Belfast Telegraph

Companies boosting home healthcare in Euro mission

By Margaret Canning

Companies in Northern Ireland who are pioneering ways in which patients can be treated and monitored in their homes are bringing their technology to a European audience.

A 'connected health and prosperity event' in Brussels, hosted by MEP Diane Dodds and organised by the Department of Health and Invest NI, aims to demonstrate how Northern Ireland is using innovation and technology to improve patient health and boost the economy.

Companies who are taking part in the event, which takes place today and tomorrow, include mobile medical device specialist Intelesens, data analysis firm Exploristics and Yarra Software, which has developed programmes for pharmacists and health trusts.

Health Minister Edwin Poots and Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster are both due to attend the event, where they will meet Tonio Borg, European Commissioner Health and Consumer Policy and Maire Geoghegan-Quinn, EU Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science.

Exhibits include new technology from Queen's University designed to help prevent elderly people from falling in their homes.

Mr Poots said: "I am very much looking forward to sharing with leaders across Europe our example of bringing health and prosperity together.

"Our mission here is simple - demonstrate how connected health and prosperity agenda is working in Northern Ireland and we will attract more interest, expertise and investment. This can only improve the ways we deliver healthcare.

"It is important that Europe sees what Northern Ireland has to offer as this will help us progress and prosper."

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said: "Healthcare is one of the key industries capable of delivering a strong knowledge-based economy and in Northern Ireland many of our companies are at the forefront of the connected health and medical devices sector.

"Treating more people in their homes will be a major feature of future health services, offering significant opportunities for industry and academia to commercialise research and ultimately improve patient care."