Talent pool inventing the health of the future
Digital health, also known as e-health, is located at the crossroads of a number of disciplines. It uses information and communication technologies with the aim of improving health and health systems. In Switzerland, it mobilizes those involved in the digital sectors (entrepreneurs, educational and research institutes) and medical sectors (patients, medical and nursing staff, industrials, care establishments, insurance companies, and universities). Many Swiss companies, either historic ones such as La Poste and Swisscom or scale-ups like Sophia Genetics and MindMaze, are making breakthroughs into this high-growth market. The more recent companies are standing out from the pack with applications focused on diagnostics, aids for medical decision-making, and the improvement of doctor–patient relations.
The canton of Vaud is located in what is known as "Health Valley" and has become a world-renowned platform for digital health. Its public hospitals, in particular the CHUV, and private clinics such as those in the Swiss Medical Network are renowned for their cutting-edge medicine and have long attracted patients from beyond the borders of Switzerland.
These care establishments work hand in hand with the many engineers and researchers in the field of life sciences, either at local educational institutes, the UNIL, or the EPFL. Synergies have also been created with major companies and start-ups in the Lake Geneva area. Testament to the success of the companies in "Health Valley" is that in 2016 they raised some 600 million francs from business angels and investment funds.