The Scottish Digital Health and Care Landscape

By Professor George Crooks OBE, Chief Executive at Digital Health & Care Institute.

Scotland is recognised as one of the global leaders in the development of digital health and care. The digital technology sector is the fastest growing economic sector in Scotland with digital health the fastest growing life sciences sector.

The Digital Health & Care Institute (DHI) was established five years ago as Scotland’s national innovation centre for to address the major challenges facing the delivery of health and care, while at the same time creating opportunities for economic growth across Scotland.

With a population of around 5.4 million people, Scotland, has always had a reputation as being a hot house for innovation and this continues to this day. DHI brings together citizens, academics, policy makers and industry along with those tasked with the delivery of health and care services across Scotland, to propose, design, develop, test and deploy digital tools and services that will not only benefit the people of Scotland but can be exported across the UK, Europe and round the world.

Over the past 5 years DHI has successfully developed a clear understanding of what it takes to not only develop health and care technologies but to secure a clear route to adoption across our health and care system.

By focusing on technology, service and business innovation, DHI offers a unique place where Scottish businesses as well as those from further afield can come to test and refine their products in a safe and secure environment.

Scotland is facing the same challenges that are being experienced by health and care systems around the world. The population is getting older, there are increasing number of people with one or more long term conditions like diabetes, heart disease or lung diseases. The geography of Scotland, with its large urban centres in the central belt of the country and its remote, rural and island communities means that Scotland can replicate the majority of geographical challenges facing the provision of health care around the world.

The NHS in Scotland has been recognised internationally as delivering high quality pioneering health services and it’s five medical schools and its universities are recognised as the producers of high-quality medical research. Bringing all these things together DHI can create varied opportunities to test and refine digital health and care solutions that are fit for the future.

Scotland is open for business and always seeking partners who are looking to develop safe, effective and sustainable services that can be designed in and deployed across Scotland and can then be shared around the world.

About Professor George Crooks OBE, CEO at Digital Health & Care Institute

Professor George Crooks is the Chief Executive of the Digital Health & Care Institute, Scotland’s national innovation centre for digital health and care. He leads an organisation that is tasked with delivering innovation in digital health and care that will help Scotland’s people to live longer, healthier lives and create new jobs for the economy. He was previously the Medical Director for NHS 24 and Director of the Scottish Centre for Telehealth & Telecare. George was a General Medical Practitioner for 23 years in Aberdeen latterly combining that role as Director of Primary Care for Grampian. George is on the Board of the European Connected Health Alliance. He is currently a Board member and past president of the European Health Telematics Association. He is also an adjunct Professor of Telehealth at the University of Southern Denmark. George was awarded an OBE in the Queen's New Year Honours List 2011 for services to healthcare.

With thanks to Professor George Crooks OBE and everyone at Digital Health & Care Institute.

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