BreakThrough Study Idea

Tottori University Medical School attached hospital to open innovationMasaru Ueki<Series 2 / complete>

Study Idea

2018.03.13

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"Do whatever is missing in the area" Commit to walking with the area

Charles Darwin, famous for the theory of evolution, said, "The strongest do not survive, the only thing that survives is the one who can change," and the same for companies and organizations. In the present age where information is further advanced, "Heterogeneous fighting fight" beyond industries has been developed, and those who can not respond are forced to be defeated. Indeed, although companies that are said to be long-established stores that last for 100 years will not change their core technologies, they will divert technology well by changes in the times and survive.

According to estimates released by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport in 2007, the population of Tottori prefecture in 2050 are expected to decrease to about 390,000 people. Shimane prefecture of the neighboring prefecture with a deep relationship will fall to about 500,000 people, so even if we compute both prefectures, the population will not reach 1 million. If you leave this situation, the area will decline more. Witnessing such a case, I decided to do anything if there is something missing in the area.

Therefore, we started an attempt to make hospitals as open innovation sites in companies. From this initiative, there was such a feeling that it would be wonderful if the medical equipment was commercialized and even a little employment was born in the area. We focused attention on medical equipment because technology such as cutting which SMEs are good at can be utilized directly. Also, unlike pharmaceuticals, medical devices are advantageous in that development costs can be kept low.

Approximately 300 thousand items of medical equipment in Japan, market size is about 2 trillion yen. The market size of one medicine is huge, nearly 8 trillion yen, but the item is only about 17,000 items, and the development cost is as much as 100 million, so the primary pharmaceutical manufacturer is the leading player. Even if small and medium enterprises fight in the pharmaceutical market, it is evident that their minutes are bad. For SMEs, there is a business opportunity in the medical equipment market.

Collaboration beyond the barriers of medical departments promotes innovation

Nonetheless, it is meaningless for me to lose my efforts. At Tottori University Medical School attached hospital, we hold a "Co-educational course" with tours of medical scene and invited lecturers from 2014 to support manufacturing based on the medical scene.

At first Tottori University School of Medicine Department, hospital staff members were awkward though, they gradually became acquainted with each other as they meet with SMEs staffs every month. "Manufacturing work" has been established at the nursing department and medical equipment from the nursing department was developed. That is the tag installer of the medical site "Tagurin." Watermelon pollination equipment diverted to medical equipment, in addition to prevention of incidents and incident hiatus, it is useful for confirming the accuracy of the drip route. A company that provides software and hardware related to manufacturing developed it. With the development of medical equipment, a new business area was born.

What we are aiming for is not big innovation like the development of artificial heart valves, so to say "innovation 1.1". By combining existing technologies, it is to create new value that we have never had before. Carefully and carefully raising each idea, we will accumulate small success experiences. You may not be able to do big things, but the pleasure of being on the scene where new ones are born is exceptional.

In doing various initiatives, cooperation beyond the barriers of the clinical department is progressing rapidly. There are 39 departments in our hospital, but the atmosphere to create active ideas is fostered. As mentioned in the first column, our hospital has developed 11 products so far, and we are continuing to increase our efforts now. The departments concerned are also diversified, including plastic surgery, internal gastroenterology, internal circulatory medicine, and oral surgery.

Next time I will talk about development cases of medical equipment that I worked on with companies.

< series 2 / complete >


Masaru Ueki
Tottori University Medical School Attached Hospital New Medical Research Promotion Center Professor, Research Practicalization Support Division Medical Doctor
Japan Gastrointestinal Endoscopy Society Specialist / Instructor
Japanese Science Certified Doctor
Japan Liver Society Specialist
Japan Gastroenterology Society Specialist

Born in Tottori prefecture in 1972. Graduated from Department of Medicine, Oita Medical University School of Medicine in 1998, and Graduate School of Tottori University in 2005. Tottori University Medical School Affiliated Hospital Post Graduate Clinical Training Center Lecturer in 2009, Tottori University Medical School Hospital Postgraduate Clinical Training Center Mitsuyoshi Associate Professor in 2012, Tottori University Medical School Hospital Next Generation Advanced Medical Promotion Center Associate Professor in 2012, Tottori University Medical School Hospital Next Generation Advanced Medical Promotion Center Professor, to the present.

◇Main book
"Tips and traps of medical treatment for liver diseases" (Nakayama Bookstore / Ken Ueki) published in January 2015

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