Scripps, Anthem help test Sentrian's COPD remote monitoring technology

By Jonah Comstock
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SentrianAliso Viego, California-based Sentrian, the remote patient monitoring company formerly known as Jointly Health, will work with Scripps Translational Science Institute to study its technology on 2,000 patients with COPD. All the patients are members of CareMore, an Anthem subsidiary that focuses on elderly patients and connected care.

The Sentrian Remote Patient Intelligence platform uses biosensors to monitor patients remotely, but the company uses machine learning to customize the alert parameters for each patient. CEO Dean Sawyer explained in a call with MobiHealthNews last year:

"Every company’s doing very basic binary alerting,” he said. “If you gain two pounds of weight, send an alert. If your blood pressure goes up a few points, send an alert. The problem with that is you miss a lot, and there’s a lot of false alarms. … But being able to personalize the rules for an individual patient, there’s [currently] no way to do that. … We’ve built tools that use natural language, to iterate those models as much as [customers] want. The initial rules can be customized for the individual, which is going to allow them to be much more specific, sensitive, and to eliminate any false alarms.”

The objective of the research study will be to assess whether the Sentrian platform, which is not yet FDA cleared, can accurately detect patient deterioration in advance. If it can, it could reduce readmissions and decrease costs for the care of COPD patients. The study was announced in January, but with Scripps signing on it will be expanding the time frame of the research to a full 12 months. One thousand patients will use the technology, and 1,000 will form the control group.

Correction: A previous version of this article said the study had begun in January; it was actually just announced at that time.

"This research collaboration with Sentrian and CareMore fits nicely with our mission at Scripps to study the latest advances in digital medicine technologies as part of our effort to replace traditional one-size-fits-all medicine with precision health care and to accelerate patient access to effective new approaches to treating illnesses," Dr. Steven Steinhubl, director of digital medicine at STSI, said in a statement.

Sentrian officially launched under its new name last fall, and at the same time announced a total of $12 million in funding. The company had picked up $3.8 million in seed funding by last May, but then raised an $8 million first round in November from Reed Elsevier Ventures, Frost Data Capital and Telus.

CareMore hired Dr. Sachin Jain, former chief innovation officer at Merck, in January, around the same time it began the pilot with Sentrian.

"In the digital health space, there’s so much smoke and there’s actually so little fire, so I think what we’re trying to find out is where the fire is,” Jain told MobiHealthNews at the time. “What I’m hoping we can do is both find the fire and actually build it. One of the opportunities is to co-develop technologies with digital health startups and companies and that’s something I know people are enthusiastic about.”