Published on January 31, 2022
NAIT’s ability to contribute to health and medical innovation has received a boost, thanks to a $1.27M grant from Alberta Innovates as part of the Health Innovation Platform Partnerships program.
Companies with newly developed health and medical products and technologies that are experiencing difficulties accessing clinical healthcare settings to test their innovations can now access NAIT’s world-class healthcare simulation facility, the Centre for Advanced Medical Simulation (CAMS), to test their products.
As the only centre of its kind in Canada, CAMS will be able to bridge this gap and serve as a fully immersive test facility for health and medical companies to trial their newly developed technologies in real time.
Currently, simulation services for product testing are predominantly in the U.S., and access to Canadian clinical settings has been impacted by COVID-19, creating a bottleneck for companies needing to test their innovations.
The immersive simulation spaces can be set up to replicate clinical settings such as hospital wards, emergency and operating rooms, and field settings such as vehicle or workplace accidents.
Healthcare professionals from NAIT’s School of Health and Life Sciences and experts from the polytechnic’s applied research area will work with companies to create simulations to test their products and technologies in real-life scenarios, as well as offer their expertise to help the companies improve their products.
The recent grant from Alberta Innovates is the second round of funding the government agency has provided for this project. The initial $200,000 grant allowed NAIT to conduct market research and create a proof of concept, which was tested by three Alberta medical companies.
The project team will now focus their efforts on helping local companies test products for commercialization, developing training materials for the products, and expanding NAIT’s reach to companies across Alberta and Canada.
NAIT’s project is one of three to receive funding through Alberta Innovates’ Health Innovation Platform Partnership’s program, announced earlier today.
Since 2016, CAMS has provided health and life sciences students with a state-of-the-art training facility for practical clinical and field situations.
“Our investment will allow innovators and entrepreneurs to test their simulation technologies using NAIT’s world-class facility, while accessing world-class expertise and support to help accelerate their great ideas to market. We look forward to seeing the successful projects that flow through this unique program.” - Raja Mita, Executive Director, Health Innovation, Alberta Innovates
“Rigorous product testing and validation is necessary when developing new health and medical innovations and technologies before they hit the market to ensure safe treatment and patient care. By providing simulation services to these innovators, NAIT is helping decrease the bottleneck companies are currently faced with at the testing stage and adding value to our health ecosystem in ways that didn’t exist before.” - Kerri Oshust, Director, Centre for Advanced Medical Simulation.
“The Centre for Advanced Medical Simulation has been an asset to NAIT as an immersive training and teaching space for our health and life sciences students. The real-life clinical settings provided in the simulation centre prepares our students to enter their careers with valuable hands-on skills. To be able to extend these services to medical companies wanting to bring their innovations to fruition is an exciting opportunity for NAIT to contribute to the healthcare and medical fields in new ways.” - Denise MacIver, Dean, School of Health and Life Sciences
“The Centre for Advanced Medical Simulation’s Innovation Platform project is an excellent example of how NAIT is integrating expertise from our academic and applied research areas, to provide a service to external companies and industry partners that will help improve patient care and treatments. Serving Alberta’s industry with this integrated approach is crucial to our polytechnic mandate, and we appreciate the strong support from Alberta Innovates.” - Olle Lagerquist, Associate Vice-President, Industry Solutions
The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) is a leading Canadian polytechnic, delivering education in science, technology and the environment; business; health and skilled trades. With over 34,000 credit and non-credit students and a 98 per cent employer satisfaction rate, NAIT grads help fuel the economic engine of the province. NAIT also contributes to Alberta's prosperity by helping businesses and communities become more competitive through industry-driven research and corporate training. Recognized as one of Alberta's top employers, NAIT provides outstanding returns on investment for its graduates, industry partners, the provincial government and the people of Alberta.
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