Sensors to go are coming of age

Healthcare IT News | April 02, 2020

When healthcare experts in Europe started debating whether or not to reimburse digital health applications two years ago, Josef Hecken, a very senior German health politician, said in an interview that health insurance companies should not be obliged to pay for “fun applications”. Hecken is head of the German healthcare system’s governing board for reimbursement decisions (G-BA). He is among those who really has a say on where the money flows in German healthcare.  Quotes like Hecken’s led the German minister of health, the Christian Democrat Jens Spahn, to create a new reimbursement pathway for digital health applications that (partly) bypasses the traditional decision making chains for reimbursement issues. The law that established this new pathway came into effect at the end of 2019. Whether it will work, remains to be seen.  All around the world, there is still a sound scepticism towards digital health applications and wearable sensor technology in the realms of “deep healthcare”. Up until now, there is no healthcare system at all that offers straight-forward reimbursement for, say, a digital application that continuously monitors blood pressure or seizures. Most of what is being paid for is driven by marketing considerations of healthcare organisations that want to be seen as being innovative or of health insurance companies that want to attract younger – and less costly – customers.

Spotlight

The investiture ceremony for Jonathan B. Perlin, MD, PhD, MSHA, FACP, FACMI, President, HCA Clinical Services Group and Chief Medical Officer, as the Chairman of the American Hospital Association was held at the AHA’s Annual Membership Meeting in Washington, D.C. recently.


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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Aatru Medical, LLC Completes Acquisition of Key Supplier Exothermix

Aatru Medical | April 28, 2022

Aatru Medical is pleased to announce the acquisition of Exothermix, the inventor and supplier of the unique mode-of-action component in the NPSIMSTM incisional management negative pressure system. Exothermix is an innovation company with patented technology and manufacturing of simple, fast, and safe oxygen scavengers with various uses including on-demand self-heating solutions that serve the medical, military, beauty, and personal care markets with these customized products. “We are very pleased to join the Aatru family. The resulting synergies allow us to not only continue to be a key component supplier to Aatru Medical, but this also allows us to continue to develop and to manufacturer industry-changing products for our existing and future customers.” Daniel Hancock, who will remain as President of Exothermix The full Exothermix management and staff will remain in place in the College Station, TX facility and continue to service existing customers. Aatru Medical President Edward Armstrong noted, “The acquisition brings together two innovative technologies and business cultures, which provides a stronger platform for future growth, through accelerated product development and the seamless integration of our supply chain.” Aatru Medical, LLC is a privately-owned medical device company located in Cleveland, OH. The company’s recently FDA-cleared NPSIMSTM is a pre-assembled, single use solid-state negative pressure system for surgical incision management.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

House Rx Secures $30 Million in Financing to Improve the Specialty Pharmacy Experience for Patients and Their Care Teams

House Rx | March 15, 2022

House Rx, a health technology platform focused on improving affordability and patient access to specialty medications, announced it has secured $25 million in Series A financing led by Bessemer Venture Partners, bringing total funding to $30 million. House Rx's technology platform and pharmacy service enable specialty practices to offer medically-integrated dispensing, which means patients can receive both their physician and pharmacy care from one team, collaborating on a unified technology platform. Since it launched in March 2021, House Rx has partnered with four medical specialty practices and 30 prescribers in California and Washington. "We have a simple idea: partner with specialty clinics all over the country to enable medically integrated dispensing where the physician, pharmacist, nurses and techs can work together as one team, under one proverbial roof, to improve patient care. Our vision for the future of specialty pharmacy is a more local, more collaborative, and ultimately a more affordable system that leads to much better outcomes for patients." Ogi Kavazovic, CEO and a co-founder Specialty medications, which include treatments for cancers, rheumatic diseases and other chronic and acute conditions, are some of the most expensive drugs available. Unlike infused therapies which are administered in the clinics, the burden of specialty medication access and adherence often falls on patients, who typically need to battle several large bureaucracies to gain access to their medications. These often lead to multi-week delays in treatment and much lower adherence rates compared to medications administered in clinics. Currently, specialty medications are mainly dispensed via mail by a patient's insurance company, not their doctor or a pharmacy a patient chooses. A growing body of research demonstrates that when patients obtain timely access to cancer treatments directly from their care team, they have better outcomes, including improved quality of life and increased survivability. House Rx currently has over 30 employees, who are mostly software engineers and pharmacy operations. In addition to Bessemer Venture Partners, First Round Capital, Character.vc, and 1984.vc participated in the Series A funding. First Round Capital led the seed round as the initial investor alongside Khosla Ventures, Maverick Ventures, and 1984.vc. The funding from this latest round will go towards continued investments in House Rx's technology platform and scaling pharmacy operations. "The specialty pharmacy market is in much need of a new approach - the current system severely lacks in patient choice and innovation, and we think House Rx's vision for a more modern, more decentralized approach will have incredible impact," said Steve Kraus, Partner, Bessemer Venture Partners. "Bessemer is proud to back a company with a mission to ultimately make it easier and more cost effective for patients to get the treatment they need." In addition to Kavazovic, the health technology start-up was co-founded by Tesh Khullar, who serves as the company's President. Kavazovic and Khullar are former Flatiron Health executives, where they gained experience working closely with hundreds of oncology clinics. The company's Chief Pharmacy & Operating Officer is Denali Cahoon, PharmD, who is a former executive at Trellis Rx. "The antiquated pharmacy systems developed decades ago inhibit coordinated patient care and increase costs. The current system also prevents patients from choosing where they can get their medically prescribed life-sustaining therapies," said Tesh Khullar, President and a co-founder. "We started House Rx to make the medically integrated dispensing model the new normal in specialty pharmacy. With the right technology, and the right distribution partners, we can re-establish the partnership between physicians and pharmacists that brings a new level of transparency and patient care." House Rx's technology platform helps prescribers and pharmacists collaborate more effectively via one integrated system. Built based on in-depth feedback from pharmacists and physicians, the platform is designed specifically for the management of specialty medication, and includes built-in analytics to enable continuous improvement in operational efficiency and quality of care. The specialty medical practices that have already partnered with House Rx include Care Oncology Center, California; Sarcoma Oncology, California; Arthritis Northwest Washington; and Northwest Medical Specialties, Washington. About House Rx House Rx is a technology-enabled service company focused on making specialty medication more accessible and affordable. We do so by helping clinics dispense specialty medications to their patients in a medically-integrated way using pharmacist expertise and modern technology. By helping physicians and pharmacists collaborate on patient care, we're able to improve patient outcomes, lower the cost of care, and create a better experience for patients and their caregivers.

