Improving Healthcare While Creating High-value Jobs
Through our Life Sciences Commercialization Strategy Ontario is investing in The Health Technology Exchange (HTX), an organization with a solid track record of helping Ontario health technologies companies grow and prosper. The investment will help HTX partner with innovative companies, research institutions and health providers to develop cutting-edge health technologies that can be marketed to the world.
TWO NEW PROGRAMS
As part of the province's new Life Sciences Commercialization Strategy, Ontario is investing up to $21.4 million over five years to support two new HTX programs with a total project cost of over $78 million: the Health Technology Commercialization Program (HTCP) and the Medical and Assistive Technology Ecosystem Support Services (MATESS) program.
HTCP will help further technology development, commercialization and hospital procurement of MAT, while MATESS will facilitate partnerships, share knowledge, provide training on export practices and promote Ontario's medical and assistive technologies (MAT) sector internationally.
The two programs will reach across the province. They will act as a pipeline to connect new knowledge and ideas in our universities and colleges with Ontario's rapidly emerging MAT industry and healthcare practitioners.
MEDICAL AND ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES (MAT) SECTOR
The global MAT market is worth $250 billion. The MAT sector in Ontario is strong and growing. An estimated 700 MAT companies employ more than 22,000 Ontarians and generate about $4 billion in revenues.
The MAT sector includes a wide range of medical diagnostic, imaging, therapeutic, assistive and rehabilitative products. A robust MAT sector can help improve healthcare delivery, treatment methods, patient outcomes, quality of life, and access to healthcare in rural and remote locations -- in addition to reducing costs to healthcare institutions.
The economic benefits are also enormous. In Ontario, each additional $1 billion in manufactured MAT-sector goods and services represents about 4,000 jobs for highly qualified personnel. Building a knowledge economy around healthcare technologies increases export sales and attracts researchers and start-up companies from other areas.
HEALTH TECHNOLOGY EXCHANGE (HTX)
Since 2004, HTX has successfully helped about 45 companies and 21 publicly funded research institutions develop products, conduct clinical trials, validate technologies and get these new home-grown technologies into hospitals. Together, these investments have leveraged a total of $16 million in additional support.
ONTARIO LIFE SCIENCES COMMERCIALIZATION STRATEGY
Ontario's $161-million Life Sciences Commercialization Strategy combines existing and new Ontario life sciences initiatives into a comprehensive and coordinated plan.
The province aims to be the best place in the world to take innovative bio-medical discoveries and turn them into new products and services that address unmet patient needs by capitalizing on world-class talent, research capacity and collaborative spirit.
The Strategy will have four fundamental pillars:
I. Attracting and nurturing scientific excellence and talent
II. Facilitating greater collaboration
III. Addressing financing challenges, and
IV. Improving international marketing and promotion.
THE STRATEGY'S INITIATIVES
To begin with, several new and existing initiatives will be bundled as components to this new Strategy. Key initiatives will include:
- Support for the medical and assistive devices sector
- Support for early-stage Ontario biotechnology firms
- New infrastructure for clinical trials, and
- Support to commercialize genomics research.
And, provincial funding will be used to leverage industry and federal government funding.
Please see Ontario's Life Sciences Commercialization Strategy for comprehensive information on these and several other Strategy initiatives.