By Yazhen Zhang, Power News from Taichung
It’s a great leap for Taiwan’s 3D medical printing with a promising prospect for assistive device in central Taiwan. iABC and its medical system, with research and clinical advantages, encompassing the medical and related engineering expertise of China Medical University and Asia University develop its own innovative 3D medical printed products …
An opening ceremony was held on 2018/3/26 together by iABC and its medical system, Hiwin Technologies Corp., Ever Young BioDimension, Plastics Industry Development Center, Taichung City Government, the Central Bureau of MOST, and Biomedical Development Center, announcing the integration of 3D medical printed and assistive devices, and jointly pledging to collaborate for the southbound development.
Facing with industrial upgrading in the 21st century, last year the government presented the Biomedical Innovation Implementation Plan, centering on linking the future, international, the domestic to give a new blueprint for innovative biomedical R&D in order to speed up resources integration and cooperations and push forward Taiwan’s biomedical development. The assistive devices, a well developed industry in central Taiwan, are included in the plan to help upgrade the industry towards producing medical devices with high added value.
3D printing has vastly adopted in the medical industry because it can directly produce end products and has an advantage of being able to customize high-end medical devices. Moreover, 3D printing is an essential fundamental technique for smart assistive devices, hence becomes the development focus for countries around the world.
As President Chang-Hai Tsai indicated, medicine, medical devices and medical and health care are becoming more and more important while the global aging issue accelerates. iABC has built up the first 3D medical printing research center in Taiwan, hoping to, through doctors’ clinical experience, bring out the industry and university’s own specialties to expedite the convergence of academy, research, and industry so that medical devices developed in Taiwan can be used on patients for proper care and treatment.
Superintendent Der-Yang Cho of China Medical University Hospital also explained that for the last 3 years, the 3D Medical Printing Center has assisted doctors of dentistry, orthopedics, thoracic surgery, assistive device rehabilitation, and neurosurgery to successfully help over 350 patients by greatly reducing the surgery time by one-third. In the future there are thinking of using it on divisions such as dermatology, otolaryngology, organ transplantation in order to enhance medical quality.
Ever Young BioDimension, a joint venture by Aurora Group and China Medical University Hospital, signed a contract with Materialise, a large Belgium 3D printing design company, to bring in the Mimics 3D medical design solution. Also, by way of the technical cooperation with the system of iABC, GM Min-nan Chang are confident to achieve a 1 billion sales target on 3D customized medical printing in the Asia-Pacificn region in 3 years. He is also optimistic about the potential for the biomedical industry and 3D medical printed devices in central Taiwan, and has started planning to move in to Central Taiwan Science Park to go along with the government’s plan for minimally invasive medical devices and smart assistive devices.
In 2016, the government started the 5 Plus 2 Industry Innovation Plan as the drive force for the growth of Taiwan’s next-generation industry to inject new energy into the economy. As for the integration of innovation clusters, starting from Nangkang connecting the biomedical medicine corridor from north to south to merge the local medical device and medicine clusters. Among them, smart assistive device has been named the development focal point for the central bio-technology corridor.
As GM Hue-Chin Tsai of Hiwin Technologies Corp., a large domestic industrial robot company, indicated, Hiwin Technologies has, other than focusing on TBI motion, linear guide, and single axis robots, stepped into the development of high-end medical devices, smart assistive devices of its own brand, including robotic upper limb exercise equipment, hygiene robotic system, robotic endoscope holder, and robot assisted surgery system, and so on. A joint R&D center was set up together with China Medical University in 2015 to better the medical quality.
Director Yao-Tzu Lu of the Economy Development Bureau, Taichung, stated that “Capital of Life, City of Innovation” is the goal the city has been gradually striving for till now since it was first brought up in the 2016 municipal technology report, suggesting integration of medical care and smart assistive device made with precision machinery. Through the joint efforts of the industry, academy, medical industry, and the city of Taichung, it surely will soon carry the biomedical industry cluster’s into effect, and bring along the rising of central Taiwan to be the driving force to reenergize Taiwan’s economy.
