Background 

The Better Care Victoria (BCV) Innovation Fund has delivered three rounds of innovation projects with a total of 37 projects funded to date. Each year the focus of the fund has shifted to align with broader priority areas of Safer Care Victoria  and the Department of Health and Human Services. The focus areas identified offer an opportunity to impact the greatest number of consumers and health services and areas where innovation opportunities are abundant. 

An information brochure is available to download with details of the process and anticipated timeline for the 2019-20 BCV Innovation Funding round. The brochure also details what we are looking to fund and tips for developing the idea prior to completing the application. 

The process involves two-stages:

  1. Stage one: 'idea pitch' application. This involves a written application where successful applications will be invited through to stage two.
  2. Stage two: project plan development. Funding will be provided to approved project plans.

Key dates

 Stage   2019 dates  Stage  Details
 One January - April Idea development Get your team and partners together to develop an idea to address a challenge of interest. Make sure the challenge you are responding to aligns to your strategic or business plan, or both, and that your executives are on board.
Late January Information release Information on application requirements released.
Monday 18 March Applications open An electronic platform will be available.
5 pm Thursday 18 April Applications close The electronic platform will close 5 pm sharp. Strictly no extensions.
Early June Application outcome Notification of outcome and invitation to stage two following a comprehensive assessment process.
 Two Mid-June – late-July Project plan development  
Early September 2019 Stage two outcome Applicants will be notified of their funding application.

What do we mean by 'innovation'?

The BCV Innovation Fund is seeking ideas, concepts and 'solutions' that are novel and are game changing. Better Care Victoria defines innovation as 'new or novel ways of doing things that improve both access to and the quality of, healthcare for patients'. It differs from improvement in that improvement has a focus on making changes to the 'current state', whereas innovation is the creation of a new state. 

Innovation adds value and changes one or more of:

  • business or operating models (and the services provided)
  • the experience of customers and staff (and perception of your brand)
  • relationships and partnerships (health and other)
  • the results/outcome you achieve
  • the potential of your organisation (and/or partnership)

Categories of innovation are:

  • Product innovation
  • Process innovation
  • Business model innovation

The three characteristics of innovation are:

  • Novelty
  • Application
  • Intended benefit

Please refer to information brochure available for download for a detailed explanation. 

Focus areas and challenges

This year we are introducing challenges for applicants to respond to. The challenges are to guide thinking and to help with broadening exploration of possibilities.

The focus areas and challenges are:

  • Care beyond the hospital walls
    • Joined up management of chronic disease
    • Community mental health
  • Quality and safety
    • Shared decision making
  • Digital health
    • Application of a digital solution to address patient level challenges in the areas of:
      • Joined up management of chronic disease
      • Community mental health
      • Shared decision making

Descriptions of the focus areas and challenges are provided in the information brochure available to download in the download section.

Is the BCV Innovation Fund the right fund for your idea?

Developing ideas and completing funding applications is time consuming and requires significant investment by the parties involved. Before embarking on preparing an application for the BCV Innovation Project fund, make sure the fund is the right grant for your idea and what you are seeking to achieve.

The following are excluded:

  • Project where the primary purpose is research or trials
  • Projects where the outcome is a registry
  • Funding to support salary for clinical work
  • Projects where the main deliverable is training and education or promotional materials
  • Projects designed to deliver clinical care to address a current service gap
  • Projects without commitment for ongoing budget for service delivery will not be considered
  • Projects where prior executive endorsement has not been gained.

Answering the following questions will assist in determining if this is the right fund for your idea.

  • Does your idea meet the BCV definition of innovation? Does it contain one or more of the three characteristics of innovation?
  • Will your idea address the identified challenge and impact on performance and experience metrics?
  • Will your idea and project be able to deliver early benefits within 12-18 months?
  • Is your idea aligned to organisational strategy or the business plan, or both?
  • Do you have sponsorship at executive level and do you have organisational support for the service/model that has been proposed? Is your organisation committed to sustaining the outcome of the project?

Further information

Please contact us via our email bcv@safercare.vic.gov.au for further inquiries.