Stronger together - "The new era of prevention and diagnostics" was jointly launched by 'Codex4SMEs' and EEN

An appealing framework programme was created with subject matter expects ranging from regulatory affairs to market access by the Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) and the Interreg NWE project Codex4SMEs, with special thanks to project partner Daniela Onofri from Medicen as event coordinator. Participants learned about opportunities to work with global medtech companies in programmes such as Horizon Europe Health and the Innovative Health Initiative.

The moderator Anja Lange welcomed more than 100 participants from all over Europe and lightheartedly guided them through the varied programme and the lively question and answer sessions. The programme was opened by the project leader Dr. Margot Jehle, with a presentation of the support measures for SMEs in the diagnostics sector by the Codex4SMEs project.

The keynote speech was given by Dr. Dirk Biskup, CEO of CeGaT - Center for Genomics and Transcriptomics - GmbH from Tübingen. As the first successful diagnostics company to combine human genetics with high-throughput sequencing, he shared his experiences from the founding period and talked about current challenges. For example, results of his developed corona tests were not allowed to be sent by email due to the GDPR.

A pointed overview of the EU In-Vitro Diagnostics Regulation (IVDR) with its new regulations, as well as risks and challenges for companies, was given by Philip Brame, CEng and Director of Medical Devices at Voisin Consulting. The IVDR came into force back in May 2017 and reveals significant implications for IVD manufacturers. Manufacturers with already approved in vitro diagnostic devices still have a good six months to meet the increased requirements of the IVDR, as the transition period ends on 26 May 2022.

In the next presentation, the challenge of market access in the healthcare sector was highlighted by Dr Stefan Walzer, Business Developer at Seijgraaf. Dr Walzer first gave insights into market access and reimbursement procedures for healthcare applications in the DACH region. He also presented the reimbursement of DiGAs, digital health apps, which have been available in Germany since the beginning of 2020. At the end of the presentation, the approval procedure was put into European comparison and contrasted with other countries.

Another focus was on the expectations of global medical technology companies when collaborating or partnering with SMEs. In this context, Patrick Boisseau, Director General for Strategic Initiatives at MedTech Europe, presented the Innovative Health Initiative (IHI), which will replace the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI). The IHI is the largest public-private partnership (PPP) for health under the new Horizon Europe.

Other support measures for SMEs were presented in the pitch session that followed. The projects and initiatives involved in this event briefly and succinctly presented their support opportunities for SMEs. Detailed info, as well as the contact details of the respective contact persons for the individual projects and measures can be found below:

In the last presentation, Martha Cahill, a National Representative of Ireland, presented the opportunities in Horizon Europe. With a budget of €95.5 billion, Horizon Europe is the EU's most important and largest funding programme for research and innovation. Mrs Cahill specifically addressed the Horizon Europe Health Cluster and presented upcoming calls for proposals relevant to diagnostics companies.

The presentation was complemented by Dr Hillary Cronin, Chief Innovation Officer of Metabolomic Diagnostics Ltd. from Ireland. As an independent author and EU expert for research proposal evaluations, she has already been able to support numerous companies and research institutions with successful Horizon funding. Metabolomic Diagnostics also receives funding from the predecessor programme Horizon 2020 and will pursue further opportunities under Horizon Europe.

After many impressions and information, it was then time for the matchmaking session. Many participants used the virtual opportunity to find new potential project partners for Horizon calls and to get to know each other via video conference.

Did you know? The matchmaking platform will be open until September 2023, you're welcome to sign up and find collaboration partners for your approach.

>> Sign up here

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