Why did Metropolia want to set up a test environment?
Eija: We realised that especially early-stage companies, startups and even some projects that are not yet ready for deployment in an authentic hospital environment, need support. Currently, there is a lack of early-stage product development support. Indeed, there is a dire need for low-threshold pre-clinical testing both in Finland and internationally. Metropolia Proof Health meets this need by making its research infrastructure available to such companies. After all, as Finland’s largest university of applied sciences, we have experts in the fields of social and health care, health technology, information technology, design and business administration, as well as digital technologies such as Virtual Reality, IoT, data sciences, automation and robotics. Metropolia Proof Health’s strength lies in its multidisciplinary and scientific cooperation.
When do you feel you have succeeded in your work?
Eija: The most rewarding part of my work is to be involved in making great matches. In other words, connecting the needs of companies with Metropolia’s teachers, researchers and students and supporting these businesses in their first steps. Moreover, we have a wonderful innovative team here at Metropolia and feelings of success are also gained from the accomplishments of my colleagues.
What is your message to a company that would like to do preclinical testing and doesn’t really know where to start?
Eija: A great place to find more information is the Metropolia Proof Health website. Alternatively, you can contact us directly, and we can discuss the potential collaboration, and map out the first steps for preclinical testing together.
What kind of collaboration have you had with Health Capital Helsinki?
Eija: The concept for Metropolia Health Proof has been built in close cooperation with Health Capital Helsinki, making extensive use of their expertise and experience in the health business. This close co-operation continues and we receive important support to advance our concept and our research ecosystem.
Together with Health Capital Helsinki, our aim is to create an internationally networked joint service entity for health tech and wellbeing companies operating in the Uusimaa region, as well as to support research, development and innovation activities in their various stages. That is why we are working closely with the City of Helsinki’s primary health care and social care test environments and special care and diagnostics test environments at HUS Helsinki University Hospital to build common service paths. Here, too, we receive tremendous support from Health Capital Helsinki. Our common goal is to open the right doors and develop the health business in the Helsinki Metropolitan area.