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German diagnostics set to lose pillar of strength

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

The roof over the in vitro diagnostics industry in Germany will stay up, albeit without one of its main pillars: Dierk Meyer-Luerssen will leave the national diagnostics industry association, the VDGH, of which he has been key component for 31 years, in 2009. The industry will be hoping that Mr Meyer-Luerssen's successor will be able to match his technical insight, knowledge and general ability to "convey the message" for an industry that has grown from E100m in 1977 to almost E2bn ($3.12bn) today - E2.2bn including non-VDGH adherents. That message has always been of vital nature of early diagnosis and optimum use of IVDs and of the importance of reimbursement for new tests. The VDGH director, who will be succeeded by association director Dr Martin Walger, has consistently been an energetic proponent of fair treatment for an industry that has to struggle - however inconceivable that may be - for attention and funding, in Germany as elsewhere. Clinica, among others, will miss his clarity and ability to convey messages about complex technologies in a clear - and often forthright -manner. See this issue, page 23.

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