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REHAPROTEX addressed users of compensatory aids and trade visitors


Two years on, the largest Czech expo focusing on the needs of people with disabilities once again took place at the Brno Exhibition Centre. Two exhibition halls featured innovations in the field of rehabilitation, compensatory, prosthetic and orthopaedic aids, products for active life of senior citizens, products of sheltered workshops and services of health and social care providers. Over the course of four days, the fair was visited by more than 5,000 visitors – end-users, health care professionals and government officials, health insurance companies, social care institutions, charities and non-profit organizations.

Great interest in testing of new products

The attention of visitors was attracted by tens of product innovations and other interesting exhibits, which could be tested and compared directly on the spot. There was a wide range of mechanical and electric wheelchairs, lifting and positioning systems, mobility aids, stair climbers and many other aids presented by dozens of exhibitors, members of the Association of Manufacturers and Sellers of Medical Devices, as well as other companies. In addition to product testing at the stands, expert counselling was also provided. New legislation and increased reimbursement limits have opened the way for people with disabilities to get better wheelchairs and other medical devices, which has boosted demand. Visitors were also very interested in more demanding solutions such as additional drives for wheelchairs or modifications of vehicles for manual driving, or to facilitate the car transport of people with handicaps.

Prizes for three Czech products

Exhibitors could enter their solutions for improving the quality of life of people with disabilities to the Golden Rehaprotex 2019 competition. The jury, composed of professionals working in the fields of medicine, orthopaedics and rehabilitation, selected the three best products, which by coincidence were exclusively Czech. The HURT-e electric mechanical wheelchair drive won the category of aids for walking, mobility and transport. The product of the Czech company HURT was praised by the jury for its compactness, low weight and high performance. In the category of solutions for active and self-sufficient life won the Charley Tramp caravan for people with severe disabilities, exhibited by the company Opus Lacrimosa. This wheelchair-accessible motorhome allows for completely independent holidays for people who cannot do without an electric wheelchair. The winner of Golden Rehaprotex in the category of rehabilitation, compensatory, prosthetic and orthopaedic aids was the company MEBSTER for the first entirely Czech exoskeleton designed especially for paraplegics. The UNILEXA exoskeleton excels in reliability, safety, walking stability, low weight, and easy and quick application directly from the trolley.

Top conferences: REHAEXPRES also brought in the Prime Minister

This year, too, a special wheelchair-accessible REHAEXPRES train departed from Prague to Brno, which in addition to the people with disabilities also brought the Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, Minister of Transport Vladimír Kremlík and other VIP guests to the expo grounds. Apart from a tour of the fair, they visited a conference on the topic of How will the conditions of travelling for people with disabilities change after the liberalization of railway transport. Top representatives of Czech Railways as well as private railway carriers, NRZP, regions, SŽDC, SFDI and other institutions also attended this meeting of exceptionally high quality. Also in the following days there was a very attractive professional supporting programme, including the meeting of VZP audit technicians, a seminar of the Energy Regulatory Office on the protection of consumers against “bullies” when changing energy suppliers or a seminar and roundtable of the Ministry of labour and Social Affairs on the project titled Policy of Aging in regions, and on family and intimate life of people with disabilities.

Programme for the public for the first time with parasport

The news of this year was the Emil Sport Arena, which every day of the fair presented various sports activities for handicapped people – floorball, rugby, basketball, parahockey, paragolf, curling, boccia and futsal for the blind. This event of the Emil Endowment Fund was attended by successful para-sportspeople,  and visitors could try various sports on the spot.

A traditional part of the fair was extensive counselling and services offered for free. The National Health Institute has opened a Health Forum promoting healthy lifestyle. Experts from organisations such as Bílý kruh bezpečí [White Circle of Safety], Kudy kam [Wherefrom Whereto], Liga vozíčkářů [The Wheelchair League], ParaCENTRUM Fenix, Consumer Defense Association and other organisations answered questions from visitors. Testing of blood pressure, sight, food intolerance and body fat, or examination and taping by a physiotherapist were available free of charge at the fair. On the lecture stage there was a special two-day programme for senior citizens. More than ten protected workshops offering Christmas gifts and other handicraft products were featured.

The next REHAPROTEX will take place from 5 to 8 October 2021.


What people said about the expo

Andrej Babiš, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic

REHAPROTEX is a very important fair for people with disabilities. I came here by REHAEXPRES and used the three-hour journey from Prague to talk to people with disabilities, as we definitely want to help them. It is very important that our civil society and the state address their problems.

Václav Krása, Chair of the National Council of Persons with Disabilities

I am glad that the Prime Minister visited REHAPROTEX, saw individual medical devices “in natura” and talked to the exhibitors about their problems that need to be further sorted. The conference on the transport of persons with disabilities was very beneficial.

