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The Launch of Taiwan Integrated Biomedical Industrial Center

ITRI at TAIROS 2020.

Video of TIBIC.

With the support of the Technology Development Program of Department of Industrial Technology (DoIT), Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA), the Taiwan Integrated Biomedical Industrial Center (TIBIC) was launched on ITRI’s Kuang-Fu Campus in late November. The British-Swedish multinational biopharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has also committed to establish its Future Healthcare Laboratory in this testing and verification field for smart medical technologies.

TIBIC is built to facilitate dialogues among different stakeholders in the biomedical sector. Here vendors are able to verify and adjust their products, while clinicians can learn the latest medical technologies and provide feedback. This can make diagnosis and treatment more accurate and efficient, thus improving the quality of telemedicine and home care. Meanwhile, it will spark more multidisciplinary collaboration and create new value and market opportunities.

TIBIC includes laboratories dedicated to the study of human factors and usability, surgical robot verification, and future healthcare, as well as simulation rooms for computed tomography, hospital general wards, operating rooms and ICUs. To summarize, these clinical testing fields highlight the following areas:

  • Verification: Hospital scenarios simulation and repeated technology verification are expected to accelerate product development and resolve the pain points of both medical device makers and clinicians. The center can also offer quantitative human-machine interaction UX verification reports (IEC 62366), helping manufacturers shorten their product time-to-market.
  • Intelligentization: ICT technologies are integrated with medical devices to develop smart systems such as an image-guided surgical system that helps surgeons perform faster and more precisely.
  • Ecosystem: TIBIC aims to link industries vertically and horizontally to build a complete biomedical ecosystem, which will promote further development of Taiwan’s smart medical technologies and advanced medical devices, and help related companies tap into the global market.

ITRI is eager to invite the international community to exploit the advantages of TIBIC. The participation of AstraZeneca signifies a good start. The company’s excellent technological capacity and brand visibility will also be a great input for ITRI to lead domestic industries in developing advanced medical devices, new drugs and digital health solutions.

TIBIC opened on ITRI’s Kuang-Fu Campus in late November.

TIBIC opened on ITRI’s Kuang-Fu Campus in late November.

Smart technology for surgical robots can be tested at TIBIC. TIBIC’s Computed Tomography Simulation Room can simulate hepatic tumor ablation by combining a pre-surgery guided imagery system and robotic arms. ITRI’s Handheld Ultrasound System is suitable for use in medical inspection in remote areas. ITRI developed the world’s first single-lens 3D endoscopy imaging module, making surgeons faster and more precise.

As ITRI’s Executive Vice President Alex Y.M. Peng suggests, the COVID-19 pandemic along with the growth in 5G, AI, and big data technology has accelerated the development of tech-assisted healthcare and telemedicine. Thus there will be more medical devices featuring mobility, compact handheld design, and home use. ITRI, he stresses, has been striving to work with industry to integrate R&D results from various disciplines including biomedicine, electronics/optoelectronics, ICT, AI, and machinery, aiming to provide total solutions and service models that satisfy market demands. He believes TIBIC will serve as an international platform that allows partners across different sectors to join ITRI to foster diversified biomedical innovations and co-create a new industrial cluster for smart medical technologies.