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Two leading healthcare, medtech events set to be bigger and better this year
FOR the past 20 years, two of the region's top medical industry events have been giving visitors access to the latest technologies and thought leadership from the healthcare sector.
The two events - Medical Fair Asia (MFA) and Medical Manufacturing Asia (MMA) - are returning this year bigger than ever. Held at Marina Bay Sands from Aug 29 to 31, the events will feature 1,220 exhibitors from 62 countries and 23 national pavilions and country groups. Some 20,000 visitors from around the region and across the medical and healthcare sectors are expected.
Medical Fair Asia has grown from strength to strength since its first iteration in 1997 under the brand name HOSPIMedica Asia. The first show had just 200 exhibitors and five national pavilions.
In 2012, MMA was launched alongside MFA to feature manufacturing processes used in medical technology. The two events have since evolved into a one-stop trade platform catering to the entire value chain of medical and healthcare products, solutions and technologies.
The exhibitions come under a global network of medical trade fairs called MEDICAlliance by Germany's Messe Düsseldorf Group, which also organises top events such as MEDICA, REHACARE and COMPAMED.
BACK WITH A BANG
This year's exhibitions will feature 12,000 innovations and solutions in areas such as geriatrics, digital healthcare, 3D printing as well as micro and nanotechnology.
The shows will also zoom in on key trends that will shape the healthcare sector in the coming decades. MFA, for instance, is set to put the spotlight on Asia's ageing population and rising middle class, new disruptive digital healthcare solutions such as remote and wireless healthcare, IT platforms, wearable devices, smarter medicine and healthcare analytics.
Meanwhile, the fourth edition of MMA will feature companies in field such as additive manufacturing or 3D printing technologies, imaging and diagnostic imaging solutions, as well as nano manufacturing and automated solutions.
Here are a few exhibition highlights to look out for.
- Community Care Pavilion
Given Asia's rapidly ageing population, eldercare related products and new models of care are garnering more attention, in particular digital healthcare and community-based care. With remote healthcare monitoring technologies, for instance, caregivers and medical practitioners will be able to monitor the health of elderly patients in real-time, which allows patients more time at home with their families and in their communities.
The inaugural Community Care Pavilion will feature a wide range of products, including geriatrics, orthopaedics and rehabilitative equipment as well as remote healthcare monitoring products and services.
- Start-Up Park
Technology has become a vital part of the healthcare sector, with mobile health apps, wearable technologies, 3D printing, robo-doctors, and genomics playing an integral role for the next phase of the industry's growth. The Start-Up Park is a dedicated showcase of innovative start-ups with cutting-edge healthcare technologies.
- Future 4 Health (FTR4H) Digital Health Lounge
The Future for Health (FTR4H) Lab & Lounge is a networking platform that will facilitate the exchange of ideas and discussions among digital health start-ups, tech incubators, e-health think tanks, companies and investors. Companies in the field of digital health will demonstrate the latest capabilities and innovations in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Smart Data, the Internet of Things and more.
INSIGHTS AND THOUGHT LEADERSHIP
In addition to products and solutions, this year's MFA and MMA will also include a wide range of platforms for knowledge sharing, including conferences and forums covering more than 100 topics including sports medicine, wearable technologies, robotic surgery, community care and medtech.
Some conferences and forums to look out for include:
- MEDICAL FAIR ASIA MEDICINE + SPORTS CONFERENCE 2018: Back by popular demand, this conference will feature experts discussing new exchange formats, tailored sport medical therapies and innovative approaches for prevention, recovery and population health management.
- Paradigm Shift in Healthcare seminar: This free-to-attend seminar will focus on overcoming some key challenges the healthcare industry will face in the coming years, including moving from hospitals to the community, as well as shifting the focus from healthcare to health.
- High-technology for Medical Devices Forum: Exhibitors will provide insights on the latest micro- and nanotechnology innovations and best practices.
The forum is organised by IVAM Microtechnology Network, a German-based international association with an extensive membership comprising companies in the fields of microtechnology, nanotechnology, advanced materials, and photonics.
- MedTech in Focus seminar: This inaugural seminar with the theme Digitalising the MedTech Industry will discuss the latest trends and innovations companies can adopt when it comes to updating their medtech processes. It is organised by the Singapore Precision Engineering and Technology Association (SPETA) and Messe Düsseldorf Asia.
