Changing the Way We Deliver Emergency Care

Challenge Background

There is an exciting opportunity to work with the Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust (WAST) and Health Boards within Wales to reduce the unprecedented demand on both ambulances and Urgent & Emergency Care services across Wales.  Our patients are waiting longer than they should for an ambulance response and once at hospital (Emergency Department (ED), can spend a considerable amount of time in the ambulance before handover to the ED clinical teams.

We would like to be able to transform the way urgent and emergency care is given, looking to support WAST’s strategic ambition to care for more patients in their own home or in a community setting, thus safely reducing the number of patients requiring conveyance to hospital.

There is an opportunity to enhance the WAST infrastructure to allow us to provide care closer to home.  WAST is a ‘super-connector’ across health and care settings with ambitious plans to transform their service delivery model to improve clinical outcomes, improve patient experience and alleviate ‘system pressure’ upon Urgent & Emergency Care services.  To do this, equipping our people with the right tools and technology is important to enable the ‘right care in the right place’.

Challenge details

We would like to invite industry to enable us to provide care closer to home.  Innovative solutions are sought to enhance one (or more) of the themes:

  • Improving capabilities in the pre-hospital setting that can enable patients to be cared for closer to home. This could include Point of Care Testing (e.g. blood tests with rapid results), wearable technology solutions and mobile scanning equipment; and
  • Use of technology to support patient care, enhance communication and improve patient safety during initial diagnosis or in cases of prolonged community waits for an ambulance or 111 response, or awaiting an urgent appointment at a place definitive care”.

We are looking for solutions that will provide a positive outcome, high-impact for the population of Wales.  In particular, demand for ambulance/Urgent and Emergency Care services is high for:

  • People that have fallen – patients that have been on the floor for a significant amount of time (long lies);
  • People experiencing respiratory problems – especially acute exacerbations of chronic conditions;
  • People experiencing chest pain – where the nature of the pain cannot currently be confirmed in the pre-hospital setting.

There are many diagnostic solutions on the market.  This challenge aims to bring solutions together to develop an ambulance sector solution for use in the pre-hospital environment.

We are looking to identify, develop and demonstrate technology and equipment that could:

  • Be suitable for mobile use (pre-hospital use);
  • Fit into the current infrastructure and be deployable across vehicle types;
  • Use artificial intelligence, augmented technology and or natural language processing to enhance current systems and processes;
  • Be of suitable for use across pre-hospital clinical professionals/response personnel;
  • Support appropriate use of ambulances by the community;
  • Building community resilience to support patients at home during an episode of urgent/emergency care need;
  • Enable decision making and care to be provided closer to home;
  • Support patients’ continued independent living;
  • Complement and encourage community support; and
  • Be sustainable and affordable for both the public sector and the patient.


Out of Scope:

  • Replacement of vehicles;
  • Integration to any national systems.


Challenge phases structure

Phase 1: Development – From a total of £225,000, we expect to fund up to 3 projects up to a value of £75,000 (inclusive of VAT) each.

Note: Only projects successful at phase 1 will be eligible to apply to phases 2 and 3.

Phase 2: Testing – This Phase will be to robustly test in a real-life environment up to 3 of the successful Phase 1 solutions from a total fund of up to £800,000.  We expect to fund up to 3 projects at up to £265,000 (inclusive of VAT) each.

In applying to this Phase 1 competition, you are entering into a competitive process. Any adoption and implementation of a solution from this competition would be subject to a separate, possible competitive, procurement exercise.  This competition does not cover the purchase of any solution although we will investigate and explore innovative procurement routes as part of this challenge, should a successful solution emerge.

The total funding available for the competition can change.  The funders have the right to:

  • adjust the provisional funding allocations between the phases;
  • apply a ‘portfolio’ approach; and
  • fund a Phase 3 to allow thorough more widespread testing of the developed solutions.


Key Dates table:

Phase 1 ActivityKey Dates **subject to change**
Open Date – Phase 131/01/2023
Briefing event23/02/2023
Close Date17/03/2023  12:00 noon
Applicants notified24/03/2023
Phase 1 Contracts awarded24/03/2023
FeedbackApril 2023
Projects Commence03/04/2023
Projects Complete19/06/2023
Phase 2 ActivityKey Dates  **subject to change**
Phase 2 applications to be reviewed and decision on company/companies to take forwardJune/July 2023
Feedback to unsuccessful applicantsJune/July 2023
Contracts signed and commencementJune/July 2023
Project closureApril 2024


Briefing Event

Please follow the link below and register your interest for the virtual Briefing Event held on Thursday 23rd February 2023. Changing the Way We Deliver Emergency Care: Briefing Event


Commercial plan notice

Please note if you are successful in Phase 1 and go through to Phase 2, you will need to provide a commercialisation plan/strategy as part of your contractual deliverables.


Further information

For more information on this competition, visit: Apply here

For any enquiries about this competition e-mail:

This competition has ended.