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MedTech leading innovation in Europe, with 11,000 patents

Irish medtech CEOs meeting in Galway today heard that the sector is now firmly at the fore of innovation across Europe, with 11,000 patent filed to date. Strong growth in the past 10 years has seen employment in the sector increase by 36%, to 30,000, making Ireland the second largest employer for medtech professionals in Europe, per capita, and number one for FDI. The Irish Medtech CEO Forum, which takes place today and tomorrow, in the Radisson Blu Galway, will be addressed by industry experts from Ireland and abroad. The event is co-hosted by the Irish Medtech Association, Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland annually.


Speaking at the forum Irish Medtech Association Director Sinead Keogh said: "Connected health is fast becoming a focus for new innovation in the sector. It is using new connected technology, bringing key industries together with doctors and increasingly well informed patients to get people the right care. As well find better ways to provide an early diagnosis and get people more personalised healthcare. The latest CSO Irish Health Survey (2015) showed that in the past 12 months 74% of people had visited a GP, 34% had visited a nurse and 32% reported a long-standing illness or health problem. New medical technology is helping people recover and monitor their health in new ways to make it easier for people to receive home care."

"A major growth area for the sector is the 'Internet of Medical Things', This connects expertise from different industries, and empowers patients and clinicians through online networks and new technologies. The Irish Medtech Association is delighted to have been awarded funding to establish an Internet of Medical Things Skillnet jointly with ICT Ireland, the Irish Software Association (ISA), and BioPharmaChem Ireland, to develop niche skills which will be core to delivering healthcare solutions of the future.

"To support growth in the sector and to make the full use of medical advances we need the right infrastructure. Ireland has a dispersed rural population and the speedy implementation of the Government's National Broadband Plan is needed to connect all citizens. This is essential for not just for businesses, but also for patient healthcare."

Enterprise Ireland Manager of Lifesciences Department, Deirdre Glenn, said: "Despite the global recession in the past decade, the Irish medtech sector has continued to grow and evolve into a leading global cluster with the emergence of our own vibrant indigenous industry. Our aim at Enterprise Ireland is to help companies with global ambition to start, innovate and scale, and this is revealed in the success of our thriving medtech sector. The accomplishment of medtech in Ireland is due to companies embracing innovation and collaboration, two elements that are vital to international business success. We will continue to work closely with Irish medtech companies, developing productive relationships and partnerships overseas that will broaden the international growth of this dynamic sector for the future."

IDA Ireland Head of Medical Technologies Michael Lohan said:"What makes the medtech sector in Ireland so successful is that we've every facet of the medtech ecosystem here, including key sectors, leading clinicians and a strong academic community. The sector has grown significantly, from 50 companies in the early 1990’s, to a global medtech hub which includes FDI as well as indigenous and related supplier and services. Last month saw two significant announcements, West Pharmaceutical Services growing it’s Irish capabilities in drug delivery and diagnostic devices with a 60,000 sq foot expansion and 100 new jobs at Mulhuddart, and Teleflex's official opening of their Global Operation and International HQ in Athlone. IDA expects to continue to see significant investment into the Irish medtech sector which will drive growth, innovation and support jobs."

Sponsors include, KPMG, Teleflex, AIB, Bemis, SteriPack Contract Manufacturing and the Irish Medtech Association Skillnet for their support.

You can find out more about the Irish Medtech Awards by visiting www.irishmedtechassoc.ie/awards and the Irish Medtech CEO Forum by visiting www.irishmedtechassoc.ie/ceoforum.

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