Boston Scientific's Connected Patient Challenge Attracts Inventive Digital Health Solutions from Innovators Worldwide

Inside Digital Health | November 05, 2019

Boston Scientific's Connected Patient Challenge Attracts Inventive Digital Health Solutions from Innovators Worldwide
Boston Scientific launched its fifth annual Connected Patient Challenge, the company has seen a record-breaking number of submissions compared to previous years, and there’s still time for healthcare innovators to submit their ideas. The challenge, which calls on innovators to submit digital health solutions that improve care at home and help patients better manage chronic conditions, already has submissions from participants across the world. Entries have come from the U.S., Taiwan, Israel and Thailand, among other countries. Some submissions leverage artificial intelligence and the internet of things to help aging patients achieve better quality of life. Others seek to help patients manage asthma or chronic obtrusive pulmonary disease via blood pressure monitoring.

Spotlight

Cancer is a disease characterized by the unchecked division and survival of abnormal cells. When this type of abnormal growth occurs in the colon or rectum, it is called colorectal cancer (CRC). The colon and rectum (colorectum), which combined are referred to as the large intestine, are the final part of the gastrointestinal (GI) system, which processes food for energy and rids the body of solid waste (fecal matter or stool).


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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Ensemble Health Partners, in Partnership with Caduceus Capital Partners, Leads Series A Round for Janus Health

Ensemble Health Partners | December 15, 2021

Ensemble Health Partners, in partnership with Caduceus Capital Partners, led the $8 million Series A capital raise for Janus Health, a revenue cycle automation and decision support platform. Billions of dollars are left uncollected annually by healthcare providers due to poor methods and inconsistent human decision making in the revenue cycle process. Janus Health studies end-user behavior within the revenue cycle and uses advanced AI to determine the optimal path for each workflow. Janus then automates processes and end-to-end workflows using its scalable platform and delivers real-time predictive recommendations to guide human worker performance. “I invest in people first. I’ve known Brendan for a long time, and he has assembled an incredible team who are experts in the field. We see a lot of technology fads in healthcare, but I am always most concerned with delivering value and creating a meaningful impact for our clients and associates. As someone deeply entrenched in the revenue cycle world, I see tremendous potential for Janus to deliver on both fronts.” Judson Ivy, Founder, President and CEO, Ensemble Health Partners “Several factors, including labor shortages, shrinking reimbursements and more stable IT environments, are creating a ripe opportunity to transform the revenue cycle with artificial intelligence and automation,” said Brendan Downing, co-founder and CEO of Janus Health. “Janus Health offers a timely service that can have a significant impact for health systems struggling with these rising costs-to-collect and reimbursement challenges.” Health systems continue to struggle with a workforce shortage and lack of resources. A recent McKinsey & Company study showed that $180 billion could be saved in healthcare administration and finance costs with automated technology. Many health systems do not currently have revenue cycle automation, but plan to implement this technology in the next year. With Janus Health, managers and executives receive actionable insights into people, productivity and practices, allowing them to optimally allocate and manage resources. “The revenue cycle in healthcare is notoriously challenging. Billing and collections are especially complicated when you consider the various payors and parties involved in a transaction,” said Dave Vreeland, senior managing partner at Caduceus Capital Partners. “This area is one of the most labor-intensive in healthcare, and there is a huge opportunity for Janus to make a difference in the industry.” Jim Gaffney, EVP, strategy and corporate development at Ensemble Health Partners and Sue Tyler, venture partner at Caduceus Capital Partners will serve on the Janus Health board of directors. About Ensemble Health Partners Ensemble Health Partners is a leading provider of technology-enabled revenue cycle management solutions for health systems, including hospitals and affiliated physician groups. The company offers end-to-end revenue cycle solutions as well as a comprehensive suite of point solutions to clients across the country. About Caduceus Capital Partners, LLC Caduceus Capital Partners is a venture capital and private equity company focused on early-stage digital health investments. The Caduceus Capital Partners investment model actively supports portfolio companies from the first check to the exit phase with operational expertise and network access to potential customers and partners. About Janus Health Technologies Janus Health is leapfrogging the automation solutions of today by developing the only end-to-end process improvement platform that studies a revenue cycle operation to determine the optimal path of each workflow and rapidly builds intelligent automation and decision support with a single-click.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Texas Children's Hospital And Baylor College of Medicine COVID-19 Vaccine Technology Secures Emergency Use Authorization In India

