£500,000 of funding is available for technology companies who come up with digital support solutions for people who need to stay at home because of coronavirus.
The funding will be available to innovators who can find digital ways to support people who need help during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
The ‘Techforce19’ challenge aims to support those who need to stay at home for several weeks and need help. This could include people who need mental health support or who have social care needs.
Funding of up to £25,000 per company is available.
The programme is looking for digital solutions that can be launched in the next few weeks, and could include:
- providing remote social care – for example, by locating and matching qualified carers to those in need
- optimising the volunteer sector – for example, by developing tools to recruit, train and coordinate local volunteers into clinical and non-clinical workers
- improving mental health support – for example, by making it easier to discover and deliver mental health services and support
- any other solutions to ease pressures on services and people during this time
This technology will supplement existing support for those who may be most affected by staying at home for long periods of time.
The programme is being launched by NHSX and managed by PUBLIC, a GovTech venture firm. PUBLIC will not receive any payment for running this competition.
For more information on the programme and how to apply, visit techforce19.uk.
The government has strongly advised everyone to reduce social interaction to help minimise the spread of the virus, especially those aged 70 or over, people with underlying medical conditions or pregnant women.
Those considered most at risk of having serious complications from the virus, for instance people receiving treatment for cancer, have also been asked to stay at home for 12 weeks as part of efforts to shield them from the virus.