tisdag 10 december 2019

What's next in India

While we celebrate the conclusion of the Sweden-India Year of Health, we have already initiated the next stage of our close collaboration. The new decade will bring increased activity within both midwifery and elderly care, covering both ends of the spectrum where Swedish solutions are particularly sought after.

The importance of digital health will only increase, especially with regards to the management of chronic conditions, but here we hope to develop applications and medtech products with Indian innovators which can be applied in both markets in order to ease the enormous health care burden we face. The combination of longitudinal data from Sweden with volumes available in India could lead to significantly more efficient solutions. New agreements can also be expected within infectious diseases, in particular with regards to Anti-Microbial Resistance.

All this and much more was discussed during the State Visit to India last week. Swecare organised the Elderly Care tract with special focus on dementia, ripples of our dialogue with key opinion leaders can already be felt in the Indian health care community. Minister Harsh Vardhan and State Secretary Maja Fjaestad reasserted their commitment to the MoU which exists between our two countries. The Minister has already expressed his interest in visiting Sweden early next year.

MAMTA Founder and long-time Swecare partner Dr Mehra receiving the Royal Order of Seraphim & the Royal Order of Polar Star

tisdag 26 november 2019

How Swedish Scale-Ups fit into the Future of Digital Health

Sweden Germany Innovation Partnership: eHealth

One Day in Berlin


Digital health start-ups and businesses will play a crucial role in transforming health care to better take advantage of the technical progress by developing new innovative products and digital health solutions. Given the challenging regulatory framework of the health care sector but also the high potential, start-ups and businesses in digital health will profit substantially from exchanges, networking and cooperation between each other and with relevant stakeholders. This visit is part of ongoing discussions on discuss how Germany and Sweden can make sure to share our innovative businesses across borders and help them connect to a larger market both within the home countries and abroad.

Swedish Scale-Ups

  • Cambio Healthcare Systems
  • Coala Life
  • KRY / LIVI
  • Zenicor Medical Systems


Morning - Presentations by German government officials for the Swedish Digital Health Companies
  • Overview about the Digital Hub Initiative focusing the Digital Health Hubs by Germany Trade and Invest
  • Presentation on the Fast Track for Digital Applications by the Ministry of Health
  • Presentation on the Federal Funding Advisory Service at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy

Networking Lunch at the 

Swedish-German Business Day

Afternoon - Breakout session on eHealth and the German-Swedish Innovation Partnership
  • What are the main challenges in the German market
  • What are the strengths which Swedish companies could learn from
  • How will the new regulatory changes regarding eHealth change the health care landscape
  • Which collaborations would be most beneficial in order to ensure German and Swedish innovations can be tested within the existing system
  • Next steps: exchange of innovative companies during a Digital Health Camp in Q2 2020

Informal dinner with representatives from 

Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin

Main Take-Away

The upcoming Digital Care Act (Digitale Versorgung Gesetz – DVG) is a new administrative pathway to accelerate digitalisation and initiate "fast track" to reimbursement. It is only the first of many steps that Germany will take in order to harness new digital opportunities in order to provide citizens with the best health care (and preventive measures) while ensuring data and patient protection. There is scope for Swedish digital companies to be part of this process as the policy landscape evolves.

Thank you!

We could not have arranged this without the support of the team at GTAI and Business Sweden in Berlin! Look to this space for upcoming events (most likely April and/or May 2020) or get in touch if you would like more information.

fredag 15 november 2019

Ethiopia - Right in time

Last week a Swedish healthcare delegation, headed by the Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs, visited Addis Abeba, Ethiopia. A delegation trip to Ethiopia had been in the planning for a long time, but the timing has never been better than now.

A large market with a growing middle class, strong economic growth, good historical relations to Sweden and government focusing on improving healthcare were the reasons behind the decision. The Noble Peace prize being awarded to Prime minister Abiy Ahmed just a few weeks before our delegation just made it all feel even more right in time.