Director Ming-Huan Chen of the Central Bureau of MOST said, it is part of the plan for the government to increase the industrial economical value by expediting the development of the bio-technology industry. The Central Taiwan Science Park is especially suitable for, except the precision machinery, bio-technology, communications, photoelectric, and integrated circuit industries, the development of the medical devices industry because of its convenient location with the neighboring academy, research, industry, administration, and hospitals, where vital energy and clusters are concentrated and complete that gives it the advantages to develop the industry. Today, with the merging of China Medical University Hospital’s 3D printing technique for clinical applications and the industrial strength of assistive devices manufacturers in the central Taiwan, it is believed that there will be plenty of business opportunities in the potential market.
According to Business Monitor International, BMI, a research firm, the medical care market will reach up to US$503.4 billion. The demand for medical devices will rise as a result of the aging society, and especially the market of 3D printing related and orthopedic transplantation products are go to play a significant role.
As addressed by Dr. Ho Chaw Sing of National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC), Singapore, they are delighted to see the rapid development growth of 3D printed medical devices and the convergence of the academy, research, industry, and hospitals in Taiwan. The team from NMIC made this trip to iABC to watch and learn from the consortium, start a mutual cooperative relationship on developing 3D medical printing and minimally invasive medical and smart assistive devices.
The opening ceremony at China Medical University was jointly held today (3/26) by iABC and its medical system, Hiwin Technologies Corp., Ever Young BioDimension, Plastics Industry Development Center, Taichung City Government, the Central Bureau of MOST, and Biomedical Development Center, announcing the integration of 3D medical printed and assistive devices, and jointly pledging to collaborate for the southbound development. Participants include Director Yao-Tzu Lu of the Economy Development Bureau, Taichung,Director Ming-Huan Chen of the Central Bureau of MOST, CAO Tz-Hua Lin of Biomedical Development CenterPresident, President Chang-Hai Tsai of China Medical University and Hospitals, President Wen-Hua Lee of China Medical University, President Superintendent Der-Yang Cho of China Medical University Hospital President Jeffrey Tsai of Asia University, Assistant General Manager Yue-Ling Qu of Hiwin Technologies Corp., President Li-Hue Young of Ever Young BioDimension,GM Yao-Kuei Shao of Plastics Industry Development Center, GM Shi-Chen Lai of Renishaw Taiwan, GM Tsun-Nan Chi of General Integration Technology, GM Chien-Kuang Chung of DEH Lab, Vice GM Chien-Fu Lin of ThinTech Materials Technology, Assistant Manager Chien-Hong Soon of UL Taiwan, KPMG, Young Optics, National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster, and its ranking representatives. They were together to witness Taiwan’s resolutions to push forward 3D medical printing, and it was milestone for the smart assistive devices to head southbound.
As CAO Tz-Hua Lin of Biomedical Development Center indicated, the industry development implementation plan covers biotech, pharmaceutical, medical devices, and health care. The aim is to prepare Taiwan to become a powerhouse of the biotech and pharmaceutical industry in Asia-Pacific region by linking domestic players, rising technology to eventually compete in the international arena. There are 295 operators in the featured biotech cluster in central Taiwan, including areas such as assistive devices, precision machinery, rising biotech and pharmaceutical. Biomedical Development Center is aware of the rapid development of the biotech industry, and they will do everything to assist to put together a complete industry chain of research, manufacturing, and applications so that they can market their products internationally.
There were presentations at the hands-on area, including medical image processing systems, Stratasys Objet 30 3D printer, minimally invasive surgery assistive devices, and bioguides for orthognathic and orthopedic surgeries, a vivid display of Taiwan’s energy in 3D medical printing, which draws much attention from the visiting Singaporean group, and turns out to be an excellent opportunity for international marketing. The industry innovation cluster in central Taiwan is expanding. It is no doubt that, under the cooperations between the academy, industry, research, hospitals, and government, the local industry is sure to take root, grow, and expand, creating more smart assistive devices of high-added value, and put Taiwan’s biotech industry in the international limelight.