Meridian Health and Cypak launch joint venture iMPak Health to develop wireless health monitoring devices and services
Neptune, NJ and Stockholm, Sweden - Meridian Health and Cypak announced today the launch of their new joint venture, iMPak Health, Inc. iMPak Health’s mission will be to develop smart, easy to use wireless devices and services to screen and monitor health and overall well being globally.
“Low cost, consumer friendly embedded technology and service solutions will be introduced to many segments of the health care market through iMPak Health,” says Salvatore Inciardi, FACHE, senior vice president for Business Development at Meridian Health, a leading hospital and health care provider serving New Jersey.
“This joint venture puts iMPak in a unique position to leverage reliable, low cost, easy to use solutions based on Near Field Communications, embedded sensors, and storage capabilities from Cypak,” says Per Nathanaelson, CEO of Cypak. “Our intent is to broadly improve the user experience of the healthcare consumer by rapidly bringing solutions to market for a number of conditions or health related concerns.”
The initial product offering from iMPak will be aimed at helping patients and physicians manage pain. iMPak’s Health Journal for Pain is a portable, lightweight, digital, wirelessly-enabled diary that empowers patients to easily record their pain levels before and after their prescribed medication regimen, providing physicians with readily available, useful, patient information and reports.
“Currently, physicians encourage their patients to keep a handwritten diary of their pain intensity and response to pain medication,” says Sandra Elliott, director, Consumer Technology and Service Development at Meridian Health. “It is often a cumbersome process for patients, and seldom provides physicians with actionable data about the patient’s response to their prescribed treatment.”
Research has shown that patient compliance with keeping paper diaries is low – resulting in a lack of complete information for physicians and timely intervention. Physicians often rely on a patient’s own recollection to determine if treatment changes are warranted. The highly portable format of the Health Journal for Pain is designed for ease of use and improved compliance to allow for a more timely intervention by physicians.
“Pain is considered the fifth vital sign and is critical to overall health and well being,” says Elliott. “It is one of the most common reasons people seek care from their physician. If we can help patients and physicians better manage pain through a device that helps collect meaningful and timely information, we will consider it a major achievement.”
The Health Journal for Pain is developed around Cypak’s Touch and Post technology and Near Field Communication (NFC), a two-way communication technology based on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) which enables wireless communication between devices over a short distance. The technology is primarily used globally in mobile phones for public transportation and payment.
The Health Journal for Pain will use the Continua Certified Smart Cable reader, developed by Cypak and A&D Medical, for PC- based wireless downloads, as well as a mobile application on NFC enabled cell phones. Patients will touch the A&D reader or a cell phone with their journal and their pain readings automatically post to a back end monitoring system.
According to the American Pain Foundation, nearly 50 million Americans suffer from some form of chronic pain and the World Health Organization estimates that 1 in 5 people suffer from moderate to chronic pain. Patients being treated for cancer, chronic headaches, fibromyalgia, chronic back pain and arthritis are among those affected daily by pain.
“We anticipate considerable demand for the Health Journal for Pain to be high, and are excited about the future potential offerings by iMPak Health,” says Albert Baker, vice president for Strategic Alliances at Cypak. “Product offerings in the near future will target diabetes, depression, weight management and pulmonary conditions such as Asthma. Many products will leverage both Cypak’s NFC and ‘lab on a chip’ technology to provide solutions to support and service Meridian Health’s core client base.“
Meridian Health is a leading not-for-profit health care organization in New Jersey, comprising a university teaching hospital, three community hospitals, a children’s hospital, and in-home and community-based services that include home health services, skilled nursing centers, physician practices; rehabilitation and fitness centers; occupational health; home medical equipment and in-home safety technology; ambulance and medical transportation services; as well as outpatient laboratory, imaging, and surgery centers.
Meridian Health is named among the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For, and has consistently been rated among the top performing health systems in New Jersey, and is the recipient of numerous state and national recognitions for patient care quality and nursing excellence. For more information, please visit www.meridianhealth.com.
Cypak AB is a privately owned technology provider based in Stockholm, Sweden. Cypak customers are leaders in their segments in USA, Europe, and Japan. Cypak has developed the CPK082 application specific integrated circuit particularly for medication and vital sign monitoring and takes a leading role in international standardization and the Continua Health Alliance. For more information, please visit www.cypak.com