Visitors to MFA and MMA in previous years say the shows have been landmark events for the healthcare and medical industries. Dr Jacob Thomas, the President of the Association of Private Hospitals of Malaysia, said MFA "has continuously showcased some of the latest medical devices and equipment from across the world".
"It served as a good meeting and reference point for busy healthcare professionals to keep abreast of the latest technology and solutions available," noted Dr Thomas, who is also chairman of Ramsay-Sime Darby Health Care.
"Our global procurement office in Singapore was able to learn first-hand of what's new in the industry and at the same time evaluate the value analysis process to determine the best value products to buy, and whether these products conformed to patient safety standards.
"MFA has also provided us with a good platform to expand our network to meet with key manufacturers and distributors."
Dr Parit Wongphaet, a director at S. Medical Enterprise (Samrong General Hospital) who has visited almost every edition of MFA over the past decade, said his firm found "some excellent international suppliers" at the 2016 exhibition. They have since started importing medical equipment and solutions for their hospitals, which have helped reduce cost and increase the safety and quality of services provided.
"I also appreciated the trade-focused setting where we got to bring many industry best practices back to our hospital. The visit also fostered many dynamic idea generation, exchange and discussion sessions," added Dr Parit, who is also managing director of TMGI Limited.
Dr Prapa Wongphaet, also a director at S. Medical Enterprise (Samrong General Hospital), said: "Being in hospital management, Medical Fair Asia is a must visit for me as it provides a highly relevant one-stop marketplace and all-rounded overview of innovations and solutions across the global healthcare chain.
"More significantly, the exhibition also enables cross-sector collaboration and the forging of key relationships with fellow professionals at the heart of the Asian and global healthcare sector," added Dr Prapa, who is also director of corporate development at S. Medical Enterprise, president of the Thai Medical Wellness Tourism Association, and an advisor to the Thai Private Hospital Association.
"We are not only here looking for new products. I've found out that visiting the exhibition together with my hospital staff as a group is very helpful for us to come up with new ideas to implement products and service in a new or different way when we return to our hospital. Walking around the venue together gives us the kind of environment that fosters quick and dynamic idea generation, exchange and creative discussion."
This year's editions of MFA and MMA are highly anticipated.
"I am confident this year's edition will be even more comprehensive and I look forward to seeing innovations such as telehealth solutions, geriatric medicine, disease management devices and technology, and an overall wider variety of more advanced products that would increase productivity, are more cost effective and can open up new line of services in the hospital. I am also interested to catch up with our suppliers face-to-face to learn of their new developments and products too," said Dr Parit.
Visitors are also looking forward to the exhibitions growing in size and scope in the years ahead.
"As the exhibition expands further, special focus areas could be developed to align with changing demographics in healthcare such as the aging population, increase in non-communicable diseases, evolution of pathogens, big data and biosensors in healthcare. The organisers should continue to bring more global medical technology and innovations closer to the regional markets in Asia," said Dr Thomas.
Added Dr Prapa: "I would like to see new choices of products that is different and better, more cost effective or that can open up new line of services in the hospital. I also look forward to meet some suppliers that we have purchased before to catch up and learn about their new developments."
Medical Fair Asia 2018
When: Aug 29 - 31
Where: Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
Pre-register at www.medicalfair-asia.com
This year's Medical Fair Asia will be the largest to date, with over 1,200 exhibitors including 23 country groups, more than 12,000 medical and healthcare products as well as special zones for digital health and community care among others. In addition to being the region's top sourcing platform, Medical Fair Asia will also offer a thought-provoking line-up of conferences and seminars on key issues that will shape the healthcare industry in the coming decades.
Medical Manufacturing Asia 2018
When: Aug 29 - 31
Where: Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
Pre-register at www.medmanufacturing-asia.com
The Asia-Pacific region is expected to become the world's second largest market for medical technology by 2020. Riding on this growing demand, Medical Manufacturing Asia 2018 is an exhibition and conference featuring the latest medical technology for the region. In addition to thought-leading forums, workshops and technical presentations, the event will feature 250 global and regional exhibitors and more than 2,000 products.