Jiří Kuliš, CEO of Trade Fairs Brno

The Brno Exhibition Centre is wheelchair accessible and REHAPROTEX has been held here since 1988. My thanks go to the exhibitors as this year they brought interesting products that help people with disabilities of all age groups.

Luboš Veselý, Director of the Roomer Division, ERILENS

We were pleasantly surprised by the participation, which was higher than we had expected. The vast majority of visitors were end users, about one tenth were people from institutions. REHAPROTEX is still interesting for us and it turns out that two years is the optimal time for generating new demand.

Jiří Fiala, car sales, conversions  for the disabled, CanoCar

We try to help people with disabilities travel and lead a full-fledged life, and the fair is helpful to us on that. Every day we dealt with various options for vehicle modifications and negotiated specific orders, and we even sold one car here.

Miroslav Hons, service technician, MEDESA care

We brought new products to the fair to test what the demand for them would be. We managed to captivate both end users and people from health insurance companies for them, so we are satisfied with the participation. There were a lot of people, certainly more than we had expected. We did not take a single break until the afternoon on the first two days.

Lubomír Kachyňa, Commercial Director, MEDICCO

On the first three days there were quite a lot of visitors and overall we rate it as a good year. A great idea was the train that brought people from more distant parts of the country to the fair. People with handicaps have a harder time with transport, so whatever helps them is a big plus. I commend the supporting programme for trade visitors, for example the VZP Audit Technicians' Conference – this is exactly our target group and everyone dropped by then. The Silesian Diaconia also had a one-day conference that brought another lot of professionals to the stands. This is very important for us exhibitors.

Šárka Dvořáková, Managing Director, SIVAK

I commend the organizers because they did a great job this year. Promotion of the fair was visible and many visitors from different categories arrived.

Petr Kotík, CEO, PATRON Bohemia

This year is definitely a shift towards the better, at least on the first three days. There is much to be improved in the future, but overall it was not bad.

Leoš Fučík, director of the Opus Lacrimosa institute, author of the Charley Tramp project

The presentation of the wheelchair-accessible caravan Charley Tramp fulfilled what I expected from it. It attracted media attention, besides many people from families of people with disabilities, also officials from the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and the Prime Minister came to see the vehicle. And I am very happy about the Golden Rehaprotex award.

František Malina, Managing Director, HURT

We exhibit here regularly and we are satisfied with this year. We had lower expectations because exhibitors are not many, but people actually did come in. I have to appreciate the promotion, and the train was also a great idea. Maybe it would be worth considering some other day dispatch a train from Ostrava. Trade visitors also came in, so it certainly made sense to us. We were pleased with the Golden Rehaprotex award and I liked that this time all the prizes were won by Czech manufacturers.

Ondřej Michalík, Product Manager, ORTIKA CZ

This year was pleasant beyond expectations. We did not expect such interest either from clients or trade visitors. In the future, we would welcome an even greater focus on professionals, more on-site conferences. We rate the participation of exhibitors very positively, we could compare ourselves with the competition, which is also important for us.

Vladimír Sajler, Sales and Technical Director, Ortoservis

We are pleasantly surprised by the attendance and most of the exhibitors are of  the same opinion. Trade visitors and many individual clients came in, so this year exceeded our expectations.

Jan Býma, Managing Director, MEYRA

In terms of attendance and interest in products, this year's REHAPROTEX pleasantly surprised us. Promotion of the fair fell on fertile ground, many trade visitors came in, as well as field workers and, of course, end clients, who appreciated mainly that they could compare the offer of individual manufacturers and distributors of compensatory aids in one place. This aspect is very important for people with reduced mobility.

Matěj Lachman, expert advisor, DMA Praha

We were a bit sceptical, but in the finals we really liked the fair. We are very pleasantly surprised at how many people came here. The portfolio of visitors ranged from physicians through end customers to insurance companies. And above all, there were people with a particular interest. For us this was certainly a good event.

Tomáš Rondzík, operating & marketing manager, KURY

This year's REHAPROTEX was quite successful from our point of view. It is actually the only exhibition of this scale in the Czech Republic, which was confirmed this year. We introduced new products and people came in sufficient numbers, so we are satisfied.

Kateřina Maxová, Chair of the DMO Pobyty Association

I would like to thank everyone I had the opportunity to meet at the Rehaprotex fair of compensatory and rehabilitation aids in Brno. Thank you for your interest in people with disabilities, thank you for your interest in our organization that organizes stays for these people in particular. I have established many new contacts, thanks to which I will develop further cooperation with other non-profit organizations, sponsors, potential clients and volunteer assistants in the coming weeks. I look forward to the next events and thanks again!

Date: 1 Nov 2019 18:12:00

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