Texas Children Hospital | December 29, 2021

Texas Children's Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine announced today that CORBEVAX™, a protein sub-unit COVID-19 Vaccine, whose technology was created and engineered at its Center for Vaccine Development (CVD), has received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) approval from the Drugs Controller General ofIndia(DCGI)to launch inIndiawith other underserved countries to follow. Dubbed "The World's COVID-19 Vaccine", it uses a traditional recombinant protein-based technology that will enable its production at large scales making it widely accessible to inoculate the global population. The initial construct and production process of the vaccine antigen was developed at Texas Children's Hospital CVD, led by co-directors Drs. Maria Elena Bottazzi and Peter Hotez and in-licensed from BCM Ventures, Baylor College of Medicine's integrated commercialization team, to Hyderabad-based vaccine and pharmaceutical company Biological E. Limited (BE). CORBEVAX™ after completing two Phase III clinical trials involving more than 3000 subjects was found to be safe, well tolerated and immunogenic: CORBEVAX™ demonstrated superior immune response in comparison with COVISHIELD™ vaccine when assessed for Neutralizing Antibody (nAb) Geometric Mean Titers (GMT) against the Ancestral-Wuhan strain and the globally dominant Delta variant. CORBEVAX™ vaccination also generated significant Th1 skewed cellular immune response. CORBEVAX™ nAb GMT against Ancestral-Wuhan strain is indicative of vaccine effectiveness of >90% for prevention of symptomatic infections based on the Correlates of Protection assessment performed during Moderna and Astra-Zeneca vaccine Phase III studies. CORBEVAX™ nAb GMT against the Delta strain indicates a vaccine effectiveness of >80 percent for the prevention of symptomatic infections based on published studies. While none of the subjects who took CORBEVAX™ or COVISHIELD™ had serious adverse events, CORBEVAX™ had 50 percent fewer adverse events than COVISHIELD™. In the continuous monitoring of phase II studies, CORBEVAX™ showed high persistence of immune response as indicated by <30% drop in nAb GMT till 6 months second dose as compared to >80% drop observed with majority of the vaccines. "Protein-based vaccines have been widely used to prevent many other diseases, have proven safety records, and use economies of scale to achieve low-cost scalability across the world," said Dr. Maria Elena Bottazzi, Professor and Associate Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor and Co-Director of the Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development. "Our decade-long studies advancing coronavirus vaccine prototypes has led to the creation of this vaccine, which will fill the access gap created by the more expensive, newer vaccine technologies and that today are still not able to be quickly scaled for global production." The need for safe, streamlined, low-cost vaccines for middle- to low-income countries is central to the world's fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Without widespread vaccination of populations in the Global South, additional virus variants will arise, hindering the progress achieved by currently available vaccines in the United States and other Western countries. "This announcement is an important first step in vaccinating the world and halting the pandemic. Our vaccine technology offers a path to address an unfolding humanitarian crisis, namely the vulnerability the low- and middle-income countries face against the delta variant," said Dr. Peter Hotez, Professor and Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor and Co-Director of the Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development. "Widespread and global vaccination with our Texas Children's-Baylor-BE vaccine would also forestall the emergence of new variants. We have previously missed that opportunity for the alpha and delta variant. Now is our chance to prevent a new global wave from what might follow." "Over the years, we have worked to make quality vaccines and pharmaceutical products accessible to families around the world. With this as our backdrop, we resolved to develop an affordable and effective COVID-19 vaccine. It has now become a reality. We deeply