SBRI Overdose detection, response, and intervention: Feasibility

Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) opportunity for disruptive innovations addressing key drug related overdose priorities. Funded by the Office for Life Sciences (OLS) and the Scottish Health Industry Partnership (SHIP) who are investing up to £5 million across two competitions: Feasibility (this fact sheet) and Demonstration (see the Demonstration fact sheet).



Deadline for initial contact with test bed research partners: 24 March 2023

Competitions close: 21 April 2023, 11am

Applicants notified: 19 June 2023

Project start date & duration: 01 August 2023 for up to 4 months (Phase 1)


Projects must develop innovative solutions that focus on detecting, responding to, and intervening in, early acute risk of non-fatal and fatal overdose. This competition is for feasibility study projects which have not yet reached prototype development. Two competition phases: contracts will be given for Phase 1 only (technical feasibility study), but the application must define the goals and a plan for Phase 2 (prototype development and evaluation). Proposals must detail work with a test bed research partner and a plan to work towards necessary approval in all the UK health systems. Must demonstrate a credible and practical route to market, including a commercialisation plan and regulatory compliance plan. Proposals that bring together sector specialists and include a co-design and co-production element with the expertise of people who use drugs, and their families, are encouraged.

Specific Themes

Project can focus on one or more of the following priorities: discrete digital technology solutions with intuitive, simple design, focussed on service users & responders, simple alert or responder pathways that create effective responses to potentially fatal overdose events, enhance the ability to self-monitor by people who use drugs, improved equity of access, detection, and response in this vulnerable population through connected and safe digitalised platforms, enhanced simple live intelligent data gathering processes, surveillance and remote monitoring, enhanced innovative intervention therapeutics as antidotes to overdose episodes. Potential innovative mechanisms/technologies include (but not limited to) wearable patches/devices, remote monitoring, GPS receivers, smartphone apps, decentralised application environments, AI and machine learning, virtual reality and augmented reality, gamification, data analytics and therapeutics. Projects can focus on one or more of the following: detection of potential overdose episodes, alert or response to potential overdose episodes, intervention therapeutics as antidotes to overdose episodes.

Projects that will not be funded

Those that do not demonstrate significant support and engagement from potential future customers throughout the project or a clear route to market, do not demonstrate a credible plan for acquiring data which would support product approval in all 4 healthcare systems, do not feature plans for a demonstration in Phase 2, do not include an evaluation phase and a plan to collect information to inform a cost or benefit analysis, do not have a test bed research partner involved, do not have plans to obtain relevant certification and regulatory approvals.


  • Lead organisation can be any size and must be registered in the UK, EU, and EEA. Subcontractors allowed if the costs can be justified.

Funding Rates

  • Phase 1: Feasibility Studies: Up to £100,000; up to 4 months duration. Phase 2: Prototype Development/Field Testing: Up to £500,000; up to 12 months duration.
  • At least 50% of the contract value must be attributed directly and exclusively to R&D services.

How PNO can support you

The UK team has a strong track record in securing some of the most competitive national and European grants on behalf of its clients, with a full understanding of how a project should be presented to stand the highest chance of success. Each year in the UK alone, we are responsible for the submission of more than 100 funding applications across all sectors and priority areas. Based on this extensive experience, through careful project selection and using key insight into how a project should be best positioned, we consistently achieve success rates that are more than 5 times the typical success rates for UK national schemes and EU programmes.

For further information or to discuss a project idea please contact PNO Consultants

0161 488 3488 |

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