Digital Health Delegation from Israel to Germany

With its innovation projects, the German Israeli Health Forum for Artificial Intelligence (GIHF-AI ) and the German Network of Startups and Mittelstand (GINSUM), ELNET brought with – its so far biggest delegation to Germany – around 30 Israeli healthcare experts, innovation managersstartups as well as representatives of the Israeli Ministry of Health to Berlin and Essen. The occasion was the second GIHF-AI Conference early September 2023, an exclusive event with around 80 high-profile participants, and the Big Bang Health festival with 1,500 guests. The delegation was supported by the Israeli Ministry of HealthBusiness Metropole Ruhr GmbH and Health IL.

On the first day, the delegation met with the Envoy of the Embassy of the State of Israel in Berlin Aaron SaguiThomas Renner (Head of the Directorate “Innovation and Digitalization”, German Federal Ministry of Health), and Prof. Dr. Martin Kreis (Chief Medical Officer, Charité), amongst around 20 other guests from Bundestag and the German Federal Ministry of Health, as well as from media and industry at the ELNET office in Berlin.

A joint event of PwC Deutschland, Strategy&, ELNET, the German-Israeli Chamber of Industry & Commerce – AHK Israel, the Israel Economic & Trade Mission, and the Deutsch-Israelische Gesellschaft followed, celebrating 75 years of the modern State of Israel and German-Israeli innovation cooperation with panel discussions and networking opportunities. The delegation spent the rest of the week in Essen to attend the second GIHF-AI conference as well as the Big Bang Health Festival. To get a glimpse of the Universitätsmedizin Essen (UME), led by GIHF-AI board member Prof. Dr. Jochen A. Werner, Dr. Anke Diehl (Chief Transformation Officer, UME) organized a tour through Germany’s leading smart hospital including its cutting-edge AI showroom, the ICU, and the radiotherapy department.

On the evening of September 5, the conference kicked off with a reception at Essen Town Hall on invitation of Mayor Thomas KufenDr. Yiska Weisband (Director Data Research Centers, Clalit Innovation) presented preliminary results of the first GIHF-AI study, advised by Prof. Dr. Sylvia Thun (Director CEI, BIH @ Charité) and Prof. Dr. Ran Balicer (Chief Innovation Officer and Deputy-DG, Clalit Health Services), and conducted by Dr. Alexander Schachinger (CEO, EPatient Analytics GmbH). The focus of the unique study is on trust in health data use in Germany and Israel. The fact that Germans are far more educated about and open to health data use than expected raised great interest amongst the participants who are expecting the final results, which will be published shortly, with great curiosity.

The conference day (September 6) marked two keynote speeches and a panel discussion on health data use in Israel, Germany, and Europe, moderated by Dr. Dennis Ballwieser (Managing Director & Editor, Wort & Bild Verlag). Dr. Axelle Menu-Branthomme (Researcher, Health Data Hub France) enriched the discussion with the French perspective on health data use. Breakout sessions on regulation, medical collaboration as well as innovation and market access followed. The policy recommendations and action points developed in the sessions were presented at the concluding panel with Carsten Ovens (CEO, ELNET-Germany).

Finally, all participants of the delegation took an active part in the Big Bang Health Festival (BBH), following the second GIHF-AI conference:

  • The GIHF-AI panel, moderated by Carsten Ovens, presented the results of the GIHF-AI conference.
  • ELNET held a masterclass about “Health Organizations – Catalysts for Innovation in Healthcare: Connecting Israeli Expertise with German Insights” where the innovation managers presented their organizations and ongoing innovation projects, moderated by Lea Ledwon (Program Manager GIHF-AI, ELNET-Germany) and Genoveva Barrios (Project Manager Innovation & Partnerships, ELNET-Israel).
  • In a startup pitch session, moderated by Daniela Amir (Head of Partnerships, HealthIL) and Frank Speer (Head of Internationalisation & Location Marketing, Business Metropole Ruhr GmbH) the startups presented their solutions in front of a crowded audience.
  • ELNET’s Israel Corner, an exhibition place at the venue, gave BBH participants more opportunities to engage with the Israeli delegation and exchange ideas.

GINSUM delegate Dr. Sivan Shafran Tikva, Founding Director of the Hadassah Medical Center Research and Innovation Center in Nursing shared her insights:

“We acknowledge that our delegation not only brought Israeli expertise and an innovative spirit to the German digital health context, but also initiated possible collaborations. Moreover, it was a chance to connect in-person within the Israeli-German ecosystem, strengthening the bonds that will undoubtedly lead to fruitful partnerships in the future. We would like to express our deepest gratitude to ELNET for making our visit to Germany an enriching experience”

Germany and Israel have tremendous potential for collaboration in the fields of health, innovation, and technology, and ELNET’s programs work to facilitate building new partnerships and collaborations.

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