We take a look at this week’s biggest developments, research and investment news from the world of Health Tech.
AiDoc has received $7 million in a new funding round led by Tel Aviv VC firm TLV Partners. The start-up is planning to take its artificial intelligence-powered imaging tool into clinics, helping radiologists work through their case load faster. The company has built deep learning algorithms to analyse imaging and clinical data efficiently, enabling it to scan for visual abnormalities in medical scans. AiDoc will also use the funding to expand their research and development teams as well as embark on marketing plans for the United States and Israel.
Gett, the on-demand black cab app is partnering up with social care start-up Cera to deliver over the counter medicines and essential items to elderly patients. Cera uses technology to match up those needing care with an experienced carer at the right time and right place. Cera and Gett’s partnership will allow a carer, or the patient themselves, to request everything from painkillers and rehydration sachets to cough syrup, and many other non-prescription products. Dr Ben Maruthappu, co-founder and president of Cera, said: “This partnership provides patients with access to rapid, responsive and on-demand services that have proved successful in other industries, while empowering our carer-workers.”
Ohio-based clinical communications provider Doc Halo has raised $11 million in a series A round led by Bane Capital Ventures. Although Doc Halo has been operating for seven years in the clinical comms space, this is its first funding round, with both co-founders Dr.Jose Barreau and Dr.Amit Gupta self-funding the company initially with their own $5 million. Doc Halo provides a web and mobile-based replacement for pagers and consoles to facilitate hospital communications, and offer other features like on-call schedule management and critical lab integration. The new funding will contribute towards development in the area of patient engagement, where the company is currently beta testing its Patient Halo app.
Remote clinical trial company Science 37 has raised $29 million in a round led by Glynn Capital Management, bringing their total funding to $67 million. The company uses mobile technology to allow patients to participate in the trial from their own homes, “We’ve seen great success thus far in the model we developed. It has not only increased the number of people able to participate in clinical trials, but also reduced the time it takes to recruit by nearly 50 percent in some cases,” Dr. Noah Craft, co-founder and CEO of Science 37, said in a statement. They will also use the latest round of funding for additional development of NORA, hiring additional members of its clinical operations team to support more operation, and expansion into new US markets, new therapeutic areas, and eventually other countries.
Researchers may have stumbled across a new method to identify imperceptible fall risks among elderly patients and improve balance, all by using virtual reality. Although it may seem counterintuitive, researchers at the University of North Carolina and NC State used virtual reality to disorient study participants whilst they walked on a treadmill. From recording their movements, the research team of biomedical engineers was able to identify specific muscle responses that contributed towards loss of balance. Results published in the Nature Scientific Reports showed that the participants altered their gait to take wider and shorter steps.
Zoom, the Silicon Valley-based maker of the enterprise video conferencing platform is now offering a cloud-based video telehealth service, called Zoom for Telehealth. While the company’s primary role will focus as a technology provider, they have upped their healthcare focus via an integration with Epic. The features of the platform include video, audio and content-sharing; integration with point-of-care-peripherals; virtual waiting rooms; end-to-end encryption of all meeting data and instant messages; remote camera control capabilities, and open API and SDKs. “Eventually, we want to integrate as many EMR services as possible,” said Yuan. “We’re not the ones creating the programs or medical devices, so we can just focus on providing the developer platform that other companies can build their solutions onto,” Yuan said, Zoom founder and CEO.
Philips’ eCareManager, the company’s new FDA-cleared teleICU software, works to alleviate critical care team shortages through offering a platform connecting regular hospital staff with physicians trained specifically for work in the ICU and offering actionable insights to improve outcomes for patients with the most complicated cases. The software is source-agnostic, which enables hospitals to easily integrate the platform into their own workflows and foster coordination between bedside care teams and virtual physicians, resulting in intensivists monitoring more patients.