Bradley Merrill Thompson, a Member of the Firm in the Health Care and Life Sciences practice in the Washington, DC, office, was featured in a report discussing new medical devices and the outlook for the future.

"Approvals are grinding to a halt and enforcement is reaching new heights," said Thompson. "Unfortunately, the shift is slowing down product develop­ment, and driving much of it overseas."

The leading R&D area, according to Thompson, is broadly referred to as connected health, which includes the narrower area of mobile health. Connect-ed health is basically establishing mech­anisms for different medical devices to speak to each other, and to dump their data into the electronic health record.

"All laboratory tests, all images from x-ray or MRI and other such equipment, treadmill tests, defibrillator data, pace­maker data and basically any other elec­tronic medical device would dump test results into electronic record that could help caregivers trend data over time and pull up key test results," Thomp­son said.

"A subset of that is mobile health, where these sorts of things are done with respect to devices that patients use in their home or on the go," Thompson explained. Blood-glucose meters, blood-pressure tests, and other equipment that can be used remotely might send data through a common, ordinary smart phone to the patient's caregiver. For example, the iPad will be a platform for the deliv­ery of care in the future, according to Thompson.

"Consumers are most interested in many of the mobile applications that can be run through an app on a smart phone," Thompson said.

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