On 15 February, the Basque Health Cluster, together with members Innoprot, Bexen medical and Biolan Health, explained the situation of the sector and the changes brought about by the pandemic. In the programme Hoy por Hoy, presented by Azul Tejerina Suárez, Maria Pascual de Zulueta, managing director of Basque Health Cluster, taked about hoe the pandemic has highlighted the importane of having a strong 0 km health sector in emergency situations.
She also emphasised the growth that has taken place in 2021 and the upward trend that can be seen. However, all has not been good: the entry into force of the MDR 2017/745 regulation and the upcoming entry of the IVDR 2017/476 is a big challenge for the sector both at state and European level.
Clarisa Salado, Innoprot‘s director, spoke about the opportunitis opened up by the pandemic, not only in the field of COVID-19. Despite selling internationally, both Maria and Clarisa highlighted the difficulties involved in selling to the Basque public system. And also the lack of regulatory knowledge amog young professionals, which makes it difficult for companies to find talent in this area, which is fundamental for the development and sale of health products. Despite the obstacles, Clarisa commented that her company has been able to grow, with 30% more employees in the last year. The sector has also become more open to collaboration.
Asier Albizu from Biolan Health and Manuel Sánchez-Lagarejo from Bexen Medical also took part in the programme to explain the situation of their company. Asier commented that the company is doing well, but he also mentioned the difficulties of selling in Europe. And he pointed out that one of the reasons why they are doing well is because of their customers outside Europe. The fact is that the deadlines for the few notified bodies, currently less than ten for in vitro diagnostic products, can be up to four years to attend to a company. It is not all bad news as both Biolan Health and Bexen Medical have grown in the last 15 months. In the case of Bexen Medical, they have almost 90 more employees. Both companies have demonstrated their commitment to the SDGs by purchasing components and raw materials in the Basque Country, in the case of Biolan Health, or even bringing a plant from Asia, as in the case of Bexen Medical.
You can get more information and listen to the whole interview on the website of Cadena Ser: https://cadenaser.com/2022/02/15/empresas-vinculadas-al-sector-de-biosalud-en-euskadi-no-hayan-salida-a-sus-productos-en-europa-faltan-certificadores-de-la-agencia-europea-del-medicamento/
Members who have participated (in order of intervention):
Innoprot is a company that provides products and services for screening new drugs. The catalogue ranges from primary cultures to recombinant cell lines and in vitro disease models, including cellular biosensors developed in-house.
About Biolan Health:
Biolan Health is a company located in Bizkaia that develops, manufactures and markets Point of Care (POC) devices aimed at rapid, simple and reliable diagnosis and monitoring of diseases, primarily based on enzymatic biosensors and lateral flow immunosensors. To this end, it has an activity licence from the Spanish Agency of Medicines and Medical Devices and ISO 13485 certification, thereby ensuring the quality of its products and compliance with all legal requirements.
It is part of the BIOLAN Group, a world leader in the field of biosensor research (biosensorics) applied to food quality and safety, which is expanding its technology to the health sector with innovative solutions to respond to real needs.
Sobre Bexen Medical:
Located in Hernani, the company has over 42 years of experience in the health sector and manufactures single-use medical devices. It is also a pioneer in managing and storing biological samples at -80ºC, with 3 sites in Spain (Hernani, Santiago and Madrid). The incorporation of the new surgical mask production plant in 2020 will make it the largest national manufacturer of surgical masks.