The HealthFactory is a regional center for facilitating innovative projects combining technology with care, cure, prevention.
The GezondheidFabriek (HealthFactory), first established in 2014, kicked off seriously in 2015. HF aims to contribute to a healthy and social society by stimulating and facilitating collaboration and innovation projects, bringing together health and care providers, citizens, entrepreneurs, researchers, and government. Only by really working together can we tackle today’s complex challenges in the area of health, wellbeing and living. Challenges concern e.g. the connection between science and industry, regulations and standards, ethical, security and privacy issues, complex financing structure and viable business models, and the role of government in innovation. Apart from promoting collaboration, HF’s hallmarks are: person-centric, demand-driven and open innovation.
The HF is a not-for-profit, open work and learning environment at the interface of technological innovation, big data value creation and social innovation.
The HF has an (inter)national scope, and its partner network is not regional, limited to the Province of Flevoland or Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. It currently (2016) has a pipeline of ca. 25 projects, varying from European to local, from product to service to system/ process innovations and many more.
To set up the actual physical facility (excluding the development of projects), a project budget of ca. €2.9M was made available by the so called Investment Fund Flevoland Almere, the City of Almere plus private partners (industry 42%/ government 58%).
Evidence of success
HF has positioned itself successfully as the preferred local partner/vehicle, clustering ehealth innovation projects. eHealth is a new market, with few products being actually implemented. HF certainly offers partners the opportunity to launch a spin off or generate a license. HF's evidence of succes is the number of projects that are being carried out and facilitated bij HF. That is their role. Notable products are the co-development of an autonomous wheelchair, Zorgbel and MyWepp.
Complexity of collaborating in the area of health: different/ contradicting ambitions, different areas of expertise, lack of time, money.
Funding to facilitate innovation projects professionally.
Potential for learning or transfer
HF is a beautifull example of how to make the quadruple helix collaborate. Many have come to learn from the HF model and everybody is welcome to come visit. HF proves how a physical center where hardware, sorftware and "orgware" can be developed and co-created between educational institutions, end-users, businesses and governmental institutions should work.
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