appreciate Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development, Baylor, CEPI, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the government of India for their continuous support and cooperation during this journey. The combined efforts & unceasing support demonstrate that we can collectively overcome any challenge". Mahima Datla, Managing Director, Biological E. Limited ABOUT TEXAS CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL Texas Children's Hospital, a not-for-profit health care organization, is committed to creating a healthier future for children and women throughout the global community by leading in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked as the best children's hospital in Texas, and among the top in the nation, Texas Children's has garnered widespread recognition for its expertise and breakthroughs in pediatric and women's health. The hospital includes the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; the Feigin Tower for pediatric research; Texas Children's Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; Texas Children's Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston; and Texas Children's Hospital The Woodlands, the first hospital devoted to children's care for communities north of Houston. The organization also created Texas Children's HealthPlan, the nation's first HMO for children; has the largest pediatric primary care network in the country, Texas Children's Pediatrics; Texas Children's Urgent Care clinics that specialize in after-hours care tailored specifically for children; and a global health program that's channeling care to children and women all over the world. Texas Children's Global Health program leads efforts that advance health care equity through innovative collaboration in care, education and research for underserved populations globally. Texas Children's Hospital is affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine. ABOUT TEXAS CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL CENTER FOR VACCINE DEVELOPMENT Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development is one of the leading vaccine development centers in the world. Established in Washington DC as the Sabin Vaccine Institute Product Development Partnership (PDP) in the year 2000 and after relocating to the Texas Medical Center in 2011, it rebranded as Texas Children's Center for Vaccine Development. For the past two decades it has acquired an international reputation as a non-profit PDP, advancing vaccines for poverty-related neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) and emerging infectious diseases of pandemic importance. In addition, it builds and strengthens capacity for vaccine development locally and with foreign nations and leads global efforts to guide and influence vaccine policy and advocacy through "vaccine diplomacy" as an international bridge for peace and vaccine development capacity. ABOUT BCM VENTURES Baylor College of Medicine Ventures is the commercial engine of the health sciences university, created to support the translation of academic knowledge and intellectual assets for the benefit of society. We do this by engaging university innovators, entrepreneurs and industry to fully develop ideas along their best commercial path. We foster a culture of commercialization and engage with industry to identify market opportunities for collaborative ventures. ABOUT BIOLOGICAL E. LIMITED Biological E. Limited (BE), a Hyderabad-based Pharmaceuticals & Biologics Company founded in 1953, is the first private sector biological products company in India and the first pharmaceutical company in Southern India. BE develops, manufactures and supplies vaccines and therapeutics. BE supplies its vaccines to over 100 countries and its therapeutic products are sold in India and the USA. BE currently has 8 WHO-prequalified vaccines in its portfolio. In recent years, BE has embarked on new initiatives for organisational expansion such as developing generic injectable products for the regulated markets, exploring synthetic biology and metabolic engineering as a means to manufacture APIs sustainably and developing novel vaccines for the global market.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Virtua Health and Medtronic Share Plans to Reimagine Traditional Health Care Models