A group of 37 delegates led by our Minister for Health and Social Affairs, Lena Hallengren joined this triple helix delegation. This included representatives from three government agencies; the Public Health Agency, the Medical Products Agency and the National Board of Health and Welfare, and one academic institution, Karolinska Institutet.  Along came seven companies; Arjo, AstraZeneca, Atlas Copco Medical Gas, Elekta, Getinge, Human Bridge and Mimer Medical. The delegation was co-organized by Swecare, the Embassy of Sweden in Addis Abeba, Business Sweden in Nairobi, the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs along with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

We had a few intense and efficient days. The first day was planned to set the scene of the Ethiopian health care sector starting with a study visit to Black Lion Hospital, the country´s oldest referral hospital with large expansion plans. After a joint introductory meeting, the delegation was divided in three groups to visit the Pediatric emergency, Department of Pediatrics and Child Health and Oncology/Cancer center.  After the visit to the hospital, which is just across the street from the Swedish Embassy, we had a working lunch in the garden of the ambassador´s residence with the Ethiopian Food and Drug Authority. Their Director General Heran Gerba explained the role of their agency as an entry point for all companies in the sector to enter the market and that their new proclamation from February 2019 is now being put in place to enable a smoother registration for companies. She also mentioned that a digital registration is rolled out to smooth things further. The lunch continued with one-to-one questions from the companies to her colleagues while she sat down with the Director General of our Medical Products Agency and discuss possible collaboration.

The last meeting of the day was at Ministry of Health with the Minister of Health Dr. Amir Aman to listen in on his plans and thoughts about the status of the Ethiopian health system challenges and opportunities. We got a nice surprise at 3pm when we were all asked outside and had a small exercise/stretch together with ministry staff. This is part of the daily routine at the Ministry. After the break we got presentations from several department heads on their responsibilities and agenda for the future.
The day ended with a reception at the ambassador´s residence with a mixed crowd of international organizations, health care professionals and international NGO´s.  

The second day´s main event was our conference Sweden - Ethiopia Health Care Conference: Public and Private Cooperation for a Sustainable Health System. The event was held at Sheraton Hotel and gathered more than 90 attendants. The conference took off with welcoming remarks by Mr. Torbjörn Pettersson, Ambassador of Sweden to Ethiopia, followed by Dr. Munir Kassa  from the Ministry of Health (stepping in for Minister Dr. Amir that was called in to another meeting last minute) and  the Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs, Ms. Lena Hallengren. This set the scene of the conference with the context of the Swedish and Ethiopian health care and global challenges that we have to combat together.

A keynote speech was then held by Director General Ebba Abate from the Ethiopian Public Health Institute explaining the four major strategic missions of the EPHI; public health emergency management, putting research and knowledge into practice, capacity building and developing the national laboratory system.

Dr. Johan Carlson, Director General, Public Health Agency of Sweden was the next speaker and talked among other things about anti-microbial resistance, the disease burden in Sweden and how it differs with level of education. Dr. Carlson concluded with some words about the Sustainable Development Goals, and especially goal no. 3 on Good health for all at all ages.

After coffee break and an VIP tour of the company expo for the two ministerial representatives, the morning continued with interesting presentations from the participating Swedish government agencies and their Ethiopian counterparts on the health system topics of Access to safe and effective pharmaceuticals & medical products, Access to good health and care for all; the importance of data and guidelines and Access to knowledge and know how, each followed by a panel discussion by the participating companies and Ethiopian speakers.

The Conference ended with a delicious networking lunch, during which a lot of interesting discussions regarding the Swedish solutions presented, and the challenges in Sweden and Ethiopia took place.

After lunch, the business delegation went on to MCM General Hospital, which collaborates with the Nordics for their burns treatment unit. We met among others the general manager Dr. Young Dae Kwon and Dr. Morten Kildal from Akademiska hospital in Uppsala, who visits regularly, and learnt about their inspiring model for collaboration with regional hospitals to improve burns care in Ethiopia.

As the last thing on Tuesday evening we had a quick summary meeting with Minister Lena Hallengren and then went to the cultural restaurant at Capital hotel were the delegation had a nice Ethiopian buffet and was entertained by Ethiopian music and dance – some of us even got to try dancing.

