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Turns Out Medical Devices Can Be Suspicious

One caused the evacuation of a college building in New Jersey.

Qmed Staff

Ocean County College Gateway Building
Kean-Ocean Gateway Building (Image courtesy of Ocean County College)

A building at Ocean County College (Toms River, NJ) was briefly evacuated Monday after a student reported a package in a trash can was making noise, according to media reports.

In the end, it turned out the package contained a insulin pump that was making beeping, humming, and hissing sounds, local police told Toms River Patch and WOBM radio.

The evacuated of the Kean-Ocean Gateway Building lasted for only about an hour during the afternoon. The evacuation included the Ocean County Sheriff's K9 squad bringing in bomb-sniffing dogs, WOBM reported.

The story is but another example of the unusual situations that medical devices sometimes find themselves in--circumstances that are hard for medtech designers and engineers to predict. Who would have thought, for example, that throwing away an insulin pump making noise would cause a security situation if the trash can happens to be in a public building?

Another mind-bending circumstance that Qmed covered earlier this year involved cremation of dead bodies. Before Medtronic's tiny leadless Micra pacemaker hit the market, the company engaged in an unusual experiment: implanting the device inside the hearts of 16 human cadavers and cremating them.

The reason for this experiment? Medtronic wanted to make sure corpses with the Micra inside would not blow up inside of ovens.

Discover more about connected medical device innovation at BIOMEDevice San Jose, December 7-8, 2016.

Chris Newmarker is senior editor of Qmed. Follow him on Twitter at @newmarker.

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