New £1.9m support project aims to inspire Mersey health entrepreneurs

Financed by the European Regional Development Fund, the LCR Health Matters programme will help firms take their ideas from conception to market. Tony McDonough reports

LCR Health Matters
Dr Liz Mear, chief executive, the Innovation Agency, Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram Metro Mayor and Mark Basnett from the LEP. Picture by Gareth Jones


A new £1.9m programme aims to help entrepreneurs in Liverpool city region’s life sciences sector take their ideas from conception to market.

Financed by the European Regional Development Fund, the LCR Health Matters programme offers businesses the opportunity to find answers to problems, receive guidance on funding opportunities while providing real-world validation of products and services.

Health and life sciences is one of the biggest and fastest-growing sectors in the world and the aim of the project is to inspire businesses in the city region to become market leaders in health, well-being and care.

Over the three years of its delivery, the programme aims to provide support for 70 businesses in the Liverpool city region. To be eligible, businesses must be looking to develop products or services within the health and care sectors and be based in Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens, Halton, Knowsley and Wirral.

A launch event was held at Liverpool John Moores University’s Redmond’s Building and more than 80 attendees heard from Dr Liz Mear, chief executive at programme partner the Innovation Agency, and Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram.

Dr Mear said: “Building on earlier programmes, LCR Health Matters will support innovative Liverpool city region businesses capable of moving into, or growing within, the health and care sectors with new or existing services or products.

“LCR Health Matters will fill gaps in earlier programmes by providing mechanisms to validate the benefits of an innovation in a practical (real-world) setting, a key activity to support health system uptake. The programme will also support the region’s ambitions to address the Industrial Strategy’s Grand Challenges and wider activities.”

The Health Innovation Exchange programme is delivered through a partnership between Liverpool John Moores University, the Innovation Agency (the Academic Health Science Network for the North West Coast) and Liverpool City Region LEP.

Mr Rotheram added: “The health and life sciences sector is a major source of world-leading innovation in our city region.  This programme will help build on our existing strengths by supporting local businesses to become market leaders.”

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