Innovation Programme 2021–22

Cambridge MedTech Foundation
6 min readApr 5, 2022

‘An eye-opening experience that had a good mix of guidance and teaching from industry experts coupled with a chance to work in an inter-disciplinary team to explore different MedTech solutions.’ — 4th Year Medical Student

In our fourth year of running the Innovation Programme, we were delighted to invite more participants into our programme than ever before, and we saw the return of all workshops and our Final Pitch Event to taking place in-person!

48 participants were selected from a diverse range of academic backgrounds, with an almost even split between undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Participants formed 8 different teams to work on solving one of four clinical problems presented at our first workshop. Our clinical problems this year included:

· Assessing the small vessels of the heartPresented by Dr Stephen Hoole (Consultant Cardiologist, Royal Papworth Hospital)

· Post-operative management of skin flapsPresented by Dr Stefan Mitrasinovic (Registrar in Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgery)

· Diagnosing shoulder problems in the communityPresented by Mr Niel Kang (Consultant Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgeon, Addenbrooke’s Hospital)

· Sharps SafetyPresented by Klaudine Simpson (Senior Clinical Skills Tutor, Addenbrooke’s Hospital)

We’d like to thank all of our clinical professionals for providing our participants with brilliant clinical unmet needs to address and for dedicating their time to mentoring the teams as they developed their MedTech solutions!

Once our participants were sorted into their teams, they began their journey developing a solution to their clinical problem. Over the course of 14 weeks, the teams attended workshops and mentoring sessions delivered by our partners.

‘The Innovation Programme was a truly unique experience. Not only did it allow me to develop interpersonal skills with different disciplines, but it also opened my eyes (and heart) to the impact MedTech can have on the community.’ — 1st Year Clinical Neuroscience PhD Student

At the second workshop of the programme, participants were introduced to Opportunity Evaluation and Teamwork by Andrew Hatcher from the Cambridge Judge Business School. This workshop introduced participants to the steps involved in formulating a value proposition and the key features of effective teamwork. Our fourth workshop saw Andrew return to teach our participants about the Business Model Canvas and how to approach developing an effective and well-researched business strategy for their MedTech solution.

During our third workshop, Abigail Bush, from Clinical Engineering Innovation (CEI), delivered a presentation on Concept Generation. CEI is Cambridge University Hospital Trust’s in-house team of engineers and scientists aiming to translate innovative medical technologies into patient benefit. Abigail taught our participants the principles of medical device development and took them, step-by-step, through the innovation pathway.

Our penultimate workshop was delivered by Iain Ansell and Matt Chandler, from Team Consulting, who gave our participants a comprehensive overview of how a MedTech idea translates From Concept To Product. The workshop focused on steps required to develop an idea further and expanded on the essential stages of the innovation pathway. As an award-winning medical device design and development consultancy based in Cambridge, UK, they shared their deep industry knowledge of this highly-regulated sector and provided incredibly valuable insight to the teams.

Following the December break, Simon Hall of Creative Warehouse delivered the final workshop on The Ten Secrets Of Perfect Pitching. He revealed the extraordinary benefits of utilising powerful tools such as storytelling, signposting, pausing and much more when pitching.

‘I learned a great deal about how to transform a medical idea to a business proposal, and had great fun working in an interdisciplinary team along the way’ — 3rd Year Medical Student

Our participants were also supported in developing their MedTech ideas through mentoring sessions delivered by our healthcare professionals, technical specialists from CEI and business experts from Start Codon (a Cambridge-based healthcare and life sciences investor and venture builder).

Our programme concluded in January with our Final Pitch Event during which all 8 teams presented their MedTech ideas to a panel of judges. This year’s judges included Dr Jag Ahluwalia (Non-executive director of Papworth Hospital, Chief Clinical Officer of Eastern AHSN, Honorary Fellow at Judge Business School), Iain Ansell (Consulting Director at Team Consulting) and Michael Salako (Investment Director at Start Codon).

This year we were delighted to invite everyone who played a part in the Innovation Programme Journey to our Final Pitch event, where we all witnessed an extraordinary standard of innovative ideas and engaging pitches presented by all the teams.

After an enthralling evening which showcased the amazing work done by the participants over 14 weeks, the judges selected Team NIRture as this year’s winner! They delivered a phenomenal pitch and were incredibly deserving of being crowned winners following all their hard work, dedication and fantastic teamwork. The members of Team NIRture (Evelina Sliauteryte, Tanrada Pansuwan, Rebecca Koh, Clara Chen and Ghifari Pradana) will be awarded the opportunity to visit Team Consulting’s Office in Ickleton and gain an experience of how they work as a consultancy agency.

This year’s Innovation Programme was proudly sponsored by Team Consulting and Start Codon. We are also grateful for the support we received from our academic partners at CEI, and the Entrepreneurship Centre at the Judge Business School. We would also like to thank everyone one else who helped make this programme possible and for supporting us and our participants on their educational journey into discovering the World of MedTech.

The Innovation Programme 2021/22 was organised by the Cambridge MedTech Foundation, Will Foster (5thyear MD/PhD student), Manuela Zimmermann (4th year PhD student in Biophysics), Rachel Boixadera (5thyear Clinical Medicine student) and Tharushi Wijesena (4th year Clinical Medicine Student).

‘I have benefitted substantially from participating in the programme; not only have I developed valuable understanding of MedTech entrepreneurship, I have gained a first-hand insight into the importance of inter-disciplinary collaboration and have built a strong support network of like-minded peers to continue this journey.’ — 2nd Year Medical Student

Interested in applying to our programme next year or getting involved in other ways?

Visit our website to find out more.


About the Innovation Programme

The Innovation Programme is a 14-week educational programme providing both an introduction to the landscape of medical device development and experience of interdisciplinary teamwork.

About the Cambridge MedTech Foundation

We are a student-run society at the University of Cambridge with the aim to educate, inspire and connect the next generation of healthcare innovators.