Singapore Biodesign Releases White Paper on Diabetes in Asia

On August 1st, Singapore Biodesign released a new white paper on Asia’s growing diabetes epidemic, a mounting public health crisis that already impacts over 240 million people across the region. The paper, which will be the first in a series on healthcare innovation in Asia, is available for download here.

The paper is based on research and insights assembled during the 2018 Singapore-Stanford Biodesign Fellowship Programme, which sponsored four aspiring innovators—Andrew Chou, Shanaz Rauff, Scott Wong and Hanzhong Zhang—to be immersed in the healthcare settings in Shanghai, Jakarta, and Singapore to better understand unmet needs relating to diabetes and its management. The paper examines the unique epidemiological and socioeconomic factors driving the disease in Asia. It also highlights opportunities for digital health innovation in the region.

A key message from the paper is that solutions developed in the West may face significant challenges to adoption in the Asian context due to significant differences in healthcare systems design, culture, and epidemiology. It shows why digital health technologies must be tailored to local circumstances and designed for the unique needs of patients in a given country or demographic group. It draws upon extensive research and original observations from the field to identify specific areas of need in three Asian countries. 

The paper builds upon the insights that were showcased on 5 December 2018 at the Singapore Biodesign Thought Leaders Series, an annual event hosted by Singapore Biodesign that brings together stakeholders from across the healthcare innovation ecosystem to share knowledge and case studies on key issues in Asia. It is the first in a series that will cover other clinical themes being explored by the Singapore Biodesign Fellows, as well as the broader community of health technology innovators and clinicians in Asia.

The next Thought Leaders Series event will be held on October 7, 2019 and focus on Ophthalmology in Asia. The event will feature presentations from this year’s cohort of Singapore Biodesign Fellows, who are currently researching ophthalmology trends in China and Indonesia, as well as global experts in ophthalmology from the United States, China and Singapore. Please watch this space for more details on registration.

About Singapore Biodesign

Modelled after the established Biodesign Programme at Stanford University, Singapore Biodesign is a capability development initiative that aims to train and nurture the next generation of healthtech innovators for Asia. We are a dedicated talent development and knowledge resource for health technology innovation, riding on the robust biodesign methodology and our wide-ranging international network to place and equip talent for critical startup and innovation roles so as to accelerate projects towards commercialization and startup creation.

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