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Updated Roadmap: New innovations in the health sector aim at wellbeing and competitiveness

Ministry of Economic Affairs and EmploymentMinistry of Education and CultureMinistry of Social Affairs and Health
1.12.2020 8.20
Press release

Research and innovation activities in the health sector will be developed in a target-oriented way in 2020–2023. People’s health and wellbeing will be improved through research and technological development. Steps will also be taken to advance Finland’s international position as a forerunner in health sector research and innovation, investment and new business.

These are the main points of the updated Roadmap for the Health Sector Growth Strategy for Research and Innovation Activities. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment published the updated Roadmap on 1 December 2020. This is already the third Government implementing the strategy.

“The Roadmap will be completed at an exceptional time as the coronavirus pandemic has raised the importance of the health sector. Finland has the opportunity to play a leading role in research, development and innovation in the health sector. We have invested a great deal in research in this field and we want to keep doing it in future,” says Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä.

Roadmap to develop operating environment, competence and cooperation

The Roadmap identifies three interlinked areas of measures — the operating environment, competence, and partnerships and cooperation. The areas contain measures to develop research and innovation activities in the health sector. The measures will be monitored and updated regularly.

Measures include developing funding and regulation in the health sector, investing in continuous learning and skills, and creating new partnership models between the public and private sectors. In addition, legislative projects and establishment of national centres of expertise will be taken forward. Digitalisation and the utilisation of data also play an important role.

“The ongoing pandemic shows the power that the responsible use of data, data aggregation and cooperation between public and private research bodies can have. The prerequisite for all this is the trust created by privacy protection and information security,” says Minister of Science and Culture Annika Saarikko.

“We consider it important that, as the operating environment changes, social aspects and the importance of welfare technology are included in the Roadmap,” says Minister of Family Affairs and Social Services Krista Kiuru.

Coronavirus pandemic creates new growth opportunities for the health sector

The Roadmap predicts the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the health sector’s operating environment and business opportunities. Recovery from the coronavirus pandemic requires, among other things, new innovations and information. New digital practices and skills in accessing services or measuring health, for example, have also taken a major leap forward during the pandemic.

Companies have quickly created new solutions to the challenges created by the situation, in both health care, prevention and other wellbeing services. Some of the services will continue to be used after the pandemic, which will create significant demand around the world.

The updated Roadmap was prepared intersectorally and together with stakeholders. The Health Sector Growth Strategy for Research and Innovation Activities was published in 2014.

Inquiries:

Jenny Hasu, Special Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 504 7213
Anni Kaukoranta, Development Manager, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 504 7072

Annika Saarikko Krista Kiuru Mika Lintilä
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