Israel-Ontario Agreements to Promote Advancements in Life Sciences
$3 Million Agreement Will Position Ontario as a Leader in Focused Ultrasound Technology
Premier Kathleen Wynne visited Toronto Western Hospital today to showcase an Ontario-Israel partnership that is bringing new technology to the province to treat neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease and epilepsy.
This partnership is one of 44 agreements announced during Premier Wynne's mission to Israel and the West Bank. Together, these agreements are valued at over $180 million and are expected to create over 200 jobs in Ontario. The focus of the mission was to spur economic growth and job creation -- particularly in the life sciences, technology and innovation sectors.
The Premier toured the Magnetic Resonance-guided Focused Ultrasound (MRgFUS) Lab at Toronto Western Hospital, which is benefiting from a $3 million Memorandum of Understanding that was signed during the mission.
The agreement, between Israeli-based Insightec and Ontario's University Health Network, will enable Insightec to provide technology to the University Health Network for clinical research and development. This partnership will contribute to making Ontario a world centre of excellence for research and training in the use of focused ultrasound technology and will help create new jobs in Ontario's life sciences sector.
Insightec -- a world leader in focused ultrasound technology -- has developed a unique technology that enables doctors to treat patients suffering from neurological disorders, with no incisions, no implants and no radiation.
Building new relationships and helping businesses compete globally are part of the government's economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario's history and investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.
- The Premier’s first mission to the Middle East, which included a business delegation of around 130 people, ran from May 15 to 20.
- Ontario’s life sciences sector is the largest in Canada. It employs more than 61,000 people in approximately 1,900 firms, and generates $8.3 billion in exports. In 2012, Ontario’s life sciences sector generated more than $38 billion in revenue.
- In September 2015, Ontario established a new Chief Health Innovation Strategist, William Charnetski, to promote the province’s health technology innovation sector and help new products get to market.
- Insightec has two clinics in Toronto, at Toronto Western Hospital and Sunnybrook Hospital.
“This partnership between UHN and Insightec is an exciting opportunity for Ontario to pursue new technology to help people suffering from neurological disorders. It is also an opportunity to position Ontario as a world-leading centre in this field, create jobs and boost the province’s life sciences sector, which is a major contributor to Ontario’s economy.”
“Introducing a disruptive technology to the healthcare system can only be done in tight collaboration between leading academia and industry. It takes years-long effort to research, develop and educate the healthcare system before making it available for the patient’s benefit. We see this initial collaboration as a starting point since the technology has many more potential applications that can benefit additional neurological diseases.”