• Memorandum of Understanding signed to encourage collaborations in healthcare research
  • S$2m grant will fund six joint projects of up to S$300,000 each
  • The joint projects will focus on nationally-relevant diseases

To encourage collaborations that will generate patient care innovations, SingHealth and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) announced a new five-year research tie-up at an MOU signing ceremony today.

To boost research projects under this tie-up, SingHealth and NTU also announced a grant worth S$2 million, which will fund six joint research projects of up to S$300,000 each.

The joint research projects will focus on nationally-relevant diseases, including ageing, diabetes, eye diseases, infectious diseases, skin and plastic surgery and medical technology.

Professor Ivy Ng, Group CEO of SingHealth, said, “The NTU-SingHealth partnership is highly complimentary and will facilitate research from bench to bedside more seamlessly. Our clinicians can highlight areas in clinical care that could potentially be improved to the attention of engineers and scientists.”

Professor Bertil Andersson, NTU President, added, “NTU has a track record of working with hospitals to do research that will benefit patients, and today’s partnership with SingHealth is an expansion of our previous successful collaboration.”

Some of NTU’s research breakthroughs are being tested in SingHealth. There are also currently several joint projects in development. One of them is a more accurate, smoother and safer surgical tool for removing layers of cornea.

It is in the prototype phase, built by scientists from NTU’s School of Materials Science and Engineering together with clinicians from the Singapore National Eye Centre. If successfully commercialised, eye surgeons will perform corneal transplants more easily and their patients will recover more quickly.

NTU’s Institute of Media Innovation and the National Heart Centre Singapore are also working on a joint project, helping heart surgeons plan for surgeries with the help of a 3D virtual reality model of patients’ hearts.

Prof Ng said, “Each institution brings their unique expertise to the team and ultimately, we hope working together will produce tangible outcomes that benefit patients.”

The announcement was made at SingHealth Duke-NUS Research Day, 21 January 2016.