Applications for self-injections of adrenaline in cases of severe allergies, devices to detect potential meningitis in newborn babies, diabetes self-monitoring systems, artificial intelligence software to predict new clinical episodes and applications for developing personalized medicine were just some of the hundreds of innovations shaping the healthcare of the future on display at this year’s HEALTHIO 2018, an event whose main purpose is to promote the empowerment of citizens and their decision-making with a view to their health and well-being.
Organized by Fira de Barcelona, HEALTHIO brought together citizens, healthcare professionals and innovative companies in an open space to promote dialogue among all the agents who make up the healthcare ecosystem and to further the evolution of the system. Thus, from 16 to 18 October, Pavilion 8 of the Montjuïc venue served as a platform for exchanging knowledge and experiences presented by different hospitals, health centres and innovative companies to professionals and users of the healthcare system, all divided into three thematic areas (well-being and health, personalized medicine and chronic diseases and ageing).
The nearly 4,500 visitors to HEALTHIO were able to learn more about the new products displayed by the 115 exhibitors by means of 25 itineraries and guided tours that explained, for example, how to prevent cardiovascular diseases or cancer, which pathologies virtual reality can be applied to and how to make monitoring of respiratory diseases easier and simpler.
In addition, the event’s four agoras gathered together more than 321 speakers at 420 talks, including, among others, those given by Dr Martínez Ibáñez, director of the Vall d’Hebron Hospital, and Josep Maria Campistol, director of the Clínic, who stressed the need to increase cooperation between centres, and Dr Gabriel Capellà, a researcher and the director of the Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute, who explained the importance of studying DNA for the treatment of hereditary cancer.
In addition to informing the public of the best way of applying the innovations provided by the system, HEALTHIO organized a schedule of activities to encourage networking among the professionals, including the holding of around fifty B2B meetings laying the foundations for the setting up of several business partnership projects, such as the Health & Bio Team Dating seminar involving twenty biomedical research projects and thirty mentors.
Miquel Serrano, the director of HEALTHIO, displayed his satisfaction with the course of the event: “After last year’s pilot experience, this fair has shown that the sector needs a platform that can bring together all the agents in the healthcare ecosystem”. As for Dr Jordi Serrano-Pons, the scientific director, he expressed his “appreciation for all the professionals and associations that have placed their trust in Healthio to present their innovations to the citizens”.