Ethiopian Pharmaceutical Supply agency received us on the third day and showed us their warehouse where we had a Q&A session with Mr. Tesfalem, EPSA's Deputy Director General for Outbound Logistics

Across the street from EPSA is St Paul's Hospital that was our second meeting of the day. The visit started with a presentation on the hospital and their expansion plans, followed by study visits to different departments. 

Lunch was combined with a wrap-up session to hear what the participants thought of the program, and how they will follow up the leads they have gotten during the delegation.

The very last meeting was at Ethio-Tebib Hospital, a private facility with general and specialist departments. Among the specialties provided are Internal Medicine, Surgery, Gyn-ob, Pediatrics, Orthopedics, Radiology, Dialysis unit, and Emergency & Critical Care Medicine. 

From the wrap-up meeting we know that the participants got valuable insights and many contacts for possible collaboration and business to follow up on. The next step for Swecare will be a follow-up meeting in Stockholm at the end of January/begining of February next year to check what progress has been made and understand how we can further assist in deepening the collaboration with Ethiopia.

måndag 14 oktober 2019

The Future of E-health in Belgium - part II

This week we had the opportunity to hold a seminar together with the Embassy of Belgium and the Wallonia Export Investment Agency who had the pleasure of inviting Swecare member companies within Health Tech for an executive eHealth seminar and possible B2B meeting with OZ Consulting, specializing in eHealth strategies and opportunities in Belgium/Wallonia.

The aim of the seminar was to enlighten the eHealth strategies at work in Sweden and the innovations within the digitalization of healthcare services and possible partnership opportunities within the Belgian healthcare system.

The interest for these kind of seminars is quite popular among our members. Not only for networking but also for building credibility about different healthcare systems. It was nice to see Zenicor Medical Systems, WeCare AB, Predicare, Doctrin, and AsthmaTuner / Karolinska Institutet.

The Belgian side opened the seminar with Cynthia Slomian, OZ Consulting. She presented the eHealth strategies and opportunities in Belgium/Wallonia and their report project where they want to highlight Swedish disruptive companies.

This report project aims at showcasing companies and policies abroad in the realm of EHealth innovationThe report will be presented at the yearly gathering of “Digital Patient”, a network of French, Belgian and Luxemburg hospitals end October 2019. This symposium could also be an opportunity for exposure for Swedish companies.  >> Download report

Cynthia explained more about the national project “eHealth Hubs & MetaHub” coordinated by the eHealth platform. The platform is meant to make medical results from hospitals (and in the near future medical laboratories) available to any caregiver who currently is treating the patient. For detailed information see https://www.ehealth.fgov.be/fr/esante/professionnels-de-la-sante/hubs-metahub/presentation-generale.

Cynthia also spoke about the initiative of the Federal Belgian Government mHealthBELGIUM, which is the Belgian platform for mobile applications that are CE-marked as a medical device.

Before mHealth solutions are implemented, they will have to go through a validation pyramid to fast-track these applications. This evaluation model analyses whether an application is safe, secure and provides benefit to the patient, caregiver or the healthcare system. No more delays of valuable innovations accessing healthcare. Please visit www.mhealthbelgium.be for more info, FAQs and how to apply, etc.

Next speakers were Mathilde Faure, MyData-Trust who presented the importance of #GDPR for the health data in the life science sector and Shampa Bari, Regional Director at Swecare who gave a short introduction about Swecare and our mission.

After a short coffee break it was time for Malin Amnefelt, Coordinator at Vision for ehälsa 2025. She talked about their vision for #eHealth and #Digital #trends and that we need to see that there's a change in perspective. The patient is in the team and we need to look more at the needs of the patient.

Next speaker was Marcus Hjorth from Inera, a private company owned by Swedish county councils, regions and municipalities, as well as the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR). The owners have tasked the company with developing joint digital solutions that will help to streamline their operations. They have more than 40 #digital services to offer, among them the Swedish Healthcare Guide online, 1177.se. Sweden's national hub for advice, information, inspiration and e-services for health and healthcare. The general public is welcome to call 1177 for healthcare advice twenty-four hours a day, year-round, all over Sweden.

