TAIPEI, Taiwan – Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) together with industry partners have established the “Taiwan Eye Health Industry Platform” to connect ophthalmology industry resources in Taiwan and grasp global business opportunities, from technological research and development to products’ hitting the market and from detection and diagnosis to medical care.
ITRI Executive Vice President Alex Y. M. Peng pointed out that the population ratio of people with myopia in Taiwan is the highest in the world with 9 out of 10 people suffering from near-sightedness and nearly 3 out of 10 suffering from severe myopia. In addition, there are over 340,000 patients with glaucoma, and this number is expected to exceed 450,000 in 2020. ITRI is responding to this trend by seeking out a niche point for the eye health industry.
Unlike the past approach where R&D was delegated to single technologies or equipment, they are now establishing a platform to assist in industrial development and expansion into new markets. One example is the development of a complete active vision inspection box to facilitate the movement of ophthalmic testing medical services out of hospitals and into the general community. In addition, an identification system for diabetic fundus lesions utilizes AI and deep learning to carry out comprehensive retinopathy interpretations in order to assist medical care staff in making immediate diagnoses.
Alex Y. M. Peng also stated that he hopes that this cross-domain integrated platform will promote communication between industry, the government, and doctors and increase the development of the ophthalmology industry in Taiwan. He also believes that in the future small and medium sized enterprises should primarily be export-oriented in their output service systems. Furthermore, the European and American markets have become self-contained and difficult to enter, whereas emerging countries still have room for development; therefore, there are opportunities to enter into those markets.