How are innovations in health IT allowing better patient care and preventing all-too-common medical errors?

Peter Ziese, PhD, MD

Patient safety continues to be a top priority for health care providers and hospital administrators, but as care expands beyond the four hospital walls, so must our approach to patient safety. While the challenge is ongoing, new medical and consumer technologies continue to evolve within the health care industry, providing new, improved ways for providers to address this issue. While these technological solutions can play an integral role in better addressing patient needs, the first step to successful integration is evaluating how new technology can help eliminate preventable medical errors and improve the patient experience...

May 27th, 2016
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Criminals are increasingly using ransomware to target healthcare organizations. What do these attacks entail?  

Raj Mehta

As organizations improve the maturity of their cyber risk programs and capabilities, cybercriminals also continue to look for innovative ways to drive their revenue streams. One such rapidly increasing attack mechanism is ransomware. Ransomware is a category of malicious software (“malware”) that encrypts a user’s disk drives and demands some form of compensation in return for critical data held hostage.

Over the past year, healthcare organizations, particularly providers, have been attractive targets for cybercriminals.

These criminals have recently updated their arsenal with ransomware to conduct attacks on...

May 26th, 2016
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Both partnerships aim to develop low cost, smaller, disposable continuous glucose monitoring systems that leverage data and analytics to provide actionable insights to diabetes patients.

Arundhati Parmar 

Back in August 2015, continuous glucose monitoring firm Dexcom announced that it would be partnering with Verily, formerly Google Life Sciences to build smaller, cheaper, disposable CGM sensors beefed up with analytics.

Here's how Dexcom's CEO, Kevin Sayer, described the effort in a November earnings call. 

We intend to work together to develop simple low-...

May 26th, 2016
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A medical device doesn't need to be connected for cybersecurity to be an issue. Here are the threats you need to know.

Stephanie Domas

There have been a number of medical device conferences over the past few months, with some focusing on medical device cybersecurity. While attending these conferences, I enjoy finding opportunities to engage medical device manufacturers on the topic of cybersecurity and how they currently address it. Nothing makes me happier than learning that they are proactively designing security into their devices. However, one of the most common things I still hear is, “Our devices aren’t connected, so we don’t have to do anything about cybersecurity yet.”

Wrong.

Any device that speaks in 1’s and 0’s has a cyber-attack surface,...

May 26th, 2016
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A new leapfrog guidance from FDA gives a glimpse into the agency's thinking on 3-D printed medical devices.

Matthew R. Jorgensen, PhD

On May 10, 2016, FDA released a leapfrog guidance document on the technical considerations for additive manufactured or 3-D printed devices. Leapfrog guidance documents provide valuable information on what is in the regulatory pipeline and allow interested parties to have a voice in the development of FDA guidance.

Here are some key points from the draft guidance pertaining to the testing of medical devices.

...
May 24th, 2016
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Marlou Janssen calls Biotronik the best-kept secret in cardiac rhythm management. In this Q&A, she reveals the new technologies that will change that.

Arundhati Parmar

 

In the world of cardiac rhythm management in the U.S., the companies that jump to top of mind are Medtronic, St. Jude Medical and Boston Scientific.

Yet, there is a fourth company too — Biotronik. In an interview at the Heart Rhythm Society's annual meeting in San Francisco in early May, the president of the German company's U.S. subsidiary, said that hospital will be attracted by new technologies that the company is launching...

May 24th, 2016
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A California company is hoping to commercialize software that automates the labor-intensive process of diabetic retinopathy screening, which could save money and prevent large-scale blindness. 

Varun Saxena

Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness among working-age adults in the developed world. It can be prevented by screening, but the process of grading retinal images is resource intensive and requires certified optometrists. 

But software to automate the process “represents a fundamental innovation and medical image analysis” and “may have huge potential for telemedicine delivery of eye health care,”...

May 24th, 2016
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C.R. Bard offers a peek at more than 30 forthcoming products across its businesses, including the peripheral vascular, surgical specialties, and urology divisions. 

Marie Thibault

There's plenty more where that came from.

C. R. Bard has over 150 product ideas in its pipeline but allowed analysts just a taste with a look at approximately 35 new products anticipated in the next few years. The products, which range from tools to help reduce radiation exposure from fluoroscopy to a new dialysis catheter, were described during the company's May 23 analyst meeting.

There are over 150 product ideas in the pre-R&D pipeline and "the...

May 24th, 2016
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Bundled payment in orthopedics represent an opportunity for smart medical device firms that are not afraid to change how they do business.

Michael Abrams and Gordon Phillips

 

On the morning of April 1, hospital and medical device company executives woke up to yet another new chapter in bundled pricing — CMS’ Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) initiative. Unlike the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement (BPCI) programs that preceded it, there is no opt-out clause for the 800 hospitals designated as participants across the U.S...

May 23rd, 2016
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The opportunity for cost savings as well as efforts to reduce medical waste are driving rapid growth in the reprocessed medical device market.

Marie Thibault

The worldwide reprocessed medical device market is set to triple to $5 billion by 2022 as healthcare facilities look to cut costs and reduce medical waste. This forecast, from a study by Grand View Research, Inc., anticipates significant growth from the Asia Pacific region. 

The global market is expected to grow at an over 20% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). Almost half (47%) of the $1.141 billion reprocessed medical device market consisted of North American business in 2014, but the report authors...

May 23rd, 2016
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