With the conclusion of Arab Health last month, the world’s biggest health exhibition, we at Arabian Gazette had a chance to interact with Mr. Meria Heikelä, Director of Business Finland, to get a perspective on healthcare and discuss on the latest innovations and offerings from Finnish healthcare companies. Here are the excerpts:
Can you provide a perspective on Global healthcare and Middle East/GCC in specific?
Global healthcare market differs from country to country, but in short, the Gulf healthcare industry has shown a record growth over the past few years and is expected to continue growing due to the increasing population and rising prevalence of lifestyle diseases. The non-communicable illnesses like heart diseases (CHD), diabetes, hypertension and cancer have become major public health problems in the GCC countries. Initiatives are being taken to combat these challenges. Digitalization in Health care is growing trend and so is rehabilitation. There is also a clear need for health-related education.
What attracts you to Arab Health?
Arab Health is the world’s biggest health exhibition. In addition, Gulf is an important market for several Finnish companies. Our participation last year helped us to enter into the Saudi Arabia market. This has been a big step for us and Arab Health has been a great platform for us to meet with potential buyers.
Can you share some of the top innovations/products that you will be showcasing in Arab Health?
There are over 30 innovative medical products that will be showcased during the Arab Health Exhibition. Some of them are:
Improving Surgery Success with Virtual Reality
SurgeryVision™ is a virtual reality solution for surgery planning. Virtual reality planning has been shown to be 40 % faster and 10 % more accurate than current solutions ensuring higher surgery success rates.
The world’s first practical method for measuring the brain function of intensive care patients
MedKit Finland Ltd is providing all medical items for ambulances (as a full package), mobile clinics or field hospitals.
Environmental Infection Control Against Airborne Pathogens. Genano is a rapid and cost-efficient way to improve air hygiene in healthcare facilities by preventing transmission of airborne pathogens.
Optomed Oy is a Finnish medical technology company specializing in retinal imaging devices and solutions. Optomed’s mission is to make eye disease screenings available for everyone, wherever needed. IT is a modern, mobile and easy-to-use hand-held retinal imaging device that are suitable for any clinic for screening of various eye diseases, such as diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and AMD.
DigiRehab – Digital Physical Therapy
It is a joint digital physical therapy solution and ecosystem focusing on rehabilitation services. It features digital gamified solutions dedicated especially for elderly can be used both in prevention and rehabilitation.
Finland is rated as one of the best when it comes to public healthcare. What is the secret to its success?
Finland is a model country of equal, efficient, top-quality healthcare. Every Finnish citizen and permanent resident has a personal identification number, which means their personal health and medical information from the moment they are born to the moment of their death is stored in comprehensive digital registers and databases covering the entire nation’s health data. Consequently, patients do not disappear from the Finnish system, and their healthcare data can always be traced. The functional Finnish healthcare system combined with a highly educated population, which trusts professionals and is willing to participate in medical studies yields excellent care results.
Finland is also known for the below:
- Top-quality equal healthcare
- 100 % health data coverage in electronic databases
- Quick admission and seamless care
- Multi-disciplinary, evidence-based care
- Excellent healthcare results
- #1 Qualified engineers
- #1 funding for technological development
What opportunities do you see for Finnish companies on healthcare sector in this region?
Prevention, rehabilitation, health education, Hygiene solutions in hospitals, cancer screening, all this supported by digital solutions.
It’s no surprise that over the last two decades, the value of Finnish health technology exports has increased more than fivefold, and the net trade surplus has increased ten-fold. The reason is Finland is easy to reach with highly innovative technology superpower that knows how to solve problems and enhance the quality of patient life. We are back at Arab Health this year to present our technology to our market peers and to assist the UAE in achieving its healthcare goals.