Necessity is the mother of invention. That explains how Israel quickly became one of the world leaders in developing technology suited for desert living. Israel is also the home to countless advancements in medical technology. So, is it the desert that also inspires so much innovation for medical technology?
After all… many diseases that Israeli research may someday cure affect people all over the world, regardless of climate. The story of Israel’s prominence in health and medicine has more to do with the people of Israel. They are a determined nation that looks beyond themselves and finds innovative ways to positively influence the world.
Israel's involvement in humanitarian aid goes beyond medicine, too. Find out more about Israel and My Olive Tree’s participation in humanitarian aid here.
The Value of Life Knows No Boundaries
Israel, as a nation, understands that without their people, they would struggle. They see the big picture and the importance of caring for and protecting each other—whether it’s an IDF soldier, an engineer, or medical personnel.
Where Does Israel’s Medical Innovation Start?
It’s all about a love for learning. Education is highly valued in the Israeli culture, and it shows in their research institutions.
The value of education has provoked determinism through the veins of researchers in the medical field for years. Their universities and schools generate ideas and discoveries that encourage further research, applications, and breakthroughs in everything from bone transplants to infant autism screening.
They take what they learn and continuously build on it. The educational institutions reach out to various industries and subsidiary businesses to get them involved in their research. This close cooperation boosts the economy, promotes rapid medical advancements, and bridges the gap between the research lab and the public by making the latest technology and findings available to the local doctor’s office.
This is how they keep the bigger picture in mind—everyone is involved.
Checks and Balances in Research
To prevent stagnation, and to keep the good of others at the top of the priority list, Israel’s research universities have developed an alliance that unites efforts and knowledge. The Forum of University Research Authority Directors (FURAD) keeps the academic communities connected with partnerships and research projects.
Here’s a list of only some of the top medical discoveries and projects from Israel’s leading universities and research companies:
- Ben Gurion University developed a device that fits like a glove to stimulate nerves and movements in the hands and arms for those who are paralyzed.
- The Hebrew University of Jerusalem developed a small, biodegradable chip that steadily releases chlorhexidine, which treats gum disease.
- Bar-Ilan University developed an electro-optical blood-cell-sorting technology to help detect earlier stages of cancer.
- Hadassah Medical Organization Ltd. in Jerusalem helped develop licensing regulations to ensure best practices for cancer therapies, cardiovascular disorders, medical devices, and much more.
Israeli Universities Are Top of Their Class
Out of the top-ranked universities in the Middle East, Israel claims spots 4 and 6 out of the top 10. Number 1 is Tel Aviv University (141st in the world), which is well known for medicine and research. With 17 teaching hospitals and hundreds of laboratories and research centers, it’s no surprise Tel Aviv University is one of the best in the world. It also attracts talent from all over the globe.
The Israeli government allocates funds specifically for scholarships that go to international students from around the world. The terms of each scholarship vary from country to country. Typically, the scholarship covers at least half of the school’s tuition, which includes monthly allowances and primary health insurance.
Though English is not Israel’s official language (which is Hebrew), it is widely spoken throughout the country and often required to learn in schools. This has made Israel a popular destination for students to come and learn English.
Partnerships with Global Investors
Israel’s economy thrives thanks to partnerships with global partners—especially with the United States, its largest trade partner. But many other countries invest in and partner with Israel. Partly due to its growing and thriving economy, Israel attracts investors from around the world, making the small nation one of the most prolific producers of scientific research studies available. Countries both far and near see the benefits of investing in such a nation that thinks on a global level.
Read more about Israel's global economy here!
One of Israel’s most well-known innovations is stem cell research that has enabled significant advances in rehabilitating spinal injuries and those who are paralyzed. There are also multiple advances in treating cancer, restoring vision, and saving lives from combat-related injuries.
How Does Research and Development Work for the General Public?
As with any valid and reliable research, there are high standards for testing, proof, and safety—especially when dealing with human life. Israel’s government takes testing procedures seriously. They move forward with wisdom at a steady pace, never haste. They consider the needs and protection of others above all else.
The Ministry of Health department in Israel has developed a process that fits with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration standards. This cross-pollination of standards makes approval more efficient and allows the United States to utilize up-to-date technology more quickly.
As you can see, Israel, even amidst the unsettled turmoil in the Middle East, focuses beyond their borders. They keep moving forward, and the rest of the world benefits. This is a nation that has learned from hardships and pain. They understand what sickness and deprivation do to people. And instead of living in the past, they look to the future—a brighter future for the next generation.
Investment is a principle they live by, because they know if they don’t sow seeds for tomorrow, the harvest is dry in the next season.
If you are interested in learning more about the nation of Israel, and how they have grown into an economically independent nation in a matter of decades—go here and learn about their journey!