RAG BLOG: What is the state of the Swedish innovation ecosystem for eHealth?

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It was inspiring two days 24-25 January at MVTe in Kista Sweden – Meeting place for welfare technology and e-health – trade show and conference.

I met many exhibitors and listened to selected talks targeted at the exhibition visitors. The exhibit presented caregivers, carereceivers, innovators and solution providers working at the Swedish and the Nordic healthcare scene.

Caregiver perspective was presented by the Swedish Society of Nursing https://www.swenurse.se/in-english/ . I asked them what was the coolest innovation of the show. Camanio Care (http://www.camanio.com/sv/) jDome BikeAround got their vote. Motiview by Motitech (https://motitech.no/) has similar idea to stimulate people with dementia by allowing to bike in a familiar virtual environment. I tried the jDome by taking a ride at my home neighborhood in Töölö, it really is cool. I did not leave empty handed from the Nursing booth – I now have an enhanced basis for eHealth and nursing future research to study, and two flexible reflectors to protect me in dark winter traffic.

The carereceivers are to some extend addressed by Anvendarföreningen https://www.teknikboken.com/ which however is more like a developer community of universities. Anyway, they have developed a motion sensor based system to monitor the activity at remote carereceiver homes along with algorithms determining if the behavior needs to prompt caregivers or family members for checking the situation.

The municipalities are setting up living labs: Borgen by Trelleborg, MISTEL by Västerås (mistelinnovation.se), TestMiljö by Halland (halsoteknikcentrum.hh.se), are some that I met at the trade show. Altogether 20 municipalities are joining in SKL’s LEDA change program to accelerate digitalization of welfare services.

One of my stops was Robotdalen (www.robotdalen.se). Their mission is commercializing robotics innovation on health, industrial and field service robotics. The Robotdalen operations are around the Mälardalen area around the lake Mälaren. Test environment for robotics is the Robot Application Center (RAC) in Eskilstuna. Two of the completed projects on health area are Bestic robotic spoon helping to eat, and therapy toy cat JustoCat. Two projects nearing completion are Safe Base bed integrated weighing system with analytic features to monitor sleep quality and nutritional status, and Poseidon shower robot. Both products have competition from similar innovations like Mektron Robotikk universal shower, and Beddit sleep tracker – keys to success will be ease of use, integration to welfare services and analytics capabilities (AI).

There were several system providers with care solutions integrating different sensor products to the healthcare resource planning. Telia (www.telia.se) demonstrated their Telia Homecare with continua (http://www.pchalliance.org/continua) support and Z-wave based sensor integration. Tieto LifeCare more or less launched their SmartCare platform together with Phoniro – official launch will be at Vitalis show later this spring. Everon (http://www.everon.fi/en) presented its latest development SoteSiron eHealth platform for effective communication of customer health and wellbeing between caregivers and family members of the customer. Part of the system solutions is key management for homecare customer’s homes. It was exciting to see couple of practical solutions for smart locks from Bekey (https://en.bekey.dk/) and Danalock (https://danalock.com/) that allow homecare to get rid of the physical keys once the simple door opening gadget is installed and digital key management gives the caregiver smartphone the opening key.

Key takeaways:

  • The caregiver needs are still emphasized more than direct carereceiver needs. It is understandable as the solution buyers are the caregiver organizations. Carereceiver needs rely on the caregivers to understand and represent their customers.
  • As all companies presented strong technological quality and innovative solutions, customer’s customer understanding, offerings packaging and brand strategies/experience should be included in the winning formulas once global competition for care services is opened more.
  • It is good to see that family members have been recognized as part of the care equation. This is something that human-centric digitalization makes it easier to implement via sharing the data across network and smartphone applications. Family members can also help the carereceivers to be heard.
  • Summa summarum: The innovation ecosystem for eHealth in Sweden is alive and well.

My journey in eHealth continues. Next show to go to is Vitalis (www.vitalis.nu) in Gothenburg 26th of April 2017. More from there.

Wishing eHealthy times,

Risto Soila

Risto Soila

Risto is RAG’s Innovation Guy, R&D professional focusing on innovation for healthy living by applying IoT, Digitalization and Robotics ideas. You can contact Risto by email: risto.soila (a) rag.fi