Following our Innovation Pathway

What we do

Our tried-and-tested ‘Innovation Pathway’ is a systematic approach, which informs our current partnerships and guides potential future collaborations. It drives efficiency and maximises in IVD development opportunities for the benefit of patients.

1. Identify an unmet need or innovation

Observe an unmet diagnostic need or identify an idea for an innovation that addresses an unmet diagnostic need. Unmet needs can be identified by anyone, regardless of their profession.

2. Submit an Expression of Interest

Complete our Expression of Interest form to let us know about an unmet need, idea for innovation, or early stage innovation. Let us know as much as possible about how you want to work with us. Please read our guidance carefully before submitting an Expression of Interest to ensure it is within remit.

3. Validate

We will:

  • Speak to other people in similar situations to see if they have the same unmet need
  • Review and monitor known unmet needs to identify potential trends
  • Conduct scoping exercises to find out if an existing innovation already addresses the unmet need
  • Engage with stakeholders and end users (e.g. clinical teams, NHS commissioners, patients, carers, general public) to see if they think the innovation is a good idea
  • Conduct preliminary searches to see if there is any protection, such as intellectual property, that may prevent the innovation from being developed


If there is a clear need for innovation, we can support the unmet need or innovation as a project. This is likely to include:

  • Establishing a project team
  • Applying for funding
  • Clinical evaluation
  • Health economic evaluation
  • Assessing IP and governance needs


In some circumstances, one of our partner organisations may be better equipped to progress the innovation. For example, if a product is almost ready for NHS adoption, one of the Academic Health Science Networks may be better placed to help.