Despite its miniscule size, Luxembourg has managed to specialize in three key areas and now has a strong claim to be a global leader in personalized healthcare, e-health and data security, and pharma logistics and air freight.
“In championing personalized health, the Luxembourg authorities are indicating that they are both visionary and ready to move with the times.”
Andreas Kremer, ITTM
Luxembourg placed personalized medicine right at the top of their health agenda for their period at the helm of the rotating European presidency in 2015. “We are one of the strongest proponents of a targeted and maximally effective healthcare approach that ensures that each individual patient receives the optimum drug for his or her needs, at the best possible moment and at the correct dosage. We believe that personalized public health is not just the preserve of the affluent, but the baseline and foundations of a high-performance and sustainable healthcare system which is why we have made it a guiding concept that underpins our national health vision,” proclaims Health Minister Lydia Mutsch. Many private actors have also warmly applauded this stance. “Disease is not solely driven by genetic make-up, but rather the confluence of gene combinations and external environmental impacts. The future of healthcare is less about pharmaceutical companies providing new products and more about diverse actors working in concert to define integrated solutions. In championing personalized health, the Luxembourg authorities are indicating that they are both visionary and ready to move with the times,” reflects ITTM managing director, Andreas Kremer.
E-health and Data Security
With its robust legacy in data management and cyber security within the financial services sector, Luxembourg clearly has much to contribute to the definition of a new digital agenda for healthcare. “Aside from the ready availability of competent professionals, we possess an excellent data and ICT infrastructure, and considerable opportunities exist just so long as we can effectively transfer data management assets and analytics experience from the finance sector into healthcare,” notes Luxinnovation’s CEO Jean-Paul Schuler. “Security is becoming ever more important to the health industry, not only from a health and safety standpoint, but also from a fraud prevention perspective, because, unlike credit card information, health data such as genetic profiles tend to be fixed throughout a person’s life and cannot be modified. Unique institutions like the Luxembourg Center for Security, Reliability and Trust (SNT), will thus prove to be valuable in defining the way ahead as digital disruption becomes normalized.”
Pharma Logistics and Air Freight
The Grand Duchy is well on the way to positioning itself as a prime logistics air freight hub in Europe for the pharmaceutical and healthcare industry by offering fully compliant end-to-end temperature-controlled supply chain solutions. Not only has the country’s air freight hub been reinforced with the opening of LuxairCARGO’s dedicated Pharma and Healthcare Centre at Luxembourg’s international airport, but the country has initiated an innovative project that renders its air freight hub fully Good Distribution Practice (GDP) compliant, qualified and certified according to the latest World Health Organization (WHO) and EU GDP guidelines. Moreover, last year, first-of-a-kind memorandums of understanding were signed between lux-Airport and counterparts in Hong Kong and Shanghai to establish GDP-standard pharma trade lanes as part of a worldwide distribution network. “I am convinced this is a very interesting and unique development for shippers of valuable pharma shipments, and that it will stimulate traffic between Shanghai, the world’s 3rd largest cargo airport, and Luxembourg,” predicted Lux-Airport CEO, Johan Vanneste in reference to the latter agreement. “The pharmaceutical industry is very important to us not necessarily in terms of tonnage – 30,000 tons or 4 per cent of our business operations per year – but in the fact that it provides us with our own niche market. We are today considered as a world specialist in healthcare cargo and the benchmark for other companies to follow,” adds Laurent Jossart, executive vice president of Luxair Cargo.
Writer: Louis Haynes