By Guy Kerpen
Vice President, Head of European Affairs Office, Philips
After graduating in electronic engineering Mr. Kerpen started employment in 1988 at Philips, where he worked in a number of international business positions in various businesses, before moving to his present positions. Mr. Kerpen’s career at Philips was initially in an industrial environment, where he became acquainted with various functional areas such as production, quality, project management and account management. He subsequently became international product manager for DCC (Digital Compact Cassette) Test & Training equipment. In mid-1994 he took up a position as Planning & Strategy manager, in which capacity he worked for two different Business Groups at Philips. In 2000 Mr. Kerpen was given responsibility for Corporate Alliances in the Corporate Strategy department, a position he occupied for a relatively short period of time before moving to his present positions. In his present positions Mr. Kerpen is responsible for Philips’ relations with the government in the market Benelux (since 2002) as well as with the EU organizations and institutions (since 2016).
Public-private partnerships can help instill cultures of innovation across our health systems while managing costs more effectively. In May 2018 for example, Dutch Rijnstate hospital in Arnhem, the Netherlands, signed a 10-year agreement with Philips to jointly develop the ‘hospital of the future’, a new hospital concept that will use the latest monitoring and connected health technologies to expand its delivery of care from the hospital to a regional care network, including the home. With this approach, the aim is to safely move care to lower-cost settings and focus on improved patient outcomes, engagement and experience. The EU should promote such initiatives across member countries.
It really is a pivotal moment for the future of health care. The decisions that are made over the next few years will determine how successfully we can meet the challenges of the future. Yet, given the highly complex, fragmented and personal nature of health care, the risk is real that we spend too much time talking about the need for change, rather than taking action to develop and scale a future-fit approach.
At Philips, we will continue to strive for a healthier future for all EU citizens — one where everyone benefits from modern health care systems that deliver greater value and vastly improved outcomes. We want to work with the EU to create an innovation climate that can support these goals, with smart regulations that allow new ideas to flourish, and the cohesion and financial support that will allow access to innovative health care for EU citizens, but we must collaborate, invest and stay focused if we are to achieve this.