Derry-headquartered Elemental Software has ambitious plans to refine its social prescribing service to drive growth and appeal to new sectors.

Elemental Software is investing more than £1.2m in its business to drive export growth.

The SME, which specialises in social prescribing consultancy services and technology has also created eight jobs in its Derry office.

“Our technology can make it easier for health and social care professionals to refer people with health risks such as mental health, to community-based lifestyle interventions”

Social prescribing is a way of connecting patients in primary care with sources of support within the community. This has been widely advocated as a means of empowering individuals to manage their own health and wellbeing. 

Social prescribing

“Following an initial investment in R&D in 2017, our technology can make it easier for health and social care professionals to refer people with health risks such as mental health, to community-based lifestyle interventions,” said Jennifer Neff, co-founder and CEO of Elemental.

“This type of referral can reduce demand in GP time and ultimately keep people out of hospital for longer. This is imperative for global health services to operate and as public health budgets worldwide are coming under increasing pressures due to Covid-19, social prescribing has been identified as a growing sector.

“We were recently awarded a place on the new GPIT NHS framework which is in effect a buyer’s catalogue for NHS organisations within primary care. Our new investment in R&D will help us to enhance the technical, security and governance standards to proactively win contracts available on the framework,” Neff said.

Elemental Software has experienced a 66pc increase in overall revenue in the past year. Invest NI has offered £317,810 of support towards Elemental Software’s R&D project, the creation of eight jobs and marketing activities. All of the jobs are in place.

Welcoming the investment, Dr Vicky Kell, Invest NI’s Director of Innovation, Research & Development said: “We assisted Elemental Software to develop its social prescribing platform to include the ability to integrate with NHS systems. This has helped the company win many new contracts, three in Scotland alone.

“This further investment in R&D is helping the company to refine its software and enable it to stay ahead of market trends, maintain business relevancy and will be a great selling point to help it expand into new geographical markets and sectors. It is also welcome news that with our support the company has recruited eight new staff to its team to help it further develop sales in international markets.

“I would encourage other globally-focused Northern Ireland companies to follow in the footsteps of Elemental Software, go to investni.com and see how we can support your business.”

In recognition of Elemental Software’s commitment to innovation, it has been awarded a Platinum Level Innovator Certificate from Innovate NI. Innovate NI is a Department for the Economy programme, helping local businesses innovate successfully. It is delivered by Invest Northern Ireland, local councils and further education colleges.

Invest NI’s R&D support is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth & Jobs Northern Ireland (2014-2020) Programme.

By John Kennedy (john.kennedy3@boi.com)

Published: 23 February 2021

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