to ensure a seamless transition for Healthtech Cluster members.”