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I am excited about technology developments and entrepreneurship in medicine

04. 01. 2023

Through 7 modules and 5 bonus courses, the SCI FI programme gave young researchers the skills needed to transition and thrive as an innovator in the healthcare industry. Now that the course is over, we bring the interview with young researcher Albert Štěrba.

The first question that came up was, why did you, Albert, sign up for this course in the first place? „I applied to the course because I wanted to broaden my knowledge about innovation and entrepreneurship in medicine. These topics have been close to my heart since my medical studies, during which time I worked for a medical startup in Oxford, UK. And that experience got me so excited about technology developments in the healthcare field that I am still drawn to it today.“

What did you work on during the course? „As part of our international team, we were looking at how to improve the long-term care of patients after spinal cord injury. That is, of those who, in most cases, cannot walk and have lost sensation in a part of their body, thus resulting in a range of not merely health complications, such as bedsores, urinary infections, or psychological problems. There is a shortage of medical and non-medical staff and bed capacities in the healthcare system, hence the need to effectively meet the patients´ needs and properly involve them in their own self-care at home, even with the use of available technological innovations.” 

Next, we asked Albert how he liked the course overall and how did he like working in a team of random international students. He replied: „The whole three-month programme was quite intensive. In addition to the work on the project itself, we had numerous online lectures, seminars, and online calls with our mentors every week. I was the only Czech among the course participants, but that didn't bother me. On the contrary, working in an international team with people from all over Europe was enriching and inspiring. Moreover, my colleagues and I happened to be a very good fit, and we succeeded in solving all tasks and challenges in a really constructive and substantive way. Coming from different working and cultural backgrounds, I witnessed firsthand how everyone thought about and looked at things a bit differently, which I believe helped us come up with novel, innovative solutions.“

The penultimate question focused on the biggest benefit the course had brought him. According to Albert: „The number one asset for me personally is definitely the friendships and contacts with incredibly active people all across Europe. Benefit number two is the know-how of how to practically get from an idea through an innovative process to, in an ideal scenario, a successful business plan.“ 

The last question for Albert was: Would you recommend the program to colleagues and classmates? Why? 
Albert replied: „I highly recommend this course to all those of you who like technology alongside science or clinical practice, and are interested in how to bring these to the market, to healthcare providers and patients, or how to communicate even seemingly complex things clearly and understandably in a business environment. In this case, I am convinced that you will benefit greatly from the course, with no regrets thereafter.“  

At the beginning of September 2022, the SCI FI (From Scientists to Innovators for Industry programme) started. Gathering 41 young researchers of 19 nationalities, 18 mentors from the industry and 7 case providers at the Medical University of Lodz in Poland. Through 7 modules and 5 bonus courses, the SCI FI programme gave young researchers the skills needed to transition and thrive as an innovator in the healthcare industry. 

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