The latest digital health news briefs for June 11.
Easing pain with VR in Paris
Healthy Mind, a French startup using virtual reality headsets to curb pain in emergency rooms, is being used at Saint-Joseph Hospital in Paris, according to a Reuters report. The startup has landed a $20,000 prize from The University of Adelaide in Australia and has plans to present the technology to Microsoft in Seattle.
"Thanks to a virtual reality headset connected to a computer, the patient is transported according to his preferences in realistic natural environments like the forest or the mountain and can thus forget his condition," the company explains on its website.
Still more funding for Propeller
Respiratory sensor company Propeller Health has raised an additional undisclosed strategic investment from McKesson Ventures to add to its recent $20 million round.
"Propeller's strong base of clinical evidence demonstrates meaningful benefits to patients and all key stakeholders involved in delivering patient care. We are excited for their continued success as part of the 'digital supply chain,' an emerging category that will be integral to the future of medicine," Carrie Hurwitz Williams, principal of McKesson Ventures, said in a statement. "McKesson Ventures is uniquely positioned to help accelerate growth in the digital supply chain as our healthcare system becomes increasingly connected via secure data exchange and the use of digital therapies continues to rise."
A recent survey found that 94 percent of doctors and 90 percent of hospital leaders reported that mobile technology is improving patient safety and outcomes in regulated healthcare industries. The Black Book research survey, which was sent out to 770 hospital users and 1,279 doctors, found that more than two-thirds of survey-takers reported ongoing challenges with buy-in of mobile platforms in their facilities.
"Stakeholders across the healthcare industry are in the quest of finding solutions to use comprehensive real-time data and connectivity cleverly to advance patient safety, productivity and profitability," Doug Brown, president of Black Book Market Research, said in a statement. "Organizations are adopting secure text messaging platforms because texts are convenient, as well.”
The survey reports that 96 percent of hospitals are either investing or planning to invest in a comprehensive clinical communication before the end of the year.
Inside the gait
Researchers at Saarland University in Germany are developing a digital assistant that aims to help runners prevent injury, called the Footstriker. The wearable is worn on the runner’s body and employs electro-stimulation to ensure the runner moves correctly. While the runner is moving it sends painless surges from the electrodes to the runner’s calf. The user also carries an EMS generator, control unit and an Ardunio microcontroller on them. The runner’s shoes also have pressure sensors, allowing researchers to see what part of the foot the runner is striking.
The technology was on display at the Cebit, computer fair today.