Virtua Health | December 16, 2021

Virtua Health and Medtronic plc announce a five-year partnership focused on improving delivery of quality care for residents of South Jersey, particularly those who reside in underserved communities or face systemic barriers to care. Medtronic LABS, an independent impact-focused organization funded by Medtronic plc, will simultaneously launch a separate pilot collaboration with the Cherry Hill Free Clinic and Virtua to address care and food access for people with chronic conditions – the first U.S.-based initiative for Medtronic LABS. "I truly believe technology is the path forward to improving human welfare," said Geoff Martha, Chairman and CEO of Medtronic. "This new partnership and collaboration demonstrate the opportunity to use technology to tackle health challenges in a localized, grassroots way. By taking a data-informed approach, we can help improve access and outcomes for patients with chronic conditions in southern New Jersey." "This partnership presents a significant opportunity to accelerate health equity and better outcomes for individuals and families in our community. Together, we will apply the latest research and innovation to the fundamentals of community-based care, allowing us to identify and empower those who need support to achieve the best-possible quality of life." Dennis W. Pullin, FACHE, president and CEO of Virtua Health The scope of the partnership includes the following projects and will expand over time. Heart Health: Medtronic plc and Virtua Health will develop a program to optimize care for hospital patients diagnosed with heart failure, with a focus on slowing the progression of the disease and enhancing the experience of both patient and provider. By employing Medtronic's data-driven, decision-support tools, Virtua clinicians will provide ongoing resources post-hospitalization, minimizing the likelihood of readmission and creating sustainable, enriching solutions for the individual. Outpatient Care Continuity: The partnership will also optimize patient care in high-value outpatient settings, including ambulatory surgery centers. Additionally, Medtronic plc and Virtua will expand Virtua's hospital at home program, which is due to launch officially in early 2022 and aims to reduce the resource-strain on the health system while allowing eligible patients to heal from the comfort of home. Medtronic LABS' collaboration intends to address population health in the following ways: Community Health and the Cherry Hill Free Clinic: Community health workers and clinicians at the Cherry Hill Free Clinic will utilize Medtronic LABS' digital health platform, extending their reach through mobile tools and point-of-care diagnostics. Those identified as having (or being at risk for) chronic illnesses, such as Type 2 diabetes or hypertension, will then connect to the Cherry Hill Free Clinic for follow-up care. Over time, the platform will become more sophisticated and specific as the data accumulates and reveals localized trends and challenges. Food Access: Medtronic LABS will also support Virtua's Eat Well food access programs, specifically the Food Farmacies located inside Virtua Mount Holly Hospital and the Virtua Health & Wellness Center – Camden. Medtronic LABS and Virtua will identify those at risk for food insecurity – due to financial circumstances or limited health literacy – and connect them to free food, nutrition education, and social-work services. "I am honored that Medtronic LABS and Virtua recognize the essential services we provide at the Cherry Hill Free Clinic, and that they are combining their resources and expertise toward enhancing continuity of care for existing and prospective patients," said Jubril Oyeyemi, MD, founder and chief medical officer of the Cherry Hill Free Clinic. "The CDC estimates that 20 percent of Camden County residents do not have health insurance. By creating pathways to care, we build healthier communities." "Medtronic LABS has trained more than 2,000 health workers and provided screenings to more than a million people worldwide. To date, we have focused our efforts on communities in Kenya, Ghana, India, and the Philippines, which is why we are thrilled to partner with Virtua Health on our first U.S.-based endeavor," said Ruchika Singhal, vice president of Medtronic LABS. "In time, this collaboration will create scalable, replicable improvements to the care-delivery model while advancing health and wellness on an individual level." About the Partners Medtronic: Bold thinking. Bolder actions. We are Medtronic. Medtronic plc, headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, is the leading global healthcare technology company that boldly attacks the most challenging health problems facing humanity by searching out and finding solutions. Our Mission — to alleviate pain, restore health, and extend life — unites a global team of 90,000+ passionate people across 150 countries. Our technologies and therapies treat 70 health conditions and include cardiac devices, surgical robotics, insulin pumps, surgical tools, patient monitoring systems, and more. Powered by our diverse knowledge, insatiable curiosity, and desire to help all those who need it, we deliver innovative technologies that transform the lives of two people every second, every hour, every day. Expect more from us as we empower insight-driven care, experiences that put people first, and better outcomes for our world. In everything we do, we are engineering the extraordinary. Medtronic LABS is an independent, non-profit structure with multiple entities including an operating foundation, a social business, an in-country non-profit, and for-profit subsidiaries. Medtronic LABS is setting out to design the health system of the future: one that is equitable, tech-enabled, and patient-centered. To date, Medtronic LABS has screened more than 1M patients and improved clinical outcomes for over 35K patients in Kenya, Ghana, India, and the Philippines. Virtua Health is an integrated health care system and the trusted partner for personalized health care and wellness for communities in southern New Jersey. With more than 280 locations and 14,000 colleagues, Virtua provides high-quality care with more than two million annual encounters across the full range of community and tertiary health services – from preventive care to urgent care through specialty services in cancer, women's health, neuroscience, and orthopedics to complex minimally invasive cardiac surgery and organ transplantation. Performing more than 175,000 surgeries at its hospitals and network of ambulatory centers, Virtua is one of the largest providers of surgery in the state. As a not-for-profit leader, Virtua continues to improve social determinants in health and has distributed more than 160,000 pounds of fresh produce in underserved areas to address food insecurity. Virtua is advancing important partnerships into the future to help you be well, get well, and stay well. Cherry Hill Free Clinic (CHFC) is an independent 501(c)(3) with the mission of providing free primary care to the uninsured and under-insured. CHFC is supported by Virtua Health, which provides lab, radiology and, in some cases, specialty care to CHFC patients.