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DIGITAL HEALTHCARE

Nemaura Medical Launches Metabolic Health Program for Employers and Insurers

Nemaura Medical, Inc | January 14, 2022

Nemaura Medical, Inc.(“Nemaura” or the “Company”), a medical technology company focused on developing and commercializing non-invasive wearable diagnostic devices and supporting personalized lifestyle coaching programs, announces the launch for employers and insurers of Miboko, a new metabolic health program using a non-invasive glucose sensor along with an AI mobile application. The Company’s goal is to achieve broad adoption of Miboko as a form of preventative medicine for a wide user base through these commercial channels and is aligned with the general trend in consumer digital healthcare. “Introducing Miboko to the population at-large through employers and insurers will allow Nemaura to reach a much wider audience in much faster fashion than solely relying on a direct-to-consumer campaign, and in the Western world, these institutions are the most reliable gateway toward wider adoption of preventative health maintenance practices. Being aware of one’s metabolic health and how the body uniquely regulates sugar is key to one’s health. Patients, of course, want to be as informed as possible about their health, and employers and insurers are also aligned with patients in that regard, given the massive productivity losses and healthcare costs at stake on a larger scale across their employee and insured base, respectively. Miboko can help address this substantial market opportunity through our non-invasive, revolutionary approach to healthcare.” Nemaura CEO Dr. Faz Chowdhury Nemaura has also submitted a Premarket Approval (PMA) to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for approval of its glucose monitoring device as a Class 3 medical device. The Company’s PMA was the subject an on-site FDA bioresearch monitoring (BIMO) audit that generated a single Form 483 observation, for which the Company has committed to a full response this quarter. A follow-up BIMO audit of the clinical investigator site has also been scheduled for the current financial quarter. Miboko has been in development for nearly two years and addresses a significant mass market opportunity that the Company believes could benefit roughly a third to half of the population by using a non-invasive glucose sensor to measure and monitor a user’s metabolic health score, which is based on glucose tolerance or insulin resistance. Those with prediabetes or obesity concerns -- or even those looking to maintain better health through more careful glucose control -- may benefit from such a metabolic health program. How one’s body metabolizes sugar is the main influencer of one’s appetite, weight, sleep quality, and energy and mood levels and even plays a critical factor in chronic diseases (beyond just diabetes), such as heart disease and dementia. At the heart of the Miboko offering is Nemaura’s non-invasive glucose sensor that is designed to measure insulin resistance, reported as a metabolic health score, and priced to be highly affordable with the program running for an initial two-year period. The program also uses a mobile app to provide users with personalized information by tracking their metabolism. A user can find out how well their body responds to sugar through their metabolic health score — and how what they eat and what they do every day uniquely affects their metabolic health. Along with the capability to follow metabolic health progress on the app, Miboko users receive weekly and monthly reports that show and explain their body’s unique metabolic health score and a breakdown of how each of their habits are impacting their overall health and wellbeing. Suggestions for small, manageable changes to daily routines, such as eating more or less of a certain kind of food or exercising at a different time of day to coincide with peak energy levels, provide Miboko users with personalized, usable data. About Nemaura Medical, Inc. Nemaura Medical Inc. is a medical technology company developing and commercializing non-invasive wearable diagnostic devices. The company is currently commercializing sugarBEAT® and proBEAT™. sugarBEAT®, a CE mark approved Class IIb medical device, is a non-invasive and flexible continuous glucose monitor (CGM) providing actionable insights derived from real time glucose measurements and daily glucose trend data, which may help people with diabetes and pre-diabetes to better manage, reverse, and prevent the onset of diabetes. Nemaura has submitted a PMA (Premarket Approval Application) for sugarBEAT® to the U.S. FDA. proBEAT™ combines non-invasive glucose data processed using artificial intelligence and a digital healthcare subscription service and has been launched in the U.S. as a general wellness product as part of its BEAT®diabetes program that is currently undergoing pilot studies. Additionally, Nemaura has launched Miboko, a new metabolic health and well-being program using a non-invasive glucose sensor along with an AI mobile application that helps a user understand how certain foods and lifestyle habits can impact one’s overall metabolic health and well-being. Nemaura believes that up to half the population could benefit from a sensor and program that monitors metabolic health and well-being. The Company sits at the intersection of the global Type 2 diabetes market that is expected to reach nearly $59 billion by 2025, the $50+ billion pre-diabetic market, and the wearable health-tech sector for weight loss and wellness applications that is estimated to reach $60 billion by 2023.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

