Today's Medica has very little to do with its modest beginnings back in 1969.
Thanks to the Medica Düsseldorf is the world capital of medicine for five days.
By Ilse Schlingensiepen
What awaits the visitors at the Messe Düsseldorf in the next few days in 19 halls with 4313 exhibitors has very little to do with the modest beginnings of the Medica. In 1969 it came into existence as a congress entitled "1st Diagnostics Week," accompanied by an exhibition with 135 participants.
Fifteen years later, in 1984, there were 700 exhibitors displaying their products at the exhibition grounds in Düsseldorf-Stockum. The importance of IT became evident at the Medica very early on. In 1987 the Medica Medienstrasse (literally "Media Street") presented a special exhibition of medical software which later obtained a firm place at the fair as the telemedicine forum Medica Media.
In 1992 the medical trade fair was accompanied for the first time by COMPAMED. This specialist fair for medical technology had 52 exhibitors from 13 countries when it first opened its doors. Now, in 2008, there will be 519 exhibitors from 30 countries at COMPAMED.
The number of visitors to the Medica first passed the record figure of 100,000 in 1994. Twenty-two percent of these came from abroad. Since then the Medica has become considerably more international. Forty percent of the 137,000 people visiting the fair in 2007 were from outside Germany.
The "1st Diagnostics Week" has come of age. "The Medica is one of the top ten trade fairs in the world in terms of the number of exhibitors," says Wilhelm Niedergöker, Managing Director of the Messe Düsseldorf. Each year in mid-November the Medica and Medica Congress, COMPAMED and the German Hospital Conference transform Düsseldorf into the world capital of medicine.