“MEDICA and COMPAMED have always had a high degree of international impact, and this remains their trump card. Top decision makers from around the world come together here and see the huge breadth of what we have on offer, which is the international frontrunner and has yet to be beaten”, Joachim Schäfer, Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf, said, summing up the four-day run (from 13-16 November 2017) of the world’s biggest medical trade fair and the international leading specialist trade fair for the supplier market for the medical technology industry. Of a total of 123,500 professional visitors, over 60% came from countries outside Germany, from 130 different countries. Among these were visitor groups with members who were the top of their field, from China, India, Columbia and Nepal, along with visitor groups from the most important markets for medical technology in Europe who have attended for years and years.
MEDICA also proved to be first place globally in terms of its exhibitors; Joachim Schafer underlined this: “A large proportion of our 5,100 exhibitors came from abroad, from 66 countries, presenting innovations covering all the needs for the outpatient and inpatient care sectors. Despite the renovations taking place in our trade fair premises and the fact that the area that housed Halls 1 and 2 was not available for this year’s MEDICA, we hit the same booking profit as the previous year. With the temporary lightweight construction Halls 3a and 18, we were able to respond to almost all requests for exhibition space successfully.”
The current reports from the trade associations highlight how important the stimulus for international business that MEDICA and COMPAMED provide is for the service providers. According to the German Medical Technology Association BVMed, the medical technology industry expects to see an increase of almost 6% in its global turnover, and this will be driven by dynamic developments in the export market. In comparison, domestic trade will experience a relatively low growth of 2.8%, predicted to result in overall turnover of 30.6 billion Euros. These are the outcomes of the latest survey of 106 German and foreign manufacturers. At the time that MEDICA was on, the trade associations SPECTARIS and ZVEI also confirmed that their member companies were experiencing far more growth in export business than they were in comparison to domestic demand, which is marked by a plunge in capital expenditure, and the inpatient and outpatient sectors.
A new umbrella brand brings together international expertise
In addition to the opportunity to make many international business contacts, which the service providers were offered once again this year at MEDICA 2017, the opportunity to participate in other medical trade fairs in attractive continental markets is also growing in significance. “For many years, our successful healthcare events abroad have offered the ideal platform to unlock the growth potential of prospering economic regions”, explained Horst Giesen, Global Portfolio Director for Health & Medical Technologies at Messe Düsseldorf.
A new umbrella brand, MEDICAlliance, was introduced at MEDICA 2017 for this purpose, enabling both exhibitors and visitors to navigate these options easily. Horst Giesen sums it up: “Based on our world-leading trade fairs MEDICA, REHACARE and COMPAMED, we are offering global event expertise throughout the entire value-added chain and supply chain for medical care and rehabilitation, as well as the corresponding supplier products and services under this new label.” The specialist trade fairs MEDICAL FAIR in Mumbai, New Delhi, Singapore, Bangkok, Suzhou and the MEDICAL MANUFACTURING ASIA trade fair (in Singapore) and INTEGRATION (Moscow) and more are all part of MEDICAlliance. The new umbrella brand MEDICAlliance encompasses all of Messe Düsseldorf’s global trade fair activity and its subsidiaries in the health sector. This includes strategic partnerships for events, such as HOSPITALAR (Sao Paulo) or ZDRAVOOKHRANENIYE (Moscow).
The partnership with MEDTECH COLUMBIA (Bogota) is brand new. A cooperation agreement for this was signed by Werner M. Dornscheidt, the CEO of Messe Düsseldorf, Tom Mitchell, the CEO of Messe Düsseldorf North America and Andrés López-Valderrama, the CEO of Corferias Bogota (organizer of MEDTECH) on the first day of MEDICA 2017. “Columbia is one of the markets experiencing the greatest growth in medical technology in Spanish-speaking Latin America. In terms of strategy, it is important that we show unity with them via MEDICAllianca”, said Werner M. Dornscheidt, emphasizing the significance of this future engagement. The sales volume for the Columbian market for medical technology amounts to 1.3 billion US dollars and is expected to grow by at least 20% before 2019, with an import quota of 80% (Source: gtai).
Brand new and tried and tested — useful for visitors and exhibitors
To respond to the interests of our many international visitors as well as possible, the MEDICA programme had even more new event formats added to it this year — with highlights that were of international relevance whilst simultaneously addressing the traditional German professional visitors.
