We take a look a this week’s biggest developments, research and investment news from the world of health tech.
A Medical Technology Group (MTG) report revealed this week that the NHS is at risk of missing an opportunity to harness the potential of technology. The report outlined that nine out of ten regional NHS plans do not pay enough attention to the role of medical technology, and that only four of the 44 regional plans included any meaningful reference to the use of innovative technology, despite this being a requirement in NHS guidelines as a duty to innovate. Chair of the MTG, Barbara Harpham, said: “All bar a tiny handful of regional NHS plans have failed to address the need for innovation and technology to improve patient outcomes” and that “regional NHS organisations must seize the unique opportunity to re-evaluate the use of technology and take full advantage of its possibilities.”
This week, Medtronic announced that it is due to acquire an AI-powered personalised nutrition platform, Nutrino, with the deal expected to close by the end of January 2019. The companies have a history of partnerships, collaborating on a number of programmes for Diabetes patients since 2016. This acquisition is likely to enhance Medtronic’s offering to Diabetic patients as Nutrino’s AI-driven personalised insights and predictive glycemic response algorithm will be integrated with Medtronic’s CGM system. This algorithm helps predict how a user’s body will react to various foods, which is essential to managing Diabetes, according to medical experts.
Abbott launched a new dorsal root ganglion (DRG) Invisible Trial System for chronic pain management this week. Designed as a non-opioid treatment option for patients, the new device delivers DRG stimulation in the form of electrical pulses to block pain signals, thereby alleviating neuropathic pain conditions for patients. According to clinical research findings, DRG therapy can deliver more effective pain relief than conventional spinal cord stimulation (SCS) therapy. The company highlights that patients can opt for a minimally invasive trial therapy before receiving the permanent implant for long term pain relief. Abbott neuromodulation medical director Allen Burton explains, “With Abbott’s pioneering work to provide new options to treat different types of chronic pain, the intuitive DRG Invisible Trial System gives pain sufferers new hope.”
A new medical technology firm, Camcon Medical, launched in the UK earlier this week. Specialising in the precise, high-speed and low-energy control of liquid and gas for the healthcare industry, Camcon Medical aims to promote its Binary Actuation Technology (BAT) to the medical devices market. According to the firm, BAT could optimise the flow of fluid in clinical or laboratory environments to enhance the performance of existing medical devices and could be used to create new devices requiring fluid control. With particular focus on respiratory care, Camcon Medical aims to use its technology to improve oxygen delivery and address issues regarding accurate dosing, which currently result in an estimated 2,000 to 4,000 UK patient deaths each year. The company’s director, Charles Potter stated that the BAT “can deliver true innovation within this market, demonstrating the three dimensions of value that are critical in healthcare, including clinical benefit, patient quality of life and economic value.”
Last week, L’Oreal launched its La Roche-Posay My Skin Track UV, which is the first battery-free wearable electronic device to measure UV exposure, and is available for purchase through Apple. Developed alongside dermatologists to ensure it is a safe and effective skincare product, the device is activated by the sun and powered by the user’s smartphone using near-field communication (NFC). It can provide instant status updates and store up to three months of data, relaying stored data to its accompanying app through a single-touch function. The device is 12mm wide and 6mm high, waterproof, and can be clipped to clothing or accessories to integrate seamlessly into users’ lives, meaning the device is innovative in its approach toward sun-safety.
Interesting reads for the weekend:
- First ever drone-delivered kidney is no worse for wear
- Post-Google, what does the glucose-sensing contact lens landscape look like?
- NHS hospital introduces cloud-based outpatient services
- Diabetes: the inventor trying to make injections pain-free
- Nine digital social care projects to receive share of £700k funding
- Personalised 3D-printed models of patients’ hearts can be used to plan surgery
- Malaria-detecting technology scoops James Dyson Award runner-up prize