Design Technologies - South Africa Workshop

By: Lucinda Dargavel Date: 21/06/2018

Embracing new design technologies: enabling equitable access to health – South Africa Workshop

Bloemfontein, South Africa 12th - 16th November, 2018

From patient-specific implants to high-tech rehabilitation aids, digital design technologies are revolutionising healthcare. Many case studies and published papers illustrate how technologies such as 3d scanning, computer aided design, 3d printing & tele-medicine can be used to create patient specific devices that both perform well and look great.

However, despite enthusiastic press coverage and high levels of academic interest, there are numerous barriers that prevent healthcare systems from routinely using these methods.

PDR's Surgical & Prosthetic Design team has teamed up with CRPM (Centre for Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing) in South Africa to carefully consider these barriers and thanks to funding from the Newton Fund*, PDR and CRPM are able to bring experts and early career researchers from multiple disciplines together in a workshop.

The intention of this 4 day workshop is to develop a consensus on how digital design technologies for patient specific surgical implants, prosthetics, orthotics and rehabilitation devices can be implemented within South African, and UK healthcare systems.

This will help to identify the most effective ways to direct future research and will:

• Encourage participants to share experiences of technologies and methods for the development of patient specific devices.

• Discuss the wider issues that affect technology adoption.

• Develop project ideas and future collaborations.

• Identify opportunities for the development of training packages in the UK and South Africa.

The workshop will bring together experts from diverse disciplines including: user-centred design, social science, the medical arena, industrial/product design and engineering and technology. Utilising design research methods, such as the double diamond, will ensure that the needs of all stakeholders are considered.

*On 5 December 2013 the UK Chancellor announced the creation of an Emerging Powers Research and Innovation Fund. The Newton Fund was officially launched in 2014 and originally consisted of £75 million each year for 5 years.

During the 2015 UK Spending Review it was agreed to extend and expand the Fund. The Newton Fund was extended from 2019 to 2021 and expanded by doubling the £75 million investment to £150 million per year by 2021, leading to a £735 million UK investment, with partner countries providing matched resources within the Fund. The Fund is managed by the UK’s Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

The Fund forms part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment and its primary focus is to develop partner countries research and innovation capacity for long-term sustainable growth. Through the Newton Fund, the UK uses its strength in research and innovation to promote economic development and social welfare of partner countries. It provides opportunities to researchers for collaboration with the Newton Fund countries.

The Newton Fund covers activities in three categories:

  • People: increasing capacity for science and innovation in partner countries.

  • Research: research collaborations on development topics.

  • Translation: creating collaborative solutions to development challenges and
    strengthening innovation systems.