The National Centre’s Digital Healthcare and Healthy Living 2030 Task Force today recommends:

1. Serious gaming and interactive therapy models must be integrated into the training and development for the next generation of mental health specialists and healthcare professionals.

2. The Department of Health, NHS and Innovate UK should work with interactive media trade associations to establish a standing network of therapeutic specialists and commercial developers.

3. UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) should fund a multi-disciplinary research programme on serious games for mental healthcare.

Publishing the first report of the Task Force, David Docherty, NCUB CEO said: “Evidence suggests serious games can help mental health amongst young people. Yet, the speed of global competition is faster than that of current UK firms. At number two in academic research in this space, the UK has much more work to do to understand the mechanisms of therapeutic ‘serious games’ and to ensure UK business and digital healthcare industries are at the forefront of one of the fastest growing sectors in the world.”

The report ‘More than a game? Digital gaming therapies and mental health in young people’ shows that digital prevention and management of such conditions has the potential to benefit patients, physicians and ultimately the NHS. As the first report of the Digital Health and Healthy Living 2030 Task Force, we focussed on mental health amongst young people, providing an insight into this rapidly growing epidemic, and establish a broader understanding on the essential innovation and skills required to implement new digital technologies across the NHS.

The Task Force is chaired by John Jeans (Chairman, EM Imaging, Chairman UK BioCentre, Adviser to the Prime Minster, Medical Technologies), Beverley Byrant (Chief Operating Officer at System C) and Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz (Chairman, Cancer Research UK). Specialist input was provided from a top-level steering group complied of industry experts, clinicians, patient advocacy groups and academics. We are particularly grateful to PwC, Elsevier, Big Radical and XDs.


National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) Inspiring universities and business to work together for sustainable growth and prosperity.

A National Centre Task Force convenes leaders from universities, government and business to focus on a particular economic sector or issue. We work together to identify problems and examine issues in depth. The Digital Healthcare and Healthy Living 2030 Task Force was established to review and make recommendations on innovation and graduate skills necessary to strengthen the UK’s position in the digital health market.

For further information please contact Shivaun Meehan