"Smart craftsman" tree selection: AI medical devices are not short of innovation and lack of "ingenuity"

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Brain-computer interface, digital therapy, rehabilitation robot, and artificial intelligence are promoting new technologies to empower more new medical devices. Shanghai has many dedicated to the research and development of AI medical devices.

In order to discover more potential innovative medical companies, on November 1st, a Shanghai city digital transformation "smart craftsman" tree selection competition was launched in Shanghai Zhangjiang Artificial Intelligence Island. All participating companies were from Shanghai. After intense discussions by the judges, companies including ZhuoDao Medical and WuXi Atest were shortlisted for the "Smart Craftsman" finals.

The judges participating in the tree selection competition included experts from the medical device industry association, the computer industry, and academic leaders from various departments of the hospital. "Ingenuity" talents.

Standards for Emerging Therapies to be Established

A reporter from China Business News witnessed the contestants' defense. Among the 12 participating companies, the digital game therapy for patients with cognitive impairment and motor dysfunction, and the rehabilitation robot track especially attracted the attention of the expert group.

For example, the judges were very interested in a company that was developing a digital therapy for the early prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease. Wang Yunlong, deputy secretary-general of the Shanghai Medical Device Industry Association, asked the company: "How does your registration certificate express the intended use of the product? Another judge asked questions about the price and profitability of digital therapy products.

The company replied: "Our product is a medical product, not an entertainment product. The sales are in the form of an annual fee of 1999 yuan per year. The hospital has its own purchase price. Now our annual revenue has reached 40 million to 50 million. gone."

How to use digital means to improve the cognitive level of the brain is a direction that many medical AI companies are exploring. Professor Huang Gang, director of the Shanghai Key Laboratory of Molecular Imaging and head of the nuclear medicine discipline at Shanghai Renji Hospital, told Yicai Global: “Digital therapy, as an emerging medical product, has been developed in many countries in recent years, but the industry is still Lack of corresponding standards. I think that as China is concerned, new equipment and new therapies need to be developed, so they must have their own standards. By introducing more detailed rules and gradually improving the standards, this is the first step; the second step is to create Standards and leading standards, only in this way can China achieve the real level of 'intelligent manufacturing'."

Huang Gang said that in recent years, my country has introduced more and more policies to promote the development of the medical device industry. The key issue now is not the lack of policies, but to make good use of these policies.

A reviewer of a tertiary hospital in Shanghai who participated in the review shared his feelings after listening to the company's introduction to the first financial reporter. He said that the devices developed by many companies are aimed at the pain points of current clinical applications, such as the diagnosis of complex diseases in infants and young children, the pain treatment of cancer patients, the rehabilitation of paralyzed patients, and the exploration of brain-computer interfaces. These clinical problems urgently need to be solved. Combined with artificial intelligence and digital medical care, it provides patients with effective and rich options for diagnosis and treatment, which reflects the infinite potential of China's innovation and the vitality of China's "intelligent manufacturing".

The aforementioned judges are particularly interested in innovations in the participating companies. He told the first financial reporter that rehabilitation robots can help people with dysfunction to recover their physical functions such as movement and cognition through functional compensation and rehabilitation training, and have great application prospects in the fields of rehabilitation and elderly care.

According to statistics, in 2021, the rehabilitation robot exhibition will account for 35% of the overall domestic medical robot market, second only to the 40% scale of surgical robots.

High-level technical personnel are still lacking

Previously, Shanghai had issued the "Shanghai's Action Plan for Building Future Industrial Innovation Highlands and Developing and Expanding Future Industrial Clusters", requiring the layout of future industries, building future industrial clusters, and exploring the application of brain-computer interface technology in limb movement disorders, chronic consciousness disorders, and mental illnesses. Applications in the field of medical rehabilitation.

"As modern medical care enters multidisciplinary integration, future rehabilitation robots can also integrate various cutting-edge technologies such as brain-computer interfaces to achieve more applications in the treatment and rehabilitation of neurological diseases." A participating brain-computer interface company is in charge People told the first financial reporter.

The development of China's local emerging medical equipment companies has also caused multinational giants to rethink their development strategies in China. Due to their optimism about flexibility and innovation capabilities, these multinationals have begun to cooperate more and more with local medical innovation companies in recent years.

For example, in the Shanghai Innovation Center of Siemens Healthcare, more than 150 Chinese ecological partners have settled in, and more than 30 cooperation projects have been launched or are under preparation. Wang Hao, president of Siemens Healthcare China, told CBN reporters: "Thanks to China's investment and emphasis on innovation, a large number of local innovative medical companies have developed in recent years, and Siemens Healthcare's strengthening of cooperation with these companies will also help Shanghai to build An innovation highland for the life and health industry."

On November 1, Siemens Healthcare Shanghai Innovation Center also signed a cooperation agreement with Weiguang Medical, Shentou Medical, Orient Medical, and Jianshan Medical in the fields of precise cardiovascular interventional diagnosis, medical image enhancement, laser navigation and positioning for lung cancer, and cancer diagnosis and treatment. Carry out cooperation in four directions to promote innovative research and development of advanced diagnosis and treatment technologies and intelligent medical devices.

However, compared with the international mature medical giants, China still has a big gap in the production and manufacturing of high-end medical equipment, and this requires more talents with "ingenuity". Many experts told CBN reporters that China does not lack innovation capabilities. Compared with innovation capabilities, China lacks high-level technical talents.

"High-level technical talents are very important. Compared with developed countries, what China lacks is the 'artisan spirit'. It is not enough to have ideas. What is even more valuable is how to make a product with high-quality and consistent standards. It is very important to the development of China's medical equipment, and it is our weak link, which needs to be strengthened." Huang Gang told the first financial reporter.

He believes that through the improvement of my country's medical device supply chain in recent years, the overall manufacturing level has been greatly improved, but there is still room for improvement. "In the context of the national centralized procurement policy, we especially need to avoid using price as the sole criterion, and pursue price optimization on the premise of paying attention to quality." Huang Gang added.