Israeli medical devices showcase digital innovations at MEDICA
Israeli medical devices showcase digital innovations at MEDICA
Interview with Tomer Epstein, Head of Medical Device & Digital Health Unit at the Israel Export Institute
Due to the Corona Pandemic, the Israel Export Institute unfortunately had to cancel its participation in MEDICA 2020. Mr. Epstein is no longer working for IEI.
For the annual MEDICA trade fair, companies from all over the world assemble in Düsseldorf. The Israel Export Institute has been a part of it for the last couple of years. They present medical devices and digital innovations from different Israeli companies at their joint booth.
Tomer Epstein, Head of Medical Device & Digital Health Unit, Israel Export Institute
In the interview with Medica trade fair, Tomer Epstein elaborates on some of the new products, which will be presented at this year’s MEDICA.
What kinds of products are being presented at your pavilion each year at MEDICA?
Tomer Epstein: MEDICA is the Israel Export Institute’s main activity for the Life Science industry. We are taking pride in having such a large presence at the fair with Israeli techs. With over 80 companies under our wing, we are offering techs ranging in different areas of healthcare and technology from remote monitoring, diagnostics, over rehabilitation, wound management, pediatrics and many more.
Do they have a relation to the ongoing pandemic situation – if so how?
Epstein: We have an active part in the Israeli company’s business continuity journey. Currently, we are trying to keep business operation the same as before the pandemic if possible. By increasing the activity for commercialization, product awareness and business collaborations for the Israeli companies together with global players such as investment funds, hospitals, insurance companies and distributors we are working towards that goal. We were able to amplify our activity deal flow by 3 times compared to the last years’ time frame. All in the efforts to promote Israeli companies and keep generating valuable business connections.
What are some of the recent innovations in the area of medical devices?
Epstein: Medical devices are shifting towards digital innovation, implementing IT abilities within the devices for more accuracy, better care coordination with physician-patient relation and reduction of care costs. In addition to this growing trend, medical robotics keep pushing forward and taking improvements and deployment in the OR and precise care even further. Some examples would be companies like Sensus Medical for dermatology and oncology treatment, Motorkia for rehabilitation or Sight, that combines hardware and AI for blood diagnostics and complete blood count. Other innovative techs include options for point of care diagnostic and early detection of cancer.
Medical devices from Israel offer innovative solutions for the global market.
What are some of the recent innovations in the area of digital health?
Epstein: Digital Health has become a norm in healthcare over the past year, especially during the COVID pandemic preparedness. Israel is considered to be a leader with more than 600 companies active in the field. Hospitals have deployed EMR for a long time and thus there is a huge asset of medical data for research and testing and up to date infrastructure for implementations. Medical wearables and IoMT (Internet of Medical Things) is more relevant than ever with the requirements for isolations. In addition, it can save time, finances and can be operated from a distance. BioBeat have developed a sensor that can monitor blood pressure continuously without the usage of cuffs.
AI and ML (machine learning) act as a DSS (decision support systems) tool for physicians to make the best decisions backed up by a powerful algorithm based on science and “experience”. EarlySense leverages artificial intelligence (AI) and big data analytics to elevate patient care by providing actionable health insights and improving clinical outcomes.
How has COVID-19 influenced the Israeli medical device and digital health sector?
Epstein: COVID-19 has affected the Israeli companies in several areas; both in the development and manufacturing capabilities. Many companies are relying on importing parts from Asia and Europe, which got affected as the flights were reduced. Hospitals as the main product end users are focusing on dealing with the pandemic so they stopped pursuing agreements and purchasing products, which are currently not as relevant for pandemic treatments. Therefore, many companies are in need to search for different sources of business cooperations to generate sales. In addition to finding investments to keep the activity going during the pandemic period; many of the venture capitalists (VC) have pulled away their current outreach for new tech investments and there is a growing need to explore new funding paths such as grants.
With the Israeli medical devices point of care diagnostics can be conducted.
What kind of techs, offered via the Israel Export Institute can influence or help with the COVID-19 situation?
Epstein: The strict measures on social distancing, self-isolation and the need to accurately monitor and diagnose patients has resulted in new virtual ways of clinical work and operation. It widely opened the possibilities for remote care technologies, decision support tools and point of care diagnostics as well. Many companies in Israel have worked quickly to adapt their solution and added features to cope with COVID19. We gathered the majority of the companies into one catalogue, including companies in areas of care coordination, EMS, ICU, IVD & PoC, DSS, remote monitoring and diagnostics companies. For example Eitan Group who developed an advanced infusion solution, Oxitone, with a wrist-sensor pulse oximetry monitoring solution or Inovytec, who have various techs for EMS including ultra-portable turbine ventilator. Sion Medical for skin cleaning and disinfection solutions, Sensible Medical for diagnosis and management of COVID-19 patents and Binah.ai a video-based, AI-powered vital signs monitoring device are some related products, too. TytoCare a comprehensive Primary Medical Exam and Telehealth Visit and Vayyar for remote detecting and monitoring of vital signs for early-stage COVID-19 symptoms are presenting techs as well.
What do you expect from MEDICA every year? Epstein: Creating hundreds of business collaborations and generating new leads for years to come, MEDICA is a leading platform for that and we enjoy taking part each year.
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