Digital health news briefs for 3/10/2017

By Heather Mack
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Former FDA deputy commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb is the rumored choice to head the agency, with the full nomination expected by the end of the day. Like most of the Trump Administration’s other high-office picks, Gottlieb is known for his anti-regulatory stance and is in favor of speeding up the drug-approval process, especially for older generics. Considered more mainstream than earlier choices for the job, Gottleib brings significant experience in both government and medicine, and is regarded as having a comfortable position with both investors and pharma. Since Gottlieb left the FDA in 2007, he has worked as an advisor to investment firms, as a fellow at the Washington think tank American Enterprise Institute and is currently a partner at venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates.

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Rothman Institute, which is one of the largest orthopedic practices in the country, has expanded its existing relationship with Force Therapeutics to offer the technology company’s digital platform of pre-and post-surgical care plans. Rothman has used the platform for three years, accounting for more than 15,000 patients who have accessed Force’s interactive, video-based exercise and educational program. Forty-one surgeons at Rothman now use it regularly in their practice, and the organization expects that number to grow as they expand the Force platform into spine and sports medicine.

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Harley Street Clinic, part of UK’s HCA Healthcare system, is using the MedoPad remote monitoring platform to track pediatric cancer patients. The platform offers an app to sync with a wearable to monitor medication usage and side effects, symptom logging and other vital signs, and patients can also access educational resources and message doctors.

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French telemedicine company BewellConnect, which offers a suite of connected devices including a smart thermometer, blood pressure monitors and a smart blood glucose meter called MyGluco, recently launched its services in Boston. This marks the company’s first US market since launching in 1997, and the focus will be on the diabetes management offering.

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RedBrick Health, which makes a wellness and chronic condition management for employers, health systems and provider partners, has teamed up with healthcare concierge company ClearCost Health to launch a mobile-first navigation and communication platform to act as a hub for employer benefits and wellbeing services.

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CityMD, a network of walk-in, urgent care clinics that works with partner providers, hospitals and health systems as well as offering self-service kiosks, has partnered with Montefiore Health System to improve access to primary, specialty and urgent care services of both organizations. Through the collaboration, Montefiore will be CityMD’s exclusive provider in the Bronx and Westchester, and patients can also benefit from the online appointment and follow-up features of CityMD’s platform. As 60 percent of CityMD’s patients do not have a regular care provider, the organization works to provide a continuum of care within its provider networks.