i4i Challenge Awards Call 12

Key Features

Apply for UK grant funding from the NIHR i4i Challenge Awards, for the assessment of medtech innovations in healthcare settings.

Programme:     NIHR

Award:     No upper funding limit

Opens: 14th Apr 2021

Closes: 10th Jun 2021

! This scheme is now closed


The i4i Challenge award supports innovations by addressing the translational gap between the clinical evaluation of technologies and their adoption by funding the assessment of MedTech innovations in real-world healthcare settings.

The expected output is a disruptive medical device or in vitro diagnostic test that can offer improved outcomes for NHS patients.

Award specifications:

  • Applications are invited from SMEs, NHS Trusts, NHS service providers or Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). A minimum of two organisations must be involved, and the proposal must include at least one collaborator from an NHS Trust or NHS Service Provider.
  • Lead applicants must be based in England.
  • Projects may last up to 3 years but could be considerably shorter, or if a strong case is made, may last up to 5 years (for example if extended patient follow-up is required to demonstrate improved outcomes).  Timelines will need to be commensurate with the requirements of the project and the delivery of outputs, in terms of potential healthcare uptake and patient benefit.
  • There is no upper funding limit, but costs must be fully justified.

Proposal specifications:

  • Proposals must describe implementation evaluation in NHS settings, and must demonstrate clear customer and stakeholder engagement and competitor analysis.
  • Projects must be supported by a strong health economic case emphasising the clinical utility of the new technology.
  • Teams are expected to have the appropriate skills for the delivery of the projects. Applications must take into account implementation and stakeholder management activities associated with the project besides clinical and technical aspects, and the team proposed will have to demonstrate the relevant expertise in all these areas.
  • Proposals must include a realistic risk-mitigation strategy.

Additional Information:

Applications should focus on CE marked products. However, nearly CE marked products will be considered where evidence can be shown that the technical documentation has been submitted for Notified Body assessment, and whereby all of the mandatory testing has been completed.

For self-assessed products (Class I & Class A) we expect a CE mark to have been obtained.

Digital health technologies that are not regulated as medical devices but are going to be integrated into the NHS will also be eligible, as long as reasonable proof of safety and efficacy is provided.

Read the full scope information on the NIHR website.

Key Eligibility Criteria:

  • Applicants from SMEs, NHS service providers or Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are invited to apply for this funding stream.
  • A minimum of two organisations must be involved and at least one of the collaborators must be from an NHS Service Provider (e.g. an NHS Trust).
  • Technologies must have demonstrated safety and efficacy and must have obtained or be in the process of obtaining CE marking.
  • Project timelines can vary based on the required evidence for potential healthcare uptake and patient benefit. They may last up to 3 years, but if a longer period is needed to demonstrate long-term outcomes and a strong case is made, a duration of up to 5 years will be considered.
  • Lead applicants must be based in England.