Portugal is one of four countries covered by EIT Health InnoStars. EIT Health’s Portuguese partners include the University of Coimbra as a Core Partner, Coimbra Hospital and University Centre (CHUC), Instituto Pedro Nunes, Glintt, University of Lisbon, North Lisbon University Hospital Center (CHULN), NOVA University Lisbon as Associate Partners, Bicant Park and Beta-i as Network Partners. In addition, two universities – the University of Evora and the University of Porto are the EIT Health Hubs, stimulating regional communities.
With the main office in Budapest, Coimbra is the third branch office of EIT Health InnoStars in Europe, after Łódź and Naples.
“Our presence in Portugal reinforces the work done so far with the main players who wish to shape the future of healthcare in Portugal and Europe. I would like to extend my thanks to EIT Health’s Partners in Portugal, who have been working with us to address some of the most pressing challenges in healthcare”, said Ferenc Pongracz, Regional Director of EIT Health InnoStars, during the opening event.
More than 50 students and healthcare professionals have graduated from the educational programmes EIT Health and its Partners offers. In addition, more than 30 Portuguese start-ups have received support from EIT Health. These innovative companies have already raised approx—350 million euros in external funding and nearly 10 million euros in grants. The success stories include Clynx, doDoc, iLof, Nu-Rise, BestHealth4U, C-mo Medical Solutions, and HydrUStent, to name a few.
The Portuguese innovation community is also recognised for leading some of the most important pan-European education projects, such as the EIT Health Ageing PhD School coordinated by the University of Coimbra. This international doctoral programme brings together academic and non-academic partners to foster international and cross-sector training of a new generation of PhD specialists. Participants gain real-world experiences, and the EIT label supplements their University PhD diploma. Awarded by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), the EIT Label is a certificate of quality and excellence for educational programmes focused on innovation, entrepreneurship, creativity and leadership.
“Portugal has much to offer in terms of innovative ideas and talented, ambitious entrepreneurs and innovation experts. Together with Partners, we help build the ecosystem and facilitate collaboration between academia, business, start-ups and research centres. The strength lies in the community, which is open to working together on the most important healthcare challenges and contributing to the development of innovations in Portugal in beyond”, underlined Marta Passadouro, Ecosystem Lead for Portugal, EIT Health InnoStars.
“The Portuguese office is the third local office inaugurated by EIT Health InnoStars (after doing so in Naples, Italy and Lodz, Poland). It demonstrates the maturity and consolidation of a truly European Union project, which is built on one vision shared by citizens and a diverse EIT community in Portugal, Italy, Hungary and Poland”, underlined Jorge Figueira, Chairman of the EIT Health InnoStars Supervisory Board, representing the University of Coimbra.
“As of today, the innovation agents in Portugal, no matter if they are EIT Health InnoStars Partners or not, whether they represent companies, universities, start-ups, technology parks, incubators or health units, have an open door and specialised experts in place. The EIT Health Innostars team on the ground is dedicated to establishing collaborations and partnerships of excellence at a global level in healthcare,” added Jorge Figueira.
EIT Health InnoStars, besides branch offices in Poland, Portugal and Italy, has a main office in Budapest.