Swansea Morriston Hospital and Cardiff University join forces with E2L product designers Monmouth
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MediWales Innovation Awards feature E2L's collaboration with the NHS for second successive year

Every year the MEDIWALES Innovation Awards showcase outstanding achievement in the Welsh Healthcare Industry and this year's ceremony was held on Tuesday, 10th December in the Great Hall of the National Museum, Cardiff. Collaboration between the NHS and industry is recognised as an important aspect of transferring innovative ideas into real products and improving the levels of care and service, and increasing the prosperity of Wales.

ABM University health Board

The award this year was for an endoscope training device; this enables clinicians to learn, and sustain through practice, the essential steering skills when conducting investigations into the oesophagus, lungs or stomach. This ensures that the user has re-established their skills prior to applying the procedure to a patient - the effect is similar to that of a golfer taking a few swings on the practice range prior to driving-off in the competition.

A product has resulted, known as 'ScopeSim', and is now on the market. It was lauched at Europe's largest medical exhibition 'MEDICA' in Germany in November. Existing devices are either very high technology, very expensive and some lack haptic feedback. Low technology devices exist but are of limited use as they do not attempt to simulate anatomical structures and tend to be of a fixed degree of difficulty, similarly there are no metrics for assessing one's skill improvement with practice. This solution provides haptic feedback, can change the degree of difficulty by changing the maze, and assesses the speed of navigation for measurement and self- improvement.

Academic studies have been undertaken by Consultant Anaesthetists at the ABMU NHS Trust, Swansea and academics from the Cardiff School of Medicine, indicating radical improvement for any level of expertise by periodic practice using this training device. The collaboration was established by Swansea Innovation Ltd.

"We are extremely happy to be recognised for our innovative thinking for a second year, and with a different collaborative partner, and it would suggest our strategic approach to developing new, worthwhile products in the healthcare sector is paying off " said Lyndon Owen, MD.