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In 2020, Abdul Latif Jameel Enterprises set up an innovative healthcare solutions business - Abdul Latif Jameel Health Saudi Arabia, thus expanding into a new sector to introduce new medical devices, health-tech solutions, and healthcare services to Saudi Arabia. Part of the global Abdul Latif Jameel Health division, the expansion into this sector follows the successful introduction of cutting-edge Japanese robotic exoskeleton technology to rehabilitate patients with neuromuscular diseases such as spinal injuries at the Abdul Latif Jameel Rehabilitation Hospital in Jeddah in 2018, in collaboration with Japanese company Cyberdyne Inc .

Treating Spinal Injuries with Cyberdyne Medical HAL® [Hybrid Assistive Limb®] Technology

Cyberdyne’s medical HAL® [Hybrid Assistive Limb®] is a form of robotic exoskeleton technology that can regenerate, improve, support and expand patients’ brain-neuro-physical functions. It is designed for use in therapies to treat patients with disorders and/or weakening in the lower limbs due to neuromuscular diseases such as spinal cord injuries, brain trauma and strokes.

Introduction to Saudi Arabia was agreed in 2017, during King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud’s visit to Japan (as part of Saudi-Japan Vision 2030). Following SFDA approval and physiotherapist training at Cyberdyne Germany, the devices were introduced in Abdul Latif Jameel Hospital. To date, over 24 patients have benefitted from this innovative therapy.

In January 2019, the partnership between Abdul Latif Jameel Enterprises, Cyberdyne and the Ministry of Health was enhanced. As a result, 8 patients from King Fahad Medical City (Riyadh) and King Abdulaziz Hospital (Jeddah) received rehabilitation by HAL® robots under the care of certified physiotherapists from the Ministry of Health. This enhanced partnership has led to Abdul Latif Jameel Enterprises being appointed as the distributor of the technology in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Abdul Latif Jameel Hospital as the regional training center.

Success Story

Abdulrahman Al Zahrani, a young Saudi news presenter had an accident where he fell from three storeys up, leaving him with incomplete paraplegia at L1-L2. Abdulrahman is now able to walk and climb stairs without assistance. He now works full time as a TV channel reporter.

Ali Hakami, met with an unfortunate traffic accident that left him in a wheelchair, despite 24 weeks of rehabilitation sessions in Saudi Arabia and abroad, he was still bound to a wheelchair. Ali now walks using elbow crutches after taking 40 sessions (8 weeks) with Cyberdyne’s HAL® robot at King Fahad Medical city.

Approvals and Publications

  • The device obtained CE Marking [CE 0197] for the first time as a robotic medical device in EU.
  • The device obtained the American FDA approval in 2017
  • The device obtained its Saudi SFDA approval in 2017
  • Cyberdyne Inc . Received ISO13485 (Medical Device) for the first ever robotic medical device manufacturer
  • Neurosurgical Focus published a medical study in 2017 on rehabilitation of chronic spinal cord injury with HAL® exoskeleton on a subgroup of 55 patients
  • Article published in Neurology® the official magazine of American Academy of Neurology in 2014.

Global Presence and partnerships:

  • Florida, USA - Brooks Rehabilitation Hospital
  • Bochum, Germany – in partnership with the German Social Accident Insurance Institution
  • Manila, Philippines – Albert Zarate Hospital
  • Malacca, Malaysia – introduced at Social Security Organization under the Ministry of Human Resources
  • Jeddah, Saudi Arabia – At Abdul Latif Jameel Hospital
Cellspect Point-of-Care-Testing (POCT) Device
Japanese Organization for Medical Device Development (JOMDD)