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MEDICAL DEVICES

BD Acquires Scanwell Health, Inc. to Expand and Scale Digital At-Home Testing

BD | December 22, 2021

BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company), a leading global medical technology company, today announced it has completed the acquisition of privately held Scanwell Health Inc., a leader in smartphone-enabled at-home medical tests.BD collaborated with Scanwell to develop the app used with the recently launched BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test, the first at-home COVID-19 test that uniquely uses a smartphone camera and app to capture and interpret results, eliminating the human subjectivity in other visually read at-home antigen tests. Scanwell will become the foundational digital platform upon which BD plans to develop at-home diagnostic tests for a range of infectious diseases including COVID-19/influenza A+B, group A strep and additional menu for detecting infections and managing chronic disease. "The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the shift to new care settings, and BD is ready to deliver a smart, connected at-home diagnostic ecosystem to support traditional and telehealth providers and consumers. This acquisition will enable us to expand and scale our digital capabilities in-house to speed time to market for transformative at-home solutions now and in the future." Dave Hickey, president of Life Sciences for BD The Scanwell app is a key differentiator in the market for at-home COVID-19 testing. To date, no other company uses the phone's camera to capture the image of the test that is then analyzed and interpreted by the app. Other COVID-19 home tests use smartphones as part of their process, but BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test is the first and only test to use the smartphone as the analyzer to digitally interpret the test results and provide a definitive POSITIVE or NEGATIVE digital display of testing results. The app also has the capabilities to securely store and report test results to organizations, including businesses, public health authorities and schools. The results of tests are stored in the app and can be referenced and displayed at any time by simply logging into the app. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to be immaterial to BD's fiscal 2022 financial results. Scanwell financial results will be reported under the Integrated Diagnostic Solutions business within the Life Sciences segment. About the BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test The BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test has not been FDA cleared or approved; but has been authorized by FDA under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). This product has been authorized only for the detection of proteins from SARS-CoV-2, not for any other viruses or pathogens. The emergency use of this product is only authorized for the duration of the declaration that circumstances exist justifying the authorization of emergency use of IVDs for detection and/or diagnosis of COVID-19 under Section 564(b)(1) of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, 21 U.S.C. § 360bbb-3(b)(1), unless the declaration is terminated or authorization is revoked sooner. About BD BD is one of the largest global medical technology companies in the world and is advancing the world of health by improving medical discovery, diagnostics and the delivery of care. The company supports the heroes on the frontlines of health care by developing innovative technology, services and solutions that help advance both clinical therapy for patients and clinical process for health care providers. BD and its 70,000 employees have a passion and commitment to help enhance the safety and efficiency of clinicians' care delivery process, enable laboratory scientists to accurately detect disease and advance researchers' capabilities to develop the next generation of diagnostics and therapeutics. BD has a presence in virtually every country and partners with organizations around the world to address some of the most challenging global health issues. By working in close collaboration with customers, BD can help enhance outcomes, lower costs, increase efficiencies, improve safety and expand access to health care.

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Spotlight

Cancer is a disease characterized by the unchecked division and survival of abnormal cells. When this type of abnormal growth occurs in the colon or rectum, it is called colorectal cancer (CRC). The colon and rectum (colorectum), which combined are referred to as the large intestine, are the final part of the gastrointestinal (GI) system, which processes food for energy and rids the body of solid waste (fecal matter or stool).

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