For example, the new conference, MEDICA ACADEMY, was a certified advanced training event for doctors from a wide range of disciplines. It received an excellent response from its participants. The seminar offered on “Handing Over Practices”, to mention one among many, was met with great interest. The latest numbers from the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (Kassenärztliche Bundesvereinigung) (Source: Arztmonitor 2016) proved that we have picked up on the hot topics here. According to these numbers, almost one in four practising doctors in Germany is planning to give up their practice within the next five years.
Currently, the topic of infection prevention is of importance to both national and international audiences. Infection prevention was a focal point in the MEDICA ACADEMY seminars that was remarked upon and noted by many, and the same applied for the new MEDICA LABMED FORUM. From the various viewpoints of the different outpatient and inpatient medical professional target groups, the questions that were important to them were addressed — from facets of travel medicine and worldwide migration to interdisciplinary cooperative work to fight against the increase in resistance and multi-resistance with sufficient hygiene measures and therapies that comply with the guidelines.
The forums integrated into the trade fair and their accompanying conferences, such as the established MEDICA MEDICINE + SPORTS CONFERENCE for sports and preventative medicine, or the international military and disaster medical conference DiMiMED, among others, have also aided the exhibitors to find the right target groups for them, and this has been demonstrated by the example set by Oehm und Rehbin GmbH. Over the past years, they have used the industry sessions at the DiMiMED conference to present their hardware and software solutions for mobile medical imaging. They have been taking part in MEDICA as an exhibitor since 2016. “The international scope of MEDICA is crucial for us — it’s the ideal context to show the vast range of our products” explained Bernd Ohm, the CEO. For this company, being able to speak closely with doctors, technical universities and engineers is an important component of their innovation strategy.
Digitalisation and dematerialization for smart processes
To sum up the discussions from the other well-attended themed forums which were integrated into MEDICA, for example the MEDICA HEALTH IT FORUM or the MEDICA CONNECTED HEALTHCARE FORUM, as well as the innovative products presented by the exhibitors, we can state the following: Digitalization is penetrating all sectors of medical care, and this is a trend that is here to stay. Economic feasibility and easy handling of medical technology devices and products are top priorities in terms of ensuring sales. Any applications that make relevant information available at the point of care as quickly and easily as possible are in very high demand. Mobile computing programs on tablets and smartphones are examples of this, along with their apps. This leads us onto another trend: dematerialization. With more and more systems, devices and products, innovation is overwhelmingly based around new software solutions and less on hardware. This equipment is also becoming more compact and lighter, without any reduction in performance. An ultrasound system consisting solely of a combination of the transducer, a smartphone and an app was one of the product highlights at MEDICA 2017. Thanks to innovative development of the transducer, ultrasound-to-go has become an option even in cardiology, one of the most demanding disciplines.
Wearables also proved to be particularly smart. Many innovations in this sector were presented for a variety of fields of application at MEDICA 2017, for example for diabetes or cardiac disease through to optimal wound care (via intelligent plasters). Humotion, a German start-up, used its presence at the new MEDICA START-UP PARK (in Hall 15) to present a new sensor system which is integrated into fabric. This enables a patient’s entire movement dynamic to be captured with great precision, which provides valuable information to doctors and therapists of people with orthopaedic issues or geriatric patients.
“A New Era for Hospitals”
Under the theme “A New Era for Hospitals”, the 40th German Hospital Conference was dedicated to queries on health policy following the parliamentary elections, also covering digitalisation and clinical quality assurance among other topics. Over 2,000 participants attended this leading information and communication platform aimed at the directors and management of German hospitals. The event was accompanied by the European Hospital Conference (as it is every other year). The European Hospital Conference is a meeting point for the top decision makers from hospitals throughout Europe. Here, the eHealth Action Plan 2012-2020 from the European Commission was a topic that awoke much interest and was avidly followed.
COMPAMED: Tiny components are the next big thing!
Held alongside MEDICA, COMPAMED (in Halls 8a and 8b) reinforced its reputation as a top international event for the supplier market in medical manufacturing, clocking up almost 800 exhibitors from 35 countries. The companies and research institutes came to Halls 8a and 8b and showcased their high-tech solutions, thus presenting themselves as skilled partners for development and production in the medical technology industry. This year, miniaturized components constituted a popular topic. These are needed as they are used as components in wearables or implants (e.g. sensors, rechargeable batteries and RFID technology), to give an example.
Date of the next MEDICA in Düsseldorf: 12 – 15/11/2018
Date of the next COMPAMED in Düsseldorf: 12 – 15/11/2018