As a medical device trading company
Providing the world's most advanced medical devices to patients in Japan
Yamato Group Haneda Chronogate
Identifying valuable medical devices as a cardiovascular specialist
For more than 30 years, Japan Lifeline has been expanding its business specializing in the cardiovascular field such as cardiac pacemakers. Through our close involvement with the medical community over many years, we have continually searched for trustworthy medical devices for patients and medical professionals, cultivating our skills and acquiring a discerning eye as a specialized trading company.
Early introduction of leading-edge medical devices into Japan
INTRODUCING MEDICALS DEVICES
In order to introduce a new medical device in Japan, its efficacy and safety must be proven and approved by the government. Japan Lifeline has obtained regulatory approvals for many imported medical devices on behalf of foreign manufacturers, and this has enabled us to market these devices from a position that is rather closer to manufacturers, which makes us different from other medical device companies. Also, introduction of novel medical devices often requires clinical trials with additional time and cost. Such effort to introduce new medical devices allows us to successfully deliver them to the clinical practitioners in Japan. Compared to other countries, it is said that it takes much longer time in Japan for new medical devices to be approved. We are committed to do our best to promptly deliver superior medical devices to patients in Japan.
Delivering excellent medical care to patients in all over Japan.
Japan Lifeline delivers products to medical institutions across the country using its 36 business locations throughout Japan and an extensive network within the medical community cultivated over many years. To make sure that devices are used correctly to bring full therapeutic effect, companies must also supply critical information on technology and safety of their devices. We provide such critical information from our locations across the country and also from our education center, TennozAccademia, which also functions as a training center, to create an environment where patients can safely receive top quality medical care.
Japan Lifeline relocated its distribution center in May, 2014 to the Haneda Logistics Center situated at Haneda Chronogate, one of the largest distribution centers in Japan. We will continue to further strengthen our distribution capability including prompt delivery of products by leveraging its good location adjacent to the airport.
There are many leading-edge medical devices developed overseas, including ones generally distributed in the international market but yet to receive regulatory approvals in Japan. We recognize it as our duty to carefully examine such medical devices, identify only the products that meet the needs of the medical setting in Japan, and distribute such products early and safely. We believe that performing this duty fulfills our corporate identity: "... for Patient Comfort."
One example of such leading-edge medical device we introduced from abroad was the ASD Occluder system (a medical device used to treat atrial septal defect (ASD), a hole on the cardiac wall), which was introduced in Japan in 2006.. This product became widely used in the medical field, as it provides a new treatment option that leaves almost no scars on a patient's body. It works by inserting a catheter from the blood vessel of the groin and implanting a device on the affected area of the heart through the catheter. As the ASD Occluder system was new to Japan at that time, we organized an environment to enable proper and safe use of the ASD Occluder system by taking many domestic doctors to overseas clinical field trials. We made efforts not only to introduce new products into Japan, but also to support safe distribution of new products.
I think there are two advantages that JLL can offer when we collaborate with foreign companies as partners to introduce a medical device from abroad. The first advantage is that, as an independent trading company not bound by a particular manufacturer, JLL can identify and select products from the perspective of "whether the product offers a safe and effective treatment method to patients and whether it fits into the Japanese medical setting”. The second advantage is our nationwide sales network and sales force. The field sales representatives who are familiar with the cardiovascular arena can deliver the products to medical professionals all over Japan.
We hope to bring medical professionals and manufacturers together through strong communication with both of them, and to establish the reputation that "everything will be fine if we leave it to JLL". We also hope to continue introducing optimal products for patients and minimally invasive medical devices "... for Patient Comfort".
My department plays a role in setting a course to place new products into the hands of physicians in the area of cardiovascular surgery, which includes contract negotiations with foreign medical device manufacturers and marketing in Japan.
Nowadays, patients have access to information about medical devices available overseas via the Internet. Therefore, the greatest contribution that we can make for our patients is to introduce the world's most advanced medical devices into Japan as early as possible, and this is also our biggest motivation.
Based on information about new products we gather through communications with foreign companies and from meetings with doctors, we are always working on designing road maps to obtain regulatory approvals of such new products in Japan and exploring how we can deliver them to our patients in Japan as early as possible.
The key to successful negotiations with foreign companies is good communication with the counterparty. Regardless of fluency in English, consideration for the counterparty is of utmost importance. We keep in mind that we need to build a relationship of trust by breaking through language and cultural barriers and fostering mutual understanding slowly over time.
As there are cases where our top management come to the negotiation table at its final stage, I believe our passion for the medical field in Japan is conveyed to our negotiating partners.
Speed of introducing excellent products into Japan greatly affects the competitiveness of the company as well as that of products themselves. Furthermore, it is extremely important as a trading company to swiftly gather information on new products that are yet to be introduced to the market.
Our organization is not too large and is relatively simple, and this environment facilitates reporting and consultation with our top management. I believe such environment leads to our prompt decision-making as a company.
We will continue to deliver excellent medical devices from abroad to patients in Japan in collaboration with our overseas partners.