Ontario Centres of Excellence: Health Technologies Fund – Call for Expressions of Interest
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The Health Technologies Fund (HTF) supports the development of made-in-Ontario health technologies by accelerating evaluation, procurement, adoption and diffusion in the Ontario health system. The fund is part of the Office of the Chief Health Innovation Strategist’s mandate to strengthen Ontario’s innovation ecosystem.
The HTF fosters partnerships between publicly-funded healthcare service providers, patients, academia and industry to drive collaboration that improves patient outcomes, adds value to the health system and creates jobs in Ontario.
Through the fund, the Office of the Chief Health Innovation Strategist identifies health priorities to focus innovation to address specific health outcomes. The health priority area for the HTF is Better Care Closer to Home, which supports technologies that deliver better coordinated and integrated care in the home and community.
OCE is accepting Expressions of Interest (EOIs) for projects until June 21, 2017. Projects must be led by a publicly-funded healthcare service provider and include a Problem Statement that supports Pre-Market Evaluation or Early Adoption of an innovative technology.
A. How the Program Works
The HTF will support Health Innovation Teams (HITs) in Pre-Market Evaluation and Early Adoption of innovative technologies in healthcare settings across Ontario. HITs are interdisciplinary and collaborative teams made up of:
- Applicant: One or more provider(s) of publicly funded healthcare services. Eligible healthcaresystem applicants include (but are not limited to) family health teams, community care providers, long-term-care homes, Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs) and hospitals. The healthcare service provider defines the problem statement and commits to providing the healthcaresetting in which the innovative technology will be evaluated, including patient engagement, clinicians and operations support, and procurement expertise.
- Technology partner (mandatory): An Ontario-based, for-profit health technology business providing an innovative solution to the problem statement. Partners may be of any size or stage (start-up, small- to medium-sized enterprise, and multinational enterprise) with a research and development, and/or manufacturing presence in Ontario.
- Other project contributors (strongly recommended): Academic researchers with expertise in technology adoption and diffusion, design and implementation, or health economics.
HITs may apply for funding to support (1) Pre-Market Evaluation or (2) Early Adoption projects. Please note that the Prototype stream that was available in the previous round of applications is no longer available.
1. Pre-Market Evaluation
Pre-Market Evaluation projects involve a HIT collaborating to implement a validated technology in a healthcare setting in order to understand the conditions necessary for successful implementation, and to develop evidence to support broader uptake of the technology. Projects must align with the theme of Better Care Closer to Home and the technologies must have obtained required regulatory approvals and received initial user feedback.
Activities may include identifying changes required to clinical workflow to successfully integrate the technology, generating evidence to support future procurement and adoption, and developing an adoption plan.
Exclusions: Activities not supported include clinical trials to assess the safety or efficacy of the technology, and all activities outside of the province of Ontario.
Outputs: Upon completion of a Pre-Market Evaluation project, HITs should have identified clinical workflow changes and other changes needed to effectively integrate the technology into the healthcaresetting, generated evidence that supports further adoption (e.g. an economic analysis that examines the cost effectiveness of the technology and potential value to the health system), and an adoption plan for value-based procurement and adoption of the technology in Ontario.
2. Early Adoption
The Early Adoption stream supports validated, market-ready technologies that have been successfully implemented in one or more healthcare settings. Early Adoption projects involve a HIT collaborating to perform an additional implementation (and preferably multiple implementations) of the technology (in one or more healthcare settings) in order to evaluate the technology across multiple implementations, to generate further evidence to support value-based procurement and wide-scale adoption, and to develop an adoption plan.
Early Adoption projects must align with the theme of Better Care Closer to Home, and the technologies must have obtained required regulatory approvals and received initial user feedback. Furthermore, the technology must have supporting institutional use case data, including clinical and economic evidence of value.
Activities may include: identifying changes required to clinical workflow to successfully integrate the technology, knowledge translation and user training, establishing new evidence to facilitate integration into the broader health system (e.g., across multiple LHINs), developing further clinical or economic evidence, developing an adoption plan, and developing an value-based procurement plan for participating healthcare providers.
Exclusions: Activities not supported include clinical trials to assess the safety or efficacy of the technology, and all activities outside of the province of Ontario.
Outputs: Upon completion of an Early Adoption project, HITs should have identified clinical workflow changes and other changes needed for successful implementation, generated sufficient evidence to support wider adoption, and developed a plan for wider-scale procurement and adoption of the technology in Ontario.
B. How Funding Works
- HTF funds for both the Pre-Market Evaluation and Early Adoption projects will support up to 50 per cent of eligible project cash costs up to a maximum amount of $500,000 for a term of up to two years
- Applicants/Project Contributors must contribute the remaining 50 per cent of eligible project cash costs as a minimum requirement.
- Funding for the projects will be released to the Applicant Organization (healthcare provider) that will be responsible for reimbursing their project partner(s).
- Flow of Funds: Funding for the project will be released to the Applicant Organization (healthcareservice provider) that will be responsible for reimbursing their project partner(s). Upon project activation, 25 per cent of funding will be released. Further payments will be reimbursed upon receipt and approval of expenditure reports.
C. Eligibility Criteria
I) Health Innovation Teams (HITs)
II) Project Eligibility
III) Eligible Use of Funds
I) Health Innovation Teams (HITs):
- All proposals MUST be from HITs composed of:
- Applicant: Provider of publicly funded healthcare services
- At least one technology partner (mandatory): For-profit technology company with an R&D and/or manufacturing presence in Ontario
- Other Project Contributors (strongly recommended): Academic researcher(s) with expertise in technology adoption and diffusion, evaluation, design and implementation, or health economics
- The health service provider is designated as the lead applicant and commits to providing the clinical setting in which the innovative technology will be evaluated, including clinician and operations support, procurement specialists, and patients.
- Applicants and their partner(s) MUST be in good financial and reporting standing with OCE.
- Participants will agree to provide project metrics and progress reports to OCE.
II) Project Eligibility:
- Projects in all streams MUST be focused on addressing a “Problem Statement” identified by the healthcare service provider. “Problem Statements” must align with the current theme of the HTF and/or health system priorities endorsed by the Office of the Chief Health Innovation Strategist (OCHIS) and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
- Pre-Market Evaluation projects: technologies MUST have obtained all required regulatory approvals, received initial user validation, and be ready to be tested with healthcare service providers.
- Early Adoption projects: technologies MUST have obtained all required regulatory approvals and be market-ready. Furthermore, technologies must have been successfully implemented at least once in one or more healthcare settings, and MUST have supporting institutional use case data, including clinical and economic evidence of value.
- For the purposes of this program, the following activities and technologies are not supported:
- Technology development (only minor updates for integration purposes are eligible)
- Evaluation, research, and clinical trials of medicines or vaccines
- Clinical trials to assess the safety or efficacy of the technology.
- Activities that do not align with the overall theme of the program include:
- All activities outside of the province of Ontario.
- Potential economic benefit to the technology company resulting from an HTF project should be realized in Ontario (e.g., job creation, incremental revenue, follow-on financing).
III) Eligible Use of Funds:
Refer to the Eligible Expenses document for full details.
D. Project Reporting Requirements
I) Interim Progress and Claim Report(s):
- Interim report(s), including progress, proof of expenditures, and a financial attestation, will be required at the nine-month and, if applicable, 18-month marks of the project. The applicant organization will receive notification and a link from OCE’s AccessOCE system to submit the report. The report must be received and approved by OCE prior to release of funds for eligible claims.
- Note: Applicants MUST retain all proof of purchases, receipts, and other relevant documentation relating to eligible expenses. These should be included in the Interim Progress and Claim Report.
II) Final Results and Claim Report(s):
- A final report, including progress, proof of expenditures, and a financial attestation, will be required at the end of the project. Forty-five days prior to the scheduled completion date, the Applicant will receive an email notification of the project end date from the AccessOCE system, with a link to the Final Progress and Claim Report should the Applicant wish to begin entering data.
- If a project extension is required, the Applicant MUST request it using the Project Administration tab in their AccessOCE project file.
