Innovation in Health is the subject of an article written by the President of Braile Biomédica, Patricia Braile, published in Jornal Diário da Região on November 12, 2021.

Link to the publication on the Journal's website, click here.

Check it out in full:

Innovation in Health

* By Patricia Braile

Talking about research, development and innovation (RD&I) and health in Brazil is a challenging topic! I would say that it can be exhausting and that it can discourage us because we don't see a way out, because we don't see the will or focus. Our country, unfortunately, is still in the process of understanding this issue and its importance for the construction of a Nation.

If we seek to understand the nature of development in countries, we will see that it is intrinsically linked to how much this country has valued and invested in RD&I.

The mentality that still persists in our country brings remnants of “Colonial Brazil” and deeply stains Brazilians' self-esteem. We still have the fallacy that we are less capable than other peoples and that what we develop and produce abroad is better than what we develop and produce here. Confidence in ourselves needs to be encouraged, valued and put into practice.

At the heart of the problem, we can find several reasons, but we chose here to say that it lies in the lack of a strategic plan for RD&I in the area of ​​health, on the part of the Brazilian State. We are not talking about Governments. Governments are transient, in and out all the time. We are talking about the State and the State Strategy.

The Covid 19 pandemic has opened wide: We are a country dependent on others in healthcare. And what was the lesson we learned? A country aware of what is relevant to its independence invests and encourages innovation and the high-tech industry is strategic. A Nation cannot be totally dependent on the “good will” of other countries, a Nation needs to invest in itself and in its own competences and capacities.

In Brazil, with the exception of some “islands of excellence”, innovating is very difficult and lonely. It's almost a medieval adventure. There are years and years of struggle and piles and piles of papers and files that come and go in an almost endless process.

The latest IBGE Innovation Survey showed that Brazilian companies invest only 1.95% of sales revenue in RD&I (PINTEC 2017). It was also recorded that only 26% of innovative companies benefit from some type of support for innovation. Despite the discouraging numbers and the problems and obstacles, we cannot deny that there are currently excellent programs and smart and effective initiatives for the development of innovation.

EMBRAPII (Brazilian Company for Industrial Research and Innovation) is an example of a partnership model that works and needs to be multiplied and multifaceted. We also have Law 11,196/05 (“Lei do Bem”), which makes it possible to grant tax benefits to companies that carry out RD&I.

The technological, personal and financial union and partnership between the State, Technological Institutes and Companies is a format that works. It's important to understand that you don't get very far alone. It is sharing that it multiplies, it is in the union of efforts that genius shines.

We will then continue to work tirelessly so that the minds of all involved are open and ready to break the barriers and shackles that bind us to bureaucracies and outdated and closed models. The construction of a Strategic RD&I Plan for our country is the central point so that it can open up to opportunities and progress and, thus, find our way to invest in what is most intelligent in each one of us!

“To be great, be whole: nothing Thy exaggerates or excludes. Be all in each thing. Put how much you are At the least you do. So in each lake the whole moon Shines, because it lives high.” Fernando Pessoa.