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AirStrip purchases wireless monitor developer
March 29, 2014

By Peggy O'Hare, San Antonio Express-News

San Antonio-based AirStrip has purchased the assets of a California company that developed wireless technology capable of monitoring vital signs in high-risk pregnancies and will pursue federal approval to expand its use into patients' homes.

Terms were not disclosed for AirStrip's acquisition of Sense4Baby Inc., a wireless fetal and maternal monitoring system provider based in La Jolla, Calif. The technology has already been approved for use in medical settings, such as doctors' offices, clinics and ambulances.

"As health care moves into the consumer space, it becomes much more person-centered," said Dr. Cameron Powell, Air-Strip's co-founder and chief medical information officer. "Having an application that can have an immediate impact on the outcome of the patient in the home environment makes a lot of sense to us."

Sense4Baby's technology uses non-invasive sensors to monitor fetal and maternal heart rates and contraction patterns. AirStrip licensed associated technology from the Gary and Mary West Health Institute, where it was originally researched.

The acquisition, which closed Monday, is the latest addition to AirStrip's product line. The company, formed in 2004, markets applications that allow hospitals and doctors to monitor patients' vital signs and to view lab results, X-rays, CT scans, MRIs and electronic medical records on mobile tablets and phones.

AirStrip's products have become more popular as mergers increase among hospital systems with incompatible technological platforms, Powell said.

"What AirStrip is trying to do is simplify a very complicated mess in health care, where you have patients that are mobile, caregivers that are mobile," he said. "Everybody's all over the place, whether they're in their home, in a clinic, in an ambulance, in a surgery center, in rehab at the hospital."

The AirStrip One platform brings various patient data and medical records together for viewing in a single source that does not require doctors to use multiple log-ins or access multiple systems. The company also has partnered with Microsoft to make its AirStrip One Cardiology dashboard available on Windows desktops.

The San Antonio operation also recently formed a dedicated business unit to commercialize scientific breakthroughs and innovations by academic medical centers and others for use in clinical settings on AirStrip One's platform.

"That has never really been done before in health care," Powell said. "We're going to market with some of the biggest names in the country."

Last month, AirStrip announced its innovation marketplace program's first two collaboration agreements with the Michigan Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care at the University of Michigan and with MedStar Health in Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

AirStrip is a private company, so it does not discuss its earnings. It would not immediately disclose its total number of employees Friday or the number of hospitals and doctors it serves.

 

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