We bring you this week’s medtech news, from Boston and beyond:
1. The VA Center for Innovation Launches a New Initiative
On May 15, the VA will be launch a VA Innovation Creation Series, which will hopefully accelerate the development of prosthetics and assistive technologies for Veterans. The series will be launched at the Palo Alto VA Medical Center and will include a Prosthetics & Assistive Technology Innovation Challenge for designers, engineers and problem solvers, who can contribute design solutions for proposed problems. The series will also culminate in a two day “make-a-thon” event in July at the VA in Richmond, Virginia.
“We are seeking 3D printed design surrounding new devices in this arena,” says Andrea Ippolito, a White House Innovation Fellow for the VA. “We think this fits in with a larger movement in healthcare surrounding 3D printed devices.”
2. Eli Lilly and Company Heads to Cambridge
Eli Lilly & Company announced this week their plans to establish a drug delivery and device innovation center in Kendall Square. According to a release, the center will allow leading life science experts and organizations to explore the use of emerging technologies and connectivity for drug delivery.
“The Lilly Cambridge Innovation Center complements a deliberate push by the company to be an industry leader in providing convenient, reliable drug delivery and device innovation,” Lilly Chairman, President and CEO John Lechleiter, PhD, said in a statement. “Locating in Cambridge is an important strategic move for achieving this goal, as it provides us access to a concentration of high-caliber academic institutions, cutting-edge life science and technology companies, and some of the world’s leading talent.”
3. Hospitals Seek Expanded External Support, Study Shows
According to the L.E.K. Consulting 2015 Strategic Hospital Priorities Study, hospitals are seeking external partners, rather than using internal resources, to fulfill high-priority needs more frequently. This transition could lead to opportunities for stronger innovation within large clinical organizations, especially in the areas of medical device development and digital health solutions.
“We believe that the MedTech industry has hit an inflection point and many of the trends are accelerating, providing critical implications for MedTech suppliers,” Jonas Funk, managing director in L.E.K.’s global MedTech practice, said in a statement.
4. HHS Expands the Pioneer ACO Program
The Pioneer Accountable Care Organization (ACO) program, piloted by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, will be expanding, according to an announcement from the Department of Health and Human Services this week. The program has already saved payers and providers $384 million in just two years.
This innovative global pay model was created as a pilot project several years ago and has included several local healthcare organizations, including the Beth Israel Deaconess Care Organization. According to the announcement, an independent evaluation report found that the ACO model saves an average of approximately $300 per year for each participating beneficiary while also continuing to deliver high-quality patient care. We like what we’re hearing! Expansion plans involve scaling the Pioneer ACO model into other Medicare programs.
Jenni Whalen is the Executive Assistant of Editorial at Upworthy. She was previously MedTech Boston's Managing Editor and has an MS in Journalism from Boston University, as well as a BA in Psychology from Bucknell University. Whalen has written for Greatist, Boston magazine, AZ Central Healthy Living and the New England Journal of Medicine, among other places. She has also worked as a conference planner, ghost writer, researcher and content developer.
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