SEOUL, Korea--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Incheon Free Economic Zone (IFEZ), GE Healthcare and Bio Research Complex (BRC) announced today the signing of a five year plan to invest in the establishment of the “GE Global Ubiquitous Health Research and Development Center” (GE Global u-Health R&D Center).
Under the agreement with IFEZ, GE Healthcare, a global leader in transformational medical technologies and services, and BRC, a respected provider of gene analysis technology, will use the facility for research and development activities related to healthcare IT solutions.
“The agreement is a perfect example of a collaboration between the Korean government, a local company like BRC and a global company like GE,” said Sang-soo Ahn, the mayor of the Incheon Metropolitan City in which IFEZ is located. “The establishment of the GE Global u-Health R&D Center will be a triggering event in the expansion of IFEZ’s IT and healthcare infrastructure and the buildup of a research network. We’re hoping IFEZ can position itself as the world’s premier project site that best realizes ubiquitous-Health programs, going forward,” added Ahn.
Healthymagination is GE’s $6 billion commitment to improve health care access, affordability and quality through advanced technologies, research and development.
The Korean government and IFEZ see the establishment of the center as an opportunity to gain advanced clinical knowledge, build professional skills and create jobs through healthcare IT, which is a mainstream green industry. Also, the facilitation of convergence between healthcare technologies and related industries will contribute to the advancement of the domestic IT industry.
Vishal Wanchoo, president and CEO of GE Healthcare IT commented, “The Korean government’s active support and collaboration in u-health related research and development played heavily into our decision to participate. We’re excited about the possibilities ahead.”
“Our healthcare IT technology and products will play a pivotal role in driving our healthymagination vision,” said Karim Karti, president and CEO of GE Healthcare Korea. “We also hope this collaboration can help advance Korea’s healthcare IT industry, acting as a catalyst for professional relationships and job creation.”
“The combination of our achievement in the analysis of Korean gene information and state-of-the-art healthcare IT solutions could lead to personalized healthcare service that reflects an individual’s genetic makeup,” said Uhn Lee, President of BRC. “When an individual’s gene and disease information is used as part of his or her health management,” Lee added, “it could someday lead to accurate diagnosis and effective treatment even before the actual onset of a disease.”
In 2007, GE Healthcare established its first Asia EHR (electronic health records) R&D Center in Korea. It is envisioned that its skilled researchers, clinical expertise and technology will become a part of the research and operation of the GE Global u-Health R&D Center.
About Incheon Free Economic Zone:
Incheon Free Economic Zone (IFEZ) has been designated as the first Free Economic Zone in Korea and the IFEZ is an organization that supports the development of Incheon City to become the hub of international business and a global city with self-sufficiency, enabling optimal business activities.
About Bio Research Complex:
BRC is building capabilities in research and commercialization specialized in medical area, by converging medical science, IT, and BT capabilities of Gil foundation, and also establishing a cooperative network. The complex is creating global cluster through continuous investment in R&D and developing core components and solutions of u-Healthcare, nano bio, bio informatics with Gil Hospital, BRC Genome Center, Gachon Nano-bio R&D Center and IBM’s global R&D Center.
About GE Healthcare:
GE Healthcare provides transformational medical technologies and services that are shaping a new age of patient care. Our broad expertise in medical imaging and information technologies, medical diagnostics, patient monitoring systems, drug discovery, biopharmaceutical manufacturing technologies, performance improvement and performance solutions services help our customers to deliver better care to more people around the world at a lower cost. In addition, we partner with healthcare leaders, striving to leverage the global policy change necessary to implement a successful shift to sustainable healthcare systems.
Our “healthymagination” vision for the future invites the world to join us on our journey as we continuously develop innovations focused on reducing costs, increasing access and improving quality and efficiency around the world. Headquartered in the United Kingdom, GE Healthcare is a $17 billion unit of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE). Worldwide, GE Healthcare employs more than 46,000 people committed to serving healthcare professionals and their patients in more than 100 countries. For more information about GE Healthcare, visit our website at www.gehealthcare.com.
About GE Healthcare Korea
GE Healthcare Korea started as “Samsung Medical Devices” in 1984, when the concept of “healthcare” was still unfamiliar in the country. The company has pioneered the history of the healthcare industry since then. GE Healthcare Korea actively supports and invests in Korea’s healthcare industry, by, for example, operating ultrasound manufacturing facility and R&D center in Seongnam and establishing in December 2007 the EMR R&D center solely operated by Korean manpower.