Dotforge Health

We bring together key partners in digital health to invest in companies focused on health data.


The trend in digital health is towards data. The hardware devices, from iPhone pedometers to diagnostic and monitoring devices, all create data.

Big Data capabilities will allow this data to be combined and analysed in ways not yet understood. This will become a major resource for public health bodies, corporations, and hospitals, and as such is considered to be a high growth sector for tech investors in the near future.

Our accelerator is located in Leeds, next to the NHS HS CIC, one of the largest health data resources in the world. The aim is to accelerate startups that are working in digital health, with a focus on data, by partnering with leading data experts, data providers and users, located next to the NHS Spine. We hope to fast track the development of the startups, and also produce startups that address the specific needs of the market, namely the NHS, health companies, and corporates working to promote health and wellbeing.


The National Information Board has tied NHS IT more closely to NHS policy, finance and regulation in a framework for action. Digital technology plays a key role in all three elements in the 5YfV: public health, quality of care, efficiency. There is now a concerted push to achieve more integrated models of care based on interoperable and flexible digital resources, including integrated patient records and the use of data by patients and health sector professionals. Digital Health Data is at the heart of digital health startups and innovation.

Why a health accelerator?

An accelerator is a structured, time limited program to support startups and provides both mentoring and investment, along with structured networking.

Accelerators become a focus for activity in the ecosystem, as they attract mentors, investors, and related businesses around defined activities, and can interface with universities to facilitate knowledge transfer between academics and startups. In that respect they can act as a unifying catalyst in a region, bringing together all the key stakeholders around an intensive innovation agenda.

Dotforge Health

Primarily, the accelerator will support early stage companies that use hardware and software, along with data, to either:

  • Help patients by raising awareness and support self-monitoring of their condition, and prevent the need for major medical interventions;
  • Help doctors / insurers manage information and communicate with patients;
  • Provide early stage screening processes to reduce impact on health service.

Digital Health is creating disruption in the healthcare sector. It is creating a new layer of non-clinical devices that allow patients to monitor conditions, and offer therapeutic solutions outside of hospitals, and alongside physicians. Many of these devices act as screening tools, introducing a step prior to clinical diagnosis that does not require a clinician’s intervention. This can help prevent expensive interventions later by alerting people early on of potential problems. It can also reduce the pressure on clinicians and hospitals, by enabling patients to manage conditions and screen prior to reference to a clinician.

The programme will support the following activity:

  • Attract applications from around the world and select companies, with sponsors and investors, which offer solutions to identified issues and commissioning priorities;
  • Identify appropriate health professional or academic partnerships to support the development of the product;
  • Work with mentors drawn from the programme’s sponsors to help shape and focus the product development;
  • Use lean, customer focused processes to work with patient or user groups to refine and focus the product to solve tangible issues;
  • Map the most appropriate route to market for the product, including kite marking, health economics analysis and trials processes (where appropriate);
  • Work with Key Fund to provide in depth analysis of measurable social impacts of the companies and their products (this includes health, environmental and employment measures and value of that impact);
  • Bring in private investors, social impact investors, corporates and public sector partners such as TSB and NESTA to provide additional early stage financing.

All of which builds an ecosystem regionally, linking to a global network of stakeholders working in this sector.


We are inviting partners to innovate in healthcare with us.

Find out more! Enquire