GE Healthcare, the healthcare unit of General Electric
Company, will be leading the growing debate around the ‘Early Health’ model of care at this year’s
European Congress of Radiology (ECR) in Vienna with a focus on the company’s ‘Radiology Reimagined’
theme, alongside prominent displays of breakthough products that highlight the company’s
exhibit booth.

During ECR 2009 GE will showcase technologies and solutions at their booth as well as at daily
symposia with leading industry experts. The aim is to help radiologists transform healthcare delivery
from a focus on treating late disease to a focus on early health, with prevention and pre-symptomatic
disease detection.

“We are very pleased to be a part of ECR again this year and privileged to present to industry experts,
institutions and the public the latest GE Healthcare innovations and highlight our commitment to
‘Early Health’. GE Healthcare is the only healthcare organisation with the strength to bring together
the best in science, technology and business to redefine the frontiers of discovery, diagnosis,
treatment and information management,” said Jean Michel Malbrancq, vice president for Western
Europe at GE Healthcare.

Over the years, many experts within and outside the healthcare industry have pointed to
technologies on the horizon that will potentially ‘save healthcare’. However, GE Healthcare believes
that to take healthcare into the future, we don’t have to wait for technologies that will be available in
2025. We need only look at the technologies and contemporary management processes we have
today, and act. Below are ten reasons to believe in the ‘Early Health’ model of care:

1. Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death in the world; however, at least 80% of
premature deaths from cardiovascular heart disease and strokes could be prevented.¹

2. Alcohol, cholesterol and tobacco are the main risk factors driving disease incidence; all three of them
are controllable by patients.¹

3. According to the World Health Organization, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer
deaths in the world. Mammography could potentially save 47,000 lives over a 14-year period in a
population of 58 million women aged 40-74 (US study).²

4. Early identification of Parkinson’s allows the potential for better outcomes and reduced costs;
from $6867/year if diagnosed at Stage I to $34,659/year at Stage IV.³

5. Colorectal cancer’s five-year survival is 90% if detected at an early-localised stage; however, only
39% of colorectal cancers are diagnosed at this stage, mostly due to low rates of screening. After
the cancer has spread regionally to involve adjacent organs or lymph nodes, the five-year survival
drops to 68%. For persons with distant metastases, five-year survival is 10%.4

6. A 1% increase in survival rate from diseases like cancer would save €344 billion per year in

7. Osteoporosis, also known as ‘the silent crippler’, usually lies undetected until it is too late to be
effectively treated or managed. By 2050, the worldwide incidence of hip fracture in men is
projected to increase by 310% and 240% in women.6

8. Between 1990 and 2020, deaths from non-communicable diseases and injury are expected to rise
from 33 million to 58 million annually, with a similar proportional increase in years of life lost. By
2020, cardiovascular disease, injury and mental illnesses are predicted to be responsible for about
one-half of all deaths and one-half of all healthy life years lost worldwide.7

9. As populations grow older and with the rising trend of obesity, cardiovascular disease is one area
with an increasing need for earlier risk stratification. It is an area in which implementation of the
early health model today could have a significant impact on clinical outcomes, the cost-effectiveness
of care and the quality of life of patients in the future.8

10. About one in six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetimes. Prostate cancer is
the second leading cause of cancer death in American men, behind only lung cancer. Modern
methods of detection and treatment mean that many prostate cancers are now found earlier and
can be treated more effectively.9

“The potential is tremendous. It’s both better health for citizens, which means improved quality of life
for longer, improved wealth creation and life-long learning, more productive workers and more
incentive for investment and education. If we can redirect healthcare resources into developing
better ways to predict, diagnose, treat and monitor disease while leveraging information throughout
this continuum, we could have a much healthier population,” concluded Malbrancq.

Several new innovative technologies and clinical images will be on display at the GE Healthcare stand
(hall expo B, stands 202 and 211) at the exhibition in the Austria Centre, Vienna. GE Healthcare is
positioned to help transform the healthcare industry by bringing to market innovative products, services and solutions that have the potential to enable healthcare professionals to detect diseases
earlier and treat patients more effectively based on better informed decisions.

For more information and news about GE Healthcare at ECR 2009 please visit our website.


  1. World Health Organization
  2. Jemel A, Tiwari RC, et al.: Cancer statistics 2004. CA:Cancer L Clin 2004, 54:8-29
  3. Dodel RC, Singer M, Köhne-Volland R et al. The economic impact of Parkinson’s disease. Pharmacoeconomics. 1998; 14:299-312
  4. American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts and Figures
  5. Kevin M. Murphy and Robert H. Topel. ‘The Value of Health and Longevity’ Journal of Political Economy
  7. International Cardiovascular Disease Stadistics
  8. Murray CJ, Lopez AD. Global mortality, disability, and the contribution of risk factors: Global Burden of Disease Study. Lancet 1997; 349: