Press release: Israeli innovations for Berlin patients – Charité, BIH, and Israel plan to collaborate

Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and the Berlin Institute of Health (BIH) intend to work closely with the Israel Innovation Authority to improve patient care through innovative healthcare ideas. The Israel Innovation Authority will provide extensive funding to selected projects in order to support the early clinical work of Israeli start-ups at the Charité.

“We are very proud of this cooperation, especially because Israel has the highest concentration of start-ups in the world, making it one of the leading players in the international digital health scene,” said Professor Axel Radlach Pries, Dean of Charité and interim Chairman of the BIH Executive Board, on the occasion of signing the memorandum of understanding for the cooperation. “The program we have developed will help us ensure that patients benefit from innovations as quickly as possible – while also giving real substance to the BIH’s translational slogan ‘From Research to Health.’”

Israel’s Ambassador in Germany, H.E. Jeremy Issacharoff, said on the occasion of signing the cooperation agreement: “Germany is Israel’s most important trading partner in the European Union. The agreement between the Charité, the BIH, and the Israel Innovation Authority represents a major milestone in strengthening economic relations between Germany and Israel in the fields of medical technology and digital health.” Aharon Aharon, CEO of the Israel Innovation Authority, added: “Being able to conduct clinical trials and pilot projects in the world’s leading hospitals and healthcare institutions is an important step in helping Israeli start-ups and companies move beyond the research and development phase.”

The partnership is an outcome of the longstanding cooperation between the Charité, the BIH, and Israel’s trade office in Berlin. The signed memorandum of understanding outlines a pilot program in which medical technologies and products from Israeli start-ups are jointly developed and clinically tested at Berlin’s Charité university hospital. BIH Innovations, the joint technology transfer unit of the BIH and the Charité, will provide expertise and support on business development matters. The pilot program will be launched by late 2019 and will offer selected Israeli companies a comprehensive, structured program for partnering with the Charité and the BIH.

Dr. Sein Schmidt, head of the BIH’s Clinical Research Unit at the Charité and coordinator of the Israeli-German collaboration at the university hospital, welcomed the cooperation and is looking forward to the ideas Israel will bring to Berlin: “The first joint projects will get underway in 2020. We are excited about collaborating with one of the world’s leading countries in terms of innovation and start-up culture. We are in good company with the Israel Innovation Authority and its international partners – such as the Mayo Clinic and Thomas Jefferson University in the United States and the Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation (CABHI) in Canada – thus enabling us to give new momentum to biomedical research and patient care. This cooperation is the first of its kind in Europe, and I am convinced that Berlin, the Berlin Institute of Health, and the Charité are the right partners for this endeavor.”