The last speaker was Björn Nordlund from AsthmaTuner. AsthmaTuner by MediTuner is a digital solution developed in close collaboration with the Swedish healthcare industry. It was created with the goal of helping patients take control of their asthma, simplifying the process and increasing efficiency for caregivers. Asthma is a chronic disease that affects around ten per cent of the population, there are major savings to be made by reducing handling time and achieving a system that provides more precise information on the patient’s lung function and symptoms. Mr. Nordlund showed us their remarking results in reducing the number of health care visits than with traditional non-digital self-management. 

Amandine Pekel, Trade and Investment Commissioner from the Embassy of Belgium wrapped up and invited all participants and members of Swecare to join them at Medica, visit their booth and their special Belgian Happy Hour. 

We say a big thank you to the Embassy of Belgium for making this an interesting event for our members!

For further information please do not hesitate in contacting the team at Stockholm-Wallonia Export Investment Agency via their email.

Should you wish to see the presentations, email Swecare.

tisdag 8 oktober 2019

Senaste nytt inom "Sweden-India Year of Health" - vad har hänt och vad är på gång!

Samarbetet med Indien fördjupas och Sweden-India Year of Health löper på. En mängd delegationer passerar Sverige och flera har även besökt Indien på senare tid.

En stor Tech Delegation var här i samband med Stockholm Tech Week där även Swecare modererade en panel om IoT, AI, och Robotik i hälsosektorn. Många nya kontakter knöts mellan våra start-ups (watch this space!).

Socialdepartementet och Swecare var i Indien för någon vecka sedan och tog då tillfället i akt och träffade våra kollegor på hälsoministeriet. De är fortsatt entusiastiska till samarbetet och vårt jubileumsår. 

Besöket från Jodhpur beskrevs i positiva ordalag och chefen för avdelningen som ansvarar för universitetssjukhusen sa att ministeriet anser att AIIMS Jodhpur är det bästa och mest välfungerande av de nya AIIMS utanför Delhi. Vi vill gärna se en större samverkan mellan svenska myndigheter och företag eftersom det här är en fantastik möjlighet att visa på våra styrkor inom hälsosektorn.

Vi fick träffade även några stora (svenska) och små (indiska) bolag, tjänstemän på lokala hälsoministerier i Maharashtra och Karnataka, och Indiska key opinion leaders inom vården. Vi pratade om innovationshub (Delhi) och test beds (Bengaluru) men vi behöver utveckla idéerna i samband med våra lokala partners, Business Sweden, och Svenska Ambassaden i New Delhi.

I samband med besöket tog vi upp frågan om nästa Joint Working Group under samförståndsavtalet och firandet av jubileumsåret och besök av den indiske hälsoministern som vi föreslagit skulle kunna sammanfalla i Stockholm under senhösten. Två datumförslag i november har lämnats till ministern då vår minister Lena Hallengren skulle kunna ta emot i Stockholm.

Skulle inte detta ministerbesök bli av är förhoppningen att vi kan förlägga firandet till Indien istället i samband med ett högnivåbesök i Delhi första veckan i december. Även i detta fall borde ett seminarium arrangeras men då förstås i nära samarbete med det indiska departementet.

Håll ögonen öppna, fortsättning följer!

Läs mer om vårt senaste besök i Indisk media:

tisdag 1 oktober 2019

Vägledning till hållbarhetsarbete inom life science – fokus på SME

Inom ramen för projektet Världens mest hållbara sjukvård 2030 som motor för svensk innovation och export har en vägledning tagits fram för SME-företag inom life science som vill utveckla sitt hållbarhetsarbete. Projektet har finansierats av Vinnova och varit ett samarbete mellan Nordic Center for Sustainable Healthcare, Medeon, Medicon Village, Sahlgrenska Science Park och oss på Swecare. Samverkan har även skett med Region Västerbotten.

