She replaces Dr Marco Pugliese, who shepherded the organisation since its founding
Dr Cristina Bescos has been named the new Managing Director of EIT Health Spain. She began her work 8 April 2019, after being approved by the EIT Health Spain Board to take over the position that had been held by Dr Marco Pugliese since the creation of EIT Health Spain in 2016.
Dr Bescos brings long experience in research and management of large international teams in digital health and healthcare transformation, combining experience from public research institutions and the private sector. She joins EIT Health from Royal Phillips, a leading health technology company and EIT Health core partner.
'We are delighted to have Dr Bescos on board. She will lead EIT Health Spain in its mission to boost innovation in health, and to be a reference alliance in our country and in Europe,' said Enrique Gómez, Chair of EIT Health Spain Governing Board and Professor at the Technical University of Madrid (UPM). 'We are confident that Cristina will uphold the success of EIT Health Spain and drive our organisation forward.'
Public and private experience
Dr Bescos holds a PhD in telecommunication engineering (with a biomedical specialisation) and has more than 15 years’ experience in research and management of large international innovation projects in eHealth. She has worked in public research institutions – including addressing space innovation with the European Space Agency – and in the private sector, with Hewlett Packard, Telefonica I+D and Philips. Dr Bescos joins EIT Health from Royal Philips, where she was European Program Manager for the Population Health/Telehealth business. With professional experience in Switzerland, The Netherlands, Germany and Spain, she has held several representative positions at the European level in industrial bodies, standardisation committees, expert forums, and innovation projects in the area of healthy ageing and chronic care management.
Her expertise and knowledge will continue to foster the main strategic areas covered by the Spanish partners: treating and managing long-term conditions, employing big data and health analytics, promoting self-care and healthy behaviours, and overcoming functional loss and improving the healthcare system.
Sharing ‘Spanish innovation culture’
'I am excited by the opportunity to move forward in my passion,' Dr Bescos said. 'This is a real privilege: devoting my energies in innovation in health; working with multidisciplinary teams where research, education, and business meet; and connecting relevant healthcare leaders in Spain and Europe. After so many years working abroad in international positions, I am honoured to represent Spain in the European innovation scene. I hope I will be able to share Spanish innovation culture, so we can promote its successful health and care models, such as the regional primary health care systems or the efficiency of Spanish healthcare.' Dr Bescos succeeds former Managing Director Dr Marco Pugliese, who has stepped down after three years in the position. Dr Pugliese joined EIT Health from the beginning and contributed to shaping and building EIT Health Spain from scratch. The former Managing Director leaves a strong legacy and a very active organisation, with Spanish partners leading many activities in EIT Health’s three programme areas – Accelerator for business development, Campus for education and Innovation to support disruptive ideas. Dr Pugliese’s highly successful stewardship of EIT Health Spain included hosting the first EIT Health Summit in Barcelona in 2016.
'We are grateful for all his efforts in building EIT Health Spain and proud of his leadership and success,' EIT Health Spain Board Chair Gómez said of Dr Pugliese. 'We wish him all the best in his new endeavours.'