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October 2015

Press Contact:

Anne Meerboth-Maltz
Tel. (312) 781-5185
Fax (312) 781-5188

Messe Düsseldorf North America
150 North Michigan Avenue
Suite 2920
Chicago, IL 60601


The recent staging of REHACARE 2015, International Trade Fair with Congress & Forums, served as a vibrant platform for nearly 39,000 visitors looking for the latest information and products for self-determined living for people with disabilities or requiring care as well as seniors. A total of 754 exhibitors from 37 countries presented their new and advanced rehabilitation and care products. More than 100 self-help and social-economy associations and organizations were on hand to provide consult services and answer current disability and health policy-related questions. As is tradition due to REHACARE’s alternating yearly cycle, the exhibit product range this year was comparable to that of the 2013 staging, when 43,500 visitors took part.

“Even though visitor numbers may have fallen short of the 2013 level, REHACARE always finds its audience, regardless of quantitative aspects. Staged annually, it’s a reliable source of information both for international industry pros and for affected persons, especially here in North Rhine-Westphalia. With this trade fair we are making an important contribution to help strengthen and expand social participation, self-determination and dignified care – which means we are doing our part to solve one of the central society challenges of our time,” stated Messe Düsseldorf Managing Director Joachim Schäfer. “As usual, the exhibitors at REHACARE 2015 set benchmarks when it comes to internationality. The predominately small and medium-sized companies from around the world impressed our visitors with their innovative solutions for nearly every sphere of life and every disability.” As in the past, REHACARE 2015 visitors were particularly interested in wheelchairs, mobility and walking aids.

According to BAG SELBSTHILFE, (the German Federal Association of Self-help Groups), REHACARE is of more importance to people with disabilities, care needs and chronic diseases than any other trade fair. Wolfgang Tigges, Deputy Managing Director of BAG SELBSTHILFE, called the event the “annual Germany-wide family gathering for affected individuals and their loved ones.” He added: “The visitors at our stands come from all over Germany to meet, talk about their experiences and get advice on the procurement of aids.” The association hosted an extensive lecture program which included topics such as the reform of the German Equality Act and the target agreements on creating accessibility in Germany. “These topics are critically important for people with disabilities. This is about making good on the promise of full inclusion, which is guaranteed in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,” explained Wolfgang Tigges.

International exhibitors increasingly use REHACARE to present forward-looking product concepts and introduce prototypes just about to enter the market. PARAVAN, a specialist for car adaptations and the leading technology provider of autonomous driving systems, presented the first vehicle for people with mobility impairments able to drive into and out of a garage automatically. While the new system is not for sale yet, it does show “the kind of new freedom motorists with disabilities can look forward to in the near future,” noted Wolfgang Glauner, an Executive at PARAVAN. “We are a company that launches new products every year and we aim at presenting them as soon as possible. REHACARE provides us with an opportunity to do just that. We consider it a key platform to stay in touch with our user customers and international specialist retailers.”

The South Korean start-up company dot showcased a groundbreaking innovation at REHACARE 2015: a smartwatch with a braille display for the blind. It communicates with the iOS and Android operating systems and lets users retrieve and answer smartphone messages. This innovative product will become available in 2016. According to Managing Director Chris Withers Green: “We came to Düsseldorf in order to explore the market for this new product, introduce it to potential users and find international distributors. But also to identify new fields of application and talk to experts about future products for blind and visually impaired people. And we got some great feedback.”

The North Rhine-Westphalia state government participated in this year’s REHACARE with the Ministry for Health, Emancipation, Care and Aging providing a wealth of information. “We want to encourage people to deal with issues such as old age, care and dementia in a timely manner. Because if the goal is to keep living autonomously for as long as possible when a need for support arises, one simply has to lay the groundwork early on,” said Health Minister Barbara Steffens. Also represented at the state government’s group stand were the Ministry of Labour, Integration and Social Affairs, the Ministry for Schools and Further Education, the Ministry for Climate Protection, Environment, Agriculture, Nature Conservation and Consumer Protection as well as the state-associated public-welfare foundation Stiftung Wohlfahrtspflege NRW.

The REHACARE exhibits were complemented by an extensive ancillary program including the expanded homecare education and training program presented at the “Living with care @home” forum by the care-training academy Pflegeakademie Niederrhein. Hosted by the Disabled and Rehabilitation Sports Association North Rhine-Westphalia (BRSNW), the REHACARE Sports Center offered visitors a four-day program on the comprehensive fitness options for the disabled and seniors.

The next REHACARE will take place from 28 September 28 – to October 1, 2016 in Düsseldorf. For further information on visiting or exhibiting at REHACARE 2016, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, 150 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL 60601. Telephone: (312) 781-5180; Fax: (312) 781-5188; E-mail:; Visit our web site; Subscribe to our blog; Follow us on twitter at

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Messe Dusseldorf North America Located at 150 N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL. Phone: 312-781-5180. .