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Gloucestershire Business News

Funding for charity to develop tech to help seriously ill children

A much-loved Gloucestershire charity has been granted funding from Comic Relief to develop a digital tool to help parents and carers manage their children's medicine routines.

WellChild, the Cheltenham-headquartered national charity for seriously ill children, will work in partnership with a host of medical experts.

The project will build on the success of Medicines For Children - a website for parents and carers providing independently endorsed information and instructional videos on medicines and their administration.

Partners will include the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), the Neonatal and Paediatric Pharmacists Group (NPPG) and Manchester-based social tech agency, Reason Digital.

Matt James, director of communications and marketing at WellChild said: "This is exciting news for the Medicines for Children project and the many thousands of parents and carers across the UK managing increasingly complex, 24/7 medicine routines.

"The Medicines for Children website has already established itself as a trusted source of information for parents on how to give medicines to their children safely.

"However, we want to take that experience to a new level and give parents and carers an easy-to-use tool that will make managing their child's medicine routine simpler and safer.

"Parents report a lack of appropriate information when prescribed new medication, elaborate paper-based systems to keep on top of medicine routines and a constant need to repeat themselves over and again to health professionals.

"With this tool, we hope to alleviate that - from dosage reminders and record keeping, to instant access to their child's medicine information wherever and whenever they need it.

"Whilst the funding from Comic Relief will be essential to make this project happen, the support and guidance we will receive from the Tech for Good programme is the real jewel in the crown - ensuring that we create a tool that will truly impact the lives of parents and carers across the UK."

Andy Fox, a pharmacist and chair of the Medicines for Children Project board, said: "We know from our work with WellChild that this app is needed and will really help parents and carers. The rapid development time and support means that we are looking forward to launching this app early next year."

The 2018 Tech for Good programme will help 13 not-for-profit organisations to develop digital innovations that create social change.

Chosen projects are given funding and access to dedicated technical expertise for nine months, starting in July.

The completed projects will be demonstrated at a public event in March 2019.

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