Accelerating the Translation of MedTech Research
June 21, 2022

Accelerating the Translation of MedTech Research

Your Journey

The name “Te Tītoki Mataora” was gifted by Matua Te Wharekōtua Turuwhenua (Ngāti Tūhoe) following kōrero with Jason Turuwhenua (Ngāti Tūhoe, Ngāti Porou) and the wider whānau. Jason is the Auckland Bioengineering Institute’s Associate Director Māori.

Te Tītoki Mataora (TTM) Medtech Research Translator, is a national multi-faceted initiative focused on growing Aotearoa New Zealand’s deep tech sector by supporting research translation that aims to address New Zealand’s healthcare needs. It consists of two key programmes: the Research Accelerator Programme and the HealthTech Capability Programme.

TTM is supported by the Consortium for Medical Devices Technologies (CMDT), which is  a partnership between AUT, the Universities of Auckland, Canterbury and Otago, Victoria University of Wellington, and Callaghan Innovation. It is hosted by the University of Auckland and by the Auckland Bioengineering Institute. The TTM is a $10M programme over 3 years co-funded by MBIE and the University of Auckland, with in-kind contributions from the CMDT partnership and its associates, Ara Manawa and i3 (the innovation arms of Auckland and North Shore Hospitals respectively).

Research Acceleration Programme

The Research Acceleration Programme (RAP), funded by MBIE, is a contestable fund to develop new opportunities from New Zealand’s health-related research. This is targeted towards the very early stages of proof of concept and the first steps into human applications, allowing research teams to de-risk ideas before seeking further support. RAP funding is available to researchers from universities and research institutes, clinicians and allied healthcare providers. There are three stages to the RAP funding as outlined here.

  1. Collaboration and ideation. 
  2. Concept seeding to identify ideas with the potential to become viable clinical applications and commercial opportunities.
  3. Acceleration fund to support teams refine their technologies once proof of concept has been established.

Healthtech Capability Programme

The Healthtech Capability Programme (HTCP), funded by the University of Auckland with contributions from the CMDT partnership, helps develop the foundations for research translation in New Zealand and focuses on building skills that are important to researchers and startups of the future. The programme comprises 5 modules of work that deliver strategic activities that progress that particular area of capability. 

The HTCP modules are available to the research and clinical communities but are open to companies as well, in particular startups. Companies are welcome to participate alongside our research community but in some cases a small fee might be charged. 

These modules and their key initiatives include the following:

Mātauranga Māori

Improving the capacity for researchers to work with Māori communities and supporting student capability. Some current initiatives to support this vision are:

  • Cultural competency workshops for researchers. 
  • Hauora experience for Bachelor of Nursing Māori students. 
  • Manaaki sessions for researchers and clinicians for safe discussions around understandings and experiences of Te Tiriti. 
  • One-on-one assistance for research groups wanting to work with Māori.

Pacific Engagement

Increasing the engagement between Pacific communities and the Aotearoa NZ healthtech sector. The initiatives present initiatives to grow the connectivity to the Pacific communities are:

  • Cultural responsiveness workshops for researchers. 
  • School outreach programmes.
  • Community showcase “TIKI” tours.

Future Research Leaders

Targeted at early and mid-career researchers and clinicians in healthtech to create effective collaboration and engagement in a nationwide network. The initiatives that are running at present are:

  • Future leaders workshop to provide practical advice for transdisciplinary collaboration and how to establish new research collaborations. 
  • Māori cultural competency workshops to develop and strengthen Māori cultural competency in research.
  • Speaker series to provide practical advice and an opportunity to meet virtually on a regular basis. 

Clinical Translation

Supporting the development of medical devices and digital health technologies by facilitating excellent clinical trials and upskilling of the workforce. The two main initiatives that have been set up to support the ecosystem are:

  • Expert advisory group available to anyone nationwide who needs connecting to an expert on topics such as clinical trial design and ethics or in a particular clinical field. 
  • Medtech e-health forum for nationwide collaboration and connection aimed at clinicians interested in health technology and innovations. There is also an open group for anyone interested, not just clinicians. 

Commercial Translation

Building capability for taking health technology research into the commercial arena and accelerating commercial opportunities. Our four anchoring initiatives are:

  • Bridging research and business programme for research groups requiring assistance with their market assessment/validation.
  • Greenlight Guru license for quality management of your medical device. We have a limited number of seats available to research groups and for a small fee, startups. 
  • Monthly speaker series with experts on various topics relating to commercialisation of technology to provide the community with the opportunity to ask their burning questions. 
  • Quality and regulatory workshops specific to medtech that are also supported by one-on-one assistance from our experts.  

To learn more about Te Tītoki Mataora and the many opportunities available, you can either check out the CMDT website or attend Healthtech Week 2022 where you will have the opportunity to talk to each of our programme and module leads.

Download PDF
Read on External Site