Editor's Note: This blog originally appeared on Forbes.com
We’re used to talking about the Israeli tech ecosystem as the Startup Nation, focusing on the young country’s ability to quickly launch and scale innovative ideas and build companies from the ground up. Tech giants like Facebook, Google, and Apple understand the role the Startup Nation plays globally and they routinely acquire startups here.
What’s sometimes lost in the cool-whiz-bang-awesomeness of some of the startups coming out of Israel is the fact that some of these companies are dramatically changing lives. Israel has an entire tech sector dedicated to enabling the disabled. The impact Israeli tech has on people is almost biblical in nature: whether it’s helping quadriplegics to walk (and look their loved ones directly in the eyes or use their hands or move more efficiently) or the deaf to hear and the vision-impaired to see, Israel is a leading medical innovator.
Here are 12 technological breakthroughs coming out of Israel that will dramatically improve the lives of the disabled in 2015:
1. ReWalk: When Amit Goffer suffered a bad accident and was confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his foreseeable life, he never quit dreaming of being able to walk away from his wheelchair. In 2001, the Israeli engineer founded ReWalk, a company with a singular goal to enable people with spinal cord injuries to regain much of their natural mobility. Growing from a small research shop based in Israel, ReWalk is now a global medical technology firm that went public on the Nasdaq in the fall of 2014 (NASDAQ: RWLK). With FDA approval and CE marks, ReWalk’s bionic exoskeleton is already giving paraplegics back their ability to stand and walk again.
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