- On the scheduled project completion date, the Applicant will receive another notification and a link to complete the Final Project Progress and Claim Report from OCE’s AccessOCE system.
- All required final reports by all Applicants MUST be submitted within 30 days of project completion in order to be reimbursed for eligible expenses and maintain good financial standing with OCE.
- If early reporting is required, the Applicant MAY request it by emailing OCE Project Administration, firstname.lastname@example.org.
III) Metrics Survey:
- If the project continues past a fiscal year end (March 31), the applicant and industry partner(s) will be required to complete an annual metrics survey each April, for the part of the project that has been completed since the previous March 31. This annual report is mandatory for OCE to fulfil its contract with the Government of Ontario. Required metrics reports from all partners MUST be submitted in order to maintain good financial standing with OCE.
E. How to Apply
The application is a two-step process:
- Expressions of Interest (EOI)
- Full proposal (invitation only)
Applicants can initiate an online application by working with an OCE:
- Business Development Manager or
- Innovation Procurement Manager
Once an application is initiated, applicants MUST complete all requisite information requested in the online application module and upload a completed EOI form to the module. Applications MUST be initiated at least one week in advance of the submission deadline. Applications initiated less than a week in advance of the submission deadline may not have sufficient time for a Business Development Manager to support the application.
Please complete all the information in the EOI template to ensure:
- The proposal’s font and format are maintained
- The EOI document is submitted through the OCE online application system and uploaded as an attachment (PDF format accepted)
- Upon review of your EOI, OCE may request additional information or clarification to determine project eligibility. You will be notified via email and asked to follow up accordingly. This documentation will be appended to the submission.
A limited number of EOIs will be invited to submit a full proposal, which will include the submission requirements (Full Proposal template, comprehensive Milestones Table, budget & justification and follow-up to any of the EOI questions).
Successful applicants and their partners MUST execute OCE’s standard Funding Agreement, including a completed Schedule D, Intellectual Property Term Sheet, within 30 days of notification of award. A copy of the Funding Agreement can be downloaded for your reference. Please do not fill out this form; a copy of the agreement will be generated through our online management system and sent to you upon approval of your project.
The Health Technologies Fund is a competitive program with limited funding. All eligible applications are assessed against program objectives and assessment criteria.
F. Evaluation and Assessment
EOIs will be reviewed and ranked by OCE and the Office of the Chief Health Innovation Strategist (OCHIS), and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC), highly ranked EOIs will be invited to submit full applications.
Full applications are internally reviewed for completeness, eligibility and use of funds prior to evaluation by an External Review Panel. Applications will be reviewed by an External Review Panel of domain experts against program objectives and assessment criteria. Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) will be completed by the panel members prior to the review of the proposals. The final funding decision is made by OCE.
|Round 2 – Intake Opens||May 9,2017|
|HTF Program Update Information Webinar||May 30, 2017, 10:00 A.M. – 11:00 A.M.|
|Expression of Interest (EOI) Deadline||June 21, 2017 by 2:00 P.M. ET|
|Invitation to Submit a Full Application||July 14, 2017|
|Full Application Development Workshop||July 2017|
|Full Application Deadline||August 21 by 2:00 P.M. ET|
|External Review Panel (ERP) Meeting||September 2017|
|Award Notification to Applicants||September 29, 2017|
|Public Announcement of Results||October 2017|
Please review OCE’s Program FAQ.
The following information may provide insight in relation to the key priority areas of the province of Ontario as identified by government stakeholders.
- Office of the Chief Health Innovation Strategist
- The Catalyst: Towards An Ontario Health Innovation Strategy, Ontario Health Innovation Council Report, 2016
- Patients First: A Roadmap to Strengthen Home and Community Care, Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, 2015
K. Contact Information
For inquiries specifically related to eligibility, contracting, and funding disbursements, please contact:
Jennifer Moles, Innovation Procurement Manager
For general inquiries about how to apply, online application system and application, please contact the Application Support Team at (416) 861-1092 x2400 or email@example.com.
HTF Business Development Managers:
Eastern and Northern Ontario:
firstname.lastname@example.org | (416) 978-5557
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