By Suzanne Hodsden
Qualcomm Life is bringing its expertise in wireless technology to two new strategic partnerships — one with Philips, and the other with German-based Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals (Boehringer). Qualcomm will work with Philips to integrate the company’s 2net platform with Philips recently launched line of connected health products and with Boehringer to measure patient compliance with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) inhalers.
Last month, Philips launched four new connected products to help patients manage their health and stave off the development of chronic disease. A watch, blood pressure monitor, inner-ear thermometer, and smart scale are all integrated with Philips cloud-based digital platform, HealthSuite, through a specially designed app. HealthSuite, a collaboration between Philips and Salesforce, has been in development since 2014.
Through the partnership with Qualcomm Life, Philips will team up with Qualcomm Life’s HIPPA-compliant 2net platform and ecosystem, according to a press release. HealthSuite app users will have access to a host of new medical-grade products, including medication dispensers, biosensors, ventilators, point-of-care diagnostics, and blood glucose meters. By using a broader range of monitoring devices, the HealthSuite app will provide a broader picture of the patient’s overall health status.
The partnership also will grant Qualcomm Life access to Philips’ data management and storage solution, broadening potential analytics for Qualcomm Life products and services. Qualcomm President Rick Valencia commented that the collaboration with Philips will help his company further grow its ecosystem so that it can become the “underpinning of the Internet of Medical Things.”
“Patient-self-management combined with 24/7 connectivity to a care network is an emerging model that enables scalable chronic disease management for patients and provider,” added Jeroen Tas, CEO of Connected Care and Health informatics at Philips, in a press release. “By collaborating with Qualcomm Life and leveraging its connectivity and wireless expertise, we aim to help care providers to engage better with their patients” to improve outcomes.
Qualcomm’s partnership with Boehringer will bring Qualcomm Life’s 2net platform to Boehringer’s COPD inhaler, Respimat. Ruchin Kansal, executive director and head of business innovation at Boehringer, said in a press statement that the new connected technology will help to improve adherence among patients using Boehringer inhalers by measuring both the quantity and quality of puffs taken.
Kansal told the San Diego Union Tribune that the company currently is working on a prototype of the connected inhaler, adding that “Decisions around FDA approvals will be made in the future after further assessments.”
In January, Qualcomm signed a similar deal with Novartis, aiming to connect the COPD medication Breezhaler to the 2net Platform. The deal built upon an existing partnership between the two companies, launched in 2014, to collect and aggregate data during clinical trials. Jointly, Qualcomm and Novartis have invested $100 million in an investment fund to develop digital solutions that move healthcare “beyond the pill.”