Israeli health tech startups to head to UK to showcase wares
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Israeli health tech startups to head to UK to showcase wares

Number of digital health firms in Israel rises to 580 by end of 2019, more than double the number in 2011, according to Start-Up Nation Central data

Illustrative image of digital health technology (chombosan; iStock by Getty Images)
Illustrative image of digital health technology (chombosan; iStock by Getty Images)

A delegation of 10 Israeli heath technology startups will be visiting the UK next month as part of a bid by UK healthcare organizations to build more modern and effective healthcare services, and address the problems of overcrowded clinics and insufficient resources.

AstraZeneca, NHSX, Care UK, Walgreens Boots Alliance and Amazon Web Services will host the startups for a series of events in London.

The 10 startups, chosen out of 100 applicants, are a part of TeXchange program set up by the British Embassy in Israel that connects UK companies to Israeli firms with “promising digital solutions,” the embassy said in a statement.

The delegation consists of Binah.ai, an artificial intelligence firm with healthcare applications; Breezometer, a provider of real-time air quality data; EarlySense, a maker of monitoring systems to track patients’ well-being; Medial EarlySign, which has developed software to flag for diseases such as colon cancer, Medivizor, whose software allows patients suffering from chronic illnesses to create a health profile online and get personalized information about their condition; docdok.health, a Swiss- and Israel-based startup that develops personalized healthcare solutions; Sivan Innovation, a developer of web applications for disease management; Selfit Medical, a developer of a digital therapy platform for the aging population; Vaica Medical, a maker of a device that reminds people to take their medications; and IMNA Solutions, which has created a patient management and data collection platform.

Vaica’s Capsuled, a cloud-connected, drug-distribution device to make sure medications are taken on time (Courtesy)

The increase in the use of data and AI across all sectors is a national goal for the UK, set out its 2017 Industrial Strategy White Paper. The UK government sees these digital healthcare tools as a way to fight diseases, the statement said, and Israel is one of the nations it is looking at for inspiration.

The number of digital health companies in Israel rose to 580 by the end of 2019, more than double the number in 2011, according to Start-Up Nation Central, which tracks the industry. Israeli digital health startups raised $662 million from investors in 69 deals last year, according to the data. The so-called Startup Nation is seeking to become a leader in the field, and the Israeli government in 2018 set out a NIS 1 billion ($289 million) program to boost activities in the sector.

The UK Israel Tech Hub, a team within the British Embassy in Tel Aviv, seeks to tackle the healthcare challenges faced by UK organizations by connecting the British companies to advanced solutions from Israel.

The Hub is a public-private initiative founded in 2011 with offices in London. The Hub aims to promote tech and innovation partnerships between the two countries, focusing on areas with high potential for partnerships such as fintech, biomed and smart mobility. The Hub has helped facilitate over 80 bilateral tech partnerships, worth over £600 million ($784 million), the statement said.

“Israel is a world-leading source for core technologies required to realize healthcare frameworks,” said Samuel Cronin, manager of Healthcare Innovation at the UK Israel Tech Hub, in a statement. “Israeli tech has already proven its dominance in AI, computer vision, big data analytics and predictive analytics, to name but a few. Based on its expertise in the building blocks of the new and future world of medicine, Israel is becoming an ideal candidate to advance healthcare.”

TeXchange, organized annually by the UK Israel Tech Hub, has already been instrumental in creating more than 20 signed UK-Israel partnership deals, the statement said.

In past years, TeXchange focused on smart mobility, cybersecurity, retail-tech and fintech. Hundreds of UK companies and over 60 Israeli startups have taken part in TeXchange activities so far, and this year’s program is among the largest in terms of UK participation, according to the statement.

The TeXchange program “is an important part of the strong, deep and modern partnership between Israel and the UK. Healthcare innovation has become increasingly important to the UK, and could benefit greatly from Israel’s medical technology capabilities,” said Neil Wigan, British ambassador to Israel, in the statement.

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