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New affiliation to deliver research and innovation opportunities

29 November 2021

Initiatives to improve the health and well-being of people in Wales are in progress thanks to a new collaboration between Hywel Dda University Health Board (UHB) and The Welsh Wound Innovation Centre (WWIC).

A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the organisations, which will see innovative solutions being developed to promote opportunities across wound care technology research, which will further strengthen the health of patients in Wales.

There are 2.2 million people across the UK with chronic wounds, the management of which is estimated to cost the NHS £5.3 billion per year. Many patients (87%) are cared for in the community by district nurses supported by a unique network of over 748 specialist-tissue viability nurses. Major global advanced wound-care companies select Wales as their preferred location, due in part to our world-class clinical-research infrastructure and WWIC’s profile in the wound domain.

The health board’s role will be delivered by the Tritech Institute, which has been established by Hywel Dda UHB to provide specific services in innovative healthcare solutions. Tritech supports the development of healthcare solutions on a local, national and global level, offering designers and manufacturers a single point of access to the NHS through a collaborative and agile approach.

WWIC is the first national wound healing centre world-wide and is the flagship facility for clinical innovation in Wales. It has pioneered and supported the development and testing of novel therapies and diagnostics as well as led several service improvement and transformation programmes.  WWIC is grounded in supporting education and training programmes at a local, national, and international level and the team are prolific in disseminating and advancing clinical practice through its active publication and presentation profile as well as its collaborations.

Prof. Chris Hopkins, Scientific lead and head of Tritech, said: “The mission, vision and values of TriTech are aligned with those of the WWIC, and this partnership is one of equals that focusses entirely on contributing and improving the health and well-being of people in Wales.”

Maureen Fallon, chief operating officer of WWIC, said: “building on each organisation’s individual and collective strengths, we consider that this collaborative relationship between WWIC and Tritech will add value for people living with and those providing treatment for people with wounds locally, nationally and internationally.”