Royal Philips and Innovative Imaging Technologies (ITT) have announced a new “tele-ultrasound” product that would allow clinicians to conduct two-way audio-video calls while streaming live ultrasound imaging.
The technology, according to a release, is built on Philip’s Lumify — an FDA-cleared, smartphone-connected ultrasound system — and ITT’s multi-disciplinary healthcare collaboration platform, Reacts. Philips is demoing the tele-ultrasound system this week at the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine’s Annual Convention in New York City.
“Reacts’ secure, versatile, and interactive collaboration platform deployed on technology solutions like Philips Lumify can change education and patient care models and enable a positive disruptive change to healthcare,” Dr. Yanick Beaulieu, CEO and founder of IIT, said in a statement. “For years, clinicians in the field have been trying to piece together systems that offer real-time, interactive tele-ultrasound capabilities. Now it has truly arrived.”
Use of the tele-ultrasound system is driven by a smartphone or similar device. While on a call, users have the option to speak directly with a remote clinician by using the face camera, show the position of the ultrasound probe using the front-facing camera, or switch to a live stream of the ultrasound that both parties can view simultaneously. Outside of expert consults, the companies sees the new technology as a potential resource for teaching institutions, emergency medical service providers, disaster relief providers, and systems that support satellite clinics.
“By combining exceptional mobility and reliability, Philips Lumify with Reacts will open up new doors for the way clinicians collaborate, educate, and train,” Randy Hamlin, Point-of-Care Business Leader at Philips, said in a statement. “This all-in-one tele-ultrasound solution will enhance care delivery by bringing even more confidence to ultrasound clinicians and removing longstanding barriers in education, support, and training.”
Outside of Lumify, Philips has been ramping up its digital and telehealth efforts for some time. Last year the company received additional FDA clearance for eCareCoordinator, a telehealth application that allows clinicians to access daily summaries containing data from connected devices. More recently, the company was named a leading investor in remote patient monitoring company LindaCare’s Series B funding round.