The South Korean government is planning to accelerate the development of medical instruments based on Industry 4.0 technology such as surgical robots, mobile healthcare devices, and artificial organs.
The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy and the Ministry of Health and Welfare held a meeting at the Wonju Medical Industry Techno Valley on July 4 and released a plan to that end.
According to the plan, the government is going to launch a technological development project in order to assist in product development and licensing, medical technology assessment, and arrangement of insurances among others. In addition, new appliance testing platforms are put into operation at major hospitals so that companies can design and test their prototypes and clinical trials with greater ease. This is to help them obtain sufficient clinical grounds so they do not fail in the medical technology assessment due to the shortage of clinical grounds.
Additionally, medical instrument testing facilities meeting international standards are built at the Korea Testing Laboratory, the Osong Medical Innovation Foundation and the Daegu Gyeongbuk Medical Innovation Foundation so that medical instrument exporters do not have to obtain a test report from a foreign testing agency. Also, South Korean companies in the industry can get more help from the government’s arms in China, Vietnam and Indonesia in entering overseas markets.
An open lab is planned to be established in Wonju to facilitate R&D and business model development by mobile healthcare device developers. Hospitals’ patient information and data are going to be statistically analyzed so big data covering 50 million people can be provided for companies and hospitals by 2020.
According to the government, the new plan is expected to lead to the development of innovative medical instruments incorporating artificial intelligence technology and the like for three years to come and creation of approximately 2,000 R&D jobs for five years to come.