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Arab Health's new section, Innovation Hub showcases the latest in healthcare artificial intelligence, devices for disease management and home care and telemedicine platforms Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

As technological advances and new products shape the healthcare industry, Arab Health is back with a revamped annual event. A dedicated Innovation Hub takes centre stage at the largest exhibition for healthcare and trade professionals in the Middle East and North Africa this year, which even attracts visitors from the subcontinent.

“Innovation is driving the healthcare industry forward and advances in technologies are creating vast new possibilities and opportunities for the UAE healthcare sector,” says Ross Williams, Exhibition Director of Arab Health. “Healthcare facilities, medical device manufacturers and service providers across the globe are constantly innovating to remain competitive and offer new and improved treatments.”

Through the Innovation Hub, which has evolved from last year’s Personal Healthcare Technology Zone, Arab Health aims to showcase the latest in healthcare technology including artificial intelligence, devices for disease management and home care, accessories for mobile devices, and telemedicine platforms. More than 50 healthcare start-ups and SMEs are expected to present their products and solutions at the hub.

“The Innovation Hub will be the platform for the inaugural Innov8 Talks at Arab Health, which will also host a series of pitch sessions.”

- Ross Williams, Exhibition Director of Arab Health

“The Innovation Hub will also be the platform for the inaugural Innov8 Talks at Arab Health,” Williams adds. “As well as daily free-to-attend discussions led by keynote speakers, Innov8 Talks will also host a series of pitch sessions for the region’s most creative and forward-thinking healthcare start-ups and SMEs to sell their ideas to an esteemed panel of judges who are involved in driving innovation in the UAE.”

Business as usual

Apart from that, it’s business as usual for the 44th edition of the show. Arab Health Congress will feature 11 topical conferences highlighting the advances and challenges in healthcare. More than 4,500 delegates and 250 speakers will attend the four days of the congress.

The main show is expected to welcome 4,250 exhibitors — a growth of 2 per cent over last year — from more than 66 countries and 84,500 visitors. “There are 39 dedicated country pavilions, with international representation remaining robust with many pavilions increasing in size and number of exhibiting companies year-on-year,” explains Williams.

For manufacturers of medical devices and service providers, the show has served as an entry point into the region’s healthcare industry while for dealers and distributors (they made up 37 per cent of the participants in 2018), especially from countries such as the UAE, Saudi Arabia, India, Pakistan and Iran, it has been an ideal place to source new healthcare solutions. With thousands of products on display, organisers hope for more deals to be struck during this edition.

Last year’s Arab Health generated $778 million (Dh2.8 billion) worth of business over four days. With GCC spending in healthcare forecast to reach $104.6 billion in 2022 and the private sector playing a key role, this year’s show shouldn’t be any different.