Vägledningen ska ses som en introduktion till ämnet ’strategiskt hållbarhetsarbete’ och tar upp exempel på viktiga arbetsmoment och hållbarhetsaspekter.

 I dokumentet går det att läsa om:
  • Regler och riktlinjer som är bra att känna till
  • Relevanta moment och aktiviteter i det strategiska hållbarhetsarbetet 
  • Hur ledningssystem kan användas för att strukturera sitt hållbarhetsarbete
  • Exempel på centrala miljöfrågor 
  • Introduktion till att arbeta med mänskliga rättigheter, produktion och riskområden, antikorruption och arbetsmiljö

Om projektet Världens mest hållbara sjukvård 2030 som motor för svensk innovation och export

Projektet initierades med syftet att stärka och befästa Sveriges ledande position inom hållbarhet och sjukvård samt skapa nya innovationer och exportnytta i området. Fokus i detta steg har varit hållbarhetsarbetet inom life science. Fem workshoptillfällen samt ett 30-tal intervjuer med aktörer i branschen har genomförts för att kartlägga området och ta fram:
  • En övergripande vision för världens hållbaraste sjukvård 2030
  • En delvision för life science
  • En vägledning för hur hållbarhetsarbetet kan inkluderas hos SME-företag inom life science
  • Exempel på hur företag inom life science arbetar med hållbarhet idag
Resultatet ligger till grund för en projektansökan där de visioner som utformats ska följas upp med mål och aktiviteter fram till 2030.

Besök gärna Nordic Center for Sustainable Healthcare

Trevlig läsning!

onsdag 4 september 2019

Health Tech Scale-Ups in Germany

Operationalising the Innovation Partnership between Sweden and Germany

Swecare had the pleasure of supporting Socialdepartementet and eHälsomyndigheten with one of the workshops which took place during the Roundtable on the German-Swedish Partnership for Innovation in eHealth on Monday. Being able to use our vast and diverse network within the life-science ecosystem in Sweden to make sure that relevant interests are represented during such high-level discussions is one of our defining assets.

Ministers Lena Hallengren and Jens Spahn opened the Roundtable by stressing the need for cooperation between our two countries in order to maintain international competitiveness during these digital times. Both ministries were present in force leading the discussions of 54 participants during the course of the 4-hr afternoon meeting. The palpable commitment of all the public sector representatives, ranging from government officials, academic experts, to trade associations, during our the dialogue underline the scope of our engagement.

In the workshop on Digital Health Start Ups and Businesses, led by the charismatic Josefina Nungesser, Director of the Digital Hub Initiative at Germany Trade and Invest (GTAI), we discussed the new regulation passed by Germany allowing doctors to prescribe digital apps with health benefits which can then be reimbursed by the national health insurance system. From the Swedish side Swecare, IT&Telekomföretagen, HealthTech Nordic along with German counterparts from BitkomThe Federal Ministry of Health, The Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and EnergyCharité, decided to organize a start up exchange during 2020. Targeting perhaps 10 new innovative companies ready to scale from each country, we will create a 2-day program, one day in each of our countries, where we will engage with key stakeholders in the scale-up journey:

  1. Science and innovation parks
  2. Test beds in or near university hospitals
  3. Regulators
  4. Potential investors
Get in touch if you are one of these new digital companies! Initiatives from the other groups will be communicated once we have the final report from the Roundtable.

At dinner after a long afternoon of discussions - graciously hosted by the The Federal Ministry of Health (BMG)

Photo Credit: Embassy of Sweden in Berlin
During our short trip to Berlin, Swecare, at the initiation of Business Sweden, also gave its larger member companies an opportunity to present their success stories and challenges in the German market to Minister Lena Hallengren, the Swedish Ambassador to Germany, and State Secretary Maja Fjaestad. Digital solutions for nursing homes and patient registries came up during these discussions and we hope to include these multi-nationals as we operationalise our partnership. The established companies have access to considerable resources - expertise, financing, network - that they are ready to share as we work towards common goals.