Stinson Leonard Street

Payers, Providers, and Health Technology Experts Join Forces at DeviceTalks 2018

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While DeviceTalks 2018 was held in the same location as the 2017 iteration of the conference, it was clear that its reputation had grown and attendance had grown with it. Spread across three floors of the Intercontinental Riverfront in downtown St. Paul, DeviceTalks brought together senior staff from across the United States for two days of sessions covering everything from regulatory and clinical trial best practices to how best to pitch medtech focused journalists.

While, as the name suggests, DeviceTalks was a great forum for those in the medical device field to hear from industry leaders, this year’s conference brought together leaders from other segments of the healthcare spectrum. Payers and providers sat on innovation panels, digital health executives talked about working as a distributed company, and day one afternoon keynote speaker Heidi Dohse even gave the patient’s perspective. Attendees not only came out of the conference with a deeper knowledge of their field, but also a greater sense of where the field fits within modern healthcare.

We’re thankful to the myriad Medical Alley companies that participated in or sponsored DeviceTalks 2018, including: 3M, Abbott, B. Braun OEM, Boston Scientific, Cyient Insights, Devicix by Nortech, Entellus Medical, Finesse Partners, Garz & Fricke, Healthlink, Icon, Jama Software, Jordi Labs, Mayo Clinic, MDIC, Medmarc, Medtronic, Minnetronix, NAMSA, NxThera, Padilla, Promed, R&Q, Reimbursement Strategies LLC, Revox Sterilization Solutions, Rotation Medical, RxFunction, Stinson Leonard Street LLP, University of Minnesota,University of St. Thomas, Valtronic, and Ximedica.

Below are some highlights from the conference, including St. Paul mayor Melvin Carter’s welcome address from the first day:

New Kid on the Blockchain

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Over time, advancements in communication have made data and information progressively more obtainable. From medical charts and billing information to test results and clinical trials, the healthcare industry, for one, is certainly not short on data.

In this Information Age, individuals and organizations alike are becoming increasingly reliant on computers and the data, analytics and insights they provide.

But health and medical data are strewn across countless fiefdoms with very little cross over. Reconciling data scattered across an array of hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, labs and insurance companies is no small feat.

To exacerbate this situation, more and more “things” generating a considerable amount of health and medical data are being added to the internet of things everyday as hospitals are becoming digitally smarter and individuals are using health- and wellness-related mobile apps and wearables.


Finding a Cure for Medical Diagnostic Patentability

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Anyone considering a therapeutic drug regimen for a medical condition wants to know they need that drug. Medical professionals also want to accurately diagnose a disease to ensure the right therapy is prescribed or to know that a patient is responding positively. Symptoms alone may not be specific enough to provide an accurate diagnosis of the underlying disease.

Medical diagnostics companies are developing diagnostic assays that allow medical professionals to accurately diagnose medical conditions and determine a patient’s responsiveness to therapy.


The Future is Here: How Drones are Modernizing the Healthcare Industry

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As use cases for drones continue to expand, industries whose connections to this technology were not obvious are now capturing headlines on a routine basis. The health and life sciences industry is an example of an emerging major player in the field. Delivering everything from blood and plasma to medication, defibrillators and condoms, drones are revolutionizing the health care industry by modernizing how medical care is administered.

In January, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that they had received more than one million unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), commonly referred to as drones, registrations. To put this number into perspective, in the 115 years since the Wright brother’s first flight of Kitty Hawk in 1903, there have been only 350,000 manned aircraft registered with the FAA. In contrast, in just the 18 months since the FAA’s issuance of the first regulations specifically tailored for the operation
of UAS, drones have literally taken off as hobbyists, commercial operators and public use operators (i.e., first responders, police/fire rescue, border patrol) flock to the skies.


Reducing Risk in Field Sales Operations

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Field sales employees are critical to distribution and ultimately achieving revenue goals. However, the inability of employers in the supply chain to directly supervise field sales employees creates under appreciated risks which may negatively impact profitability.

In some cases, liability may be directly caused by the acts or omissions of the employee. In other cases, field sales employees may be exposed to risks by third parties that are not fully visible to or within the control of employers.

Careful evaluation of these risks and implementation of policies, procedures and employee training can help ensure that your field sales team remains an asset and not a liability.

In Part 2 of this two-part series, we will address blood borne pathogen risks and avoiding OSHA retaliation claims.


In Part 1 we focused on the risks associated with electronic vulnerabilities and distracted driving.


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