Cybernet Medical awarded patent for in-home patient monitoring technology and equipment

Ann Arbor 03 June 2002Cybernet Medical, a developer of biometric monitoring technology and medical devices for outpatient care, has been granted the award of U.S. patent 6,375,614 covering the broad implementation of a variety of Internet-enabled medical products and the data services which support them. The Cybernet Medical patent continuation, awarded April 23, 2002, includes the innovative use of Internet and wireless connectivity for portable physiological measurement instruments like EEG, EKG, weight, blood pressure, temperature, peak flow and respiration volume, pulse oximetry and other systems.

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This patent, a continuation of U.S. patent 6,050,940, covers the company's MedStar Internet patient record and outpatient data collection products, as well as products in the development pipeline supporting Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) review of patient record data, cellular phone-based data collection, and other Internet connected vital signs monitoring equipment.

The company is also licensing Internet-enabled instrumentation, data services software and patent coverage to medical groups, facilities and equipment manufacturers interested in offering complementary outpatient care using Internet communications. "While there is already a thriving market for independent disease management services, we believe that medical professional groups, hospitals, and other providers will put in-home patient monitoring into mainstream medical practice", stated Cybernet Systems CEO Chuck Jacobus.

"These organisations employ the majority of health care professionals, treat patients with chronic diseases and work to secure appropriate home care for outpatients. Cybernet Medical's goal is to provide these organisations with low cost and reliable home-based physiological data collection products and the Web-based electronic patient record keeping systems to support them. Outsourcing disease management doesn't make sense when it is more cost-effective to keep it in-house, enabling health care professionals to more closely monitor their patients' needs", explained Mr. Jacobus.

The patent includes a description of how physiological measurements are remotely taken in conjunction with more conventional video and sound information, and then transmitted through wired or wireless packet networks to central processing and archival systems. It also focuses on Internet Web-based electronic patient record keeping systems supporting PDA, cellular phone and other means of record access and use.

"Cybernet Medical was the first to recognise the significance of linking remotely collected physiological data to the Internet, and continues to lead this field through the introduction of lower cost data collection devices and on-line means for health care professionals to monitor chronic care patients", Mr. Jacobus added. "We are positioned to help our customers set up and run their own infrastructure, or we can operate the data infrastructure for our customers on a leased basis."

The MedStar interface device and accompanying collection server, together called the MedStar System, is designed to improve in-home patient chronic disease management. Purpose-built for hospitals and disease management companies, the battery-powered and portable MedStar device collects outpatient physiological data from multiple off-the-shelf instruments, such as blood pressure cuffs and weight scales.

It then securely transmits the data over a standard phone line to the Cybernet Medical collection server, located at a hospital or disease management facility, for retrieval and analysis. Instead of using a modem that would drain the batteries after a single transmission, the MedStar interface device utilises a proprietary dialling protocol to transmit digitised data over standard telephone lines to the Cybernet collection server.

Used in conjunction with the MedStar System, Cybernet's Internet database server system establishes a secure Internet Web site that enables health care professionals to retrieve and view chronic patient physiological data transmitted from a patient's home over standard phone lines. Health care professionals can then analyse changes in a patient's condition and make appropriate action recommendations, resulting in fewer patient interventions and emergency hospitalisations.

Cybernet Medical is an innovative, technology-based company focused on using state-of-the-art systems to augment the way chronic care patients are monitored and diagnosed. Through research funded by NASA, the National Institute of Health and Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), Cybernet Medical has developed and patented electronic devices, complex network and server systems, database solutions, and Web-based user interfaces for the collection and management of biometric data. Cybernet Medical is a division of Cybernet Systems, a research and development firm based in Michigan.


Leslie Versweyveld

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