Director, Irish Medical Devices Association (IE)
Sharon Higgins is director of the Irish Medical Devices
Association (IMDA) a role that she has held since January 2000.
IMDA represents the interests of medical technology companies
within the Irish Business and Employers Confederation (IBEC).
Ireland is the highest per capita employer of medical technology
employees across Europe. IMDAs vision is that Ireland will be a
globally significant medical technology hub and the location of
choice for the industry due to our expertise and pro-business
At a national level Sharon represents IBEC and IMDA on the
(Irish) Life Science Alliance and is currently the chair of the Irish
Convergence Council. She also plays a key role on the Irish
Medical Technology Code of Ethics taskforce.
At an international level, Sharon represents IMDA on Eucomeds National Association
Network (NAN) and chairs the Eucomed SME Taskforce. Sharon represented the views of
SMEs across Europe in her role as a member of the high-level steering group established by
the European Commission on the 'European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy
Before IMDA, Sharon held a number of other senior roles held within IBEC including
technical directorships of Pharmachemical Ireland, the Irish Chemical Marketers Association,
the Services Council and has also practised as a human resources executive. Before joining
IBEC, Sharon was employed as a validation engineer for a number of years.
from the University of Limerick with a Bachelors and Masters of Science (research) in 1991
and 1993 respectively.
SMEs - The Life Blood of Med Tech Innovation - Bridging the Border Among Decision Makers ( 913KB)
Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are the lifeblood of the medical technology
industry. Research in the medical technology industry, which typically occurs at the bedside
not at the bench, is usually a result of small or micro collaborations between health
professionals, academia and SMEs.
This research model brings rapid innovation, which
quickly tackles current and emerging medical needs. This innovation can only be good news
for under-pressure European healthcare systems as there is clear evidence that more
effective treatments are capable of delivering clear benefits; reduced hospital stays (with an
associated reduction in cost of treatment); better outcomes, and faster rehabilitation and
return to society.
Sharon will present a case study showing how this works in reality and also identify
recommendations to support the SME community and healthcare model.