PRIA Healthcare Announces Investment from Aldrich Capital Partners

PRIA Healthcare Management | January 27, 2022

PRIA Healthcare Management (PRIA), a leader in technology-enabled Market Access services that accelerate the adoption and rapid commercialization of innovative devices and procedures, today announced a significant investment fromVirginiabased growth equity firm, Aldrich Capital Partners. With the support of growth capital, PRIA Healthcare will quickly expand its Market Access solutions to innovative Medtech companies facing clinical trials and early reimbursement challenges of novel and life changing therapies. "After bootstrapping PRIA since our founding in 2012, we could see it was time for us to take the next step as the business grew and the needs in the market continued to expand. After meeting with many potential partners, we chose to work with the team at Aldrich Capital Partners because of their deep experience within our space and enormous set of resources they will bring to the table, outside of just capital." Mike Simon, Founder and CEO of PRIA Healthcare PRIA looks to further advance its mission to provide patients and providers across dozens of specialties access to innovative medical devices. PRIA's deep expertise in early reimbursement strategy, clinical trial reimbursement programs, and market-leading patient access programs ultimately enhance the market success of ground-breaking medical device procedures. The investment will be used to develop new products and services, as well as expand its reach to additional medical device manufacturers accelerating PRIA's already impressive growth rate. PRIA and Aldrich Capital Partners share a common vision around the importance of patient-centric services within the life sciences ecosystem. "Over the last several years, we have set out to invest in an innovative patient services business serving the life sciences segment and after meeting the PRIA team, we were immediately impressed", saysRaz Zia, General Partner of Aldrich Capital. "The sector-specific expertise, use of technology and vision set PRIA apart from other vendors in the space and we are excited to leverage our resources, relationships and decades of experience in scaling businesses to help the PRIA team realize their full potential." Informed by clinical data, PRIA partners with leading medical device manufactures and emerging medical device start-ups across the country and uses centralized, data-driven process workflows to deliver coordinated patient access programs that navigate the complexity of coding, coverage and payment for novel procedures. PRIA brings together patients, providers, medical device manufacturers and health insurers to ensure patients receive the best possible care for their situation. About PRIA Healthcare PRIA Healthcare Management is a patient access and reimbursement solutions company specializing in patient-based appeals of denied care. PRIA partners with medical device companies, healthcare providers, and healthcare organizations to ensure that patients are afforded appropriate coverage for the care that they are prescribed. Guided by the PRIA Patient Access Process our team of Patient Access Specialists have the experience and expertise to ensure that patient's rights to prescribed care will always be exercised to the fullest extent. About Aldrich Capital Partners Aldrich Capital Partners supports disruptive innovation in healthcare IT, fintech, and application software by investing equity capital in privately held growing companies. Founded by experienced investors and operators, who were also successful entrepreneurs, the founders of Aldrich Capital have been responsible for over$1 billionin technology investments since 1999. Both an operations partner and board-level advisor, ACP brings its portfolio companies strategic insight and access to a broad network of relationships built over 50 combined years of entrepreneurship and investing. Aldrich Capital Partners was founded in 2014 and has offices in Silicon Valley and theWashington, DCmetro area.

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Spotlight

The investiture ceremony for Jonathan B. Perlin, MD, PhD, MSHA, FACP, FACMI, President, HCA Clinical Services Group and Chief Medical Officer, as the Chairman of the American Hospital Association was held at the AHA’s Annual Membership Meeting in Washington, D.C. recently.

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