iRobot grows alliance with inTouchHealth

January 31, 2012 in Medical Technology

BEDFORD, MA – iRobot Corp., which develops and markets robotic technology-based solutions, will invest $6 million and expand its partnership with InTouch Health, a remote presence telemedicine solution provider.

The $6 million investment represents a minority position in the company, executives said in making the announcement on Jan. 31.

[See also: Robot, MD: Will machines replace doctors?]

The move expands upon the joint development and licensing agreement iRobot announced in July 2011, which was established to explore opportunities for healthcare applications on iRobot platforms, such as the iRobot Ava mobile robotics platform. Under the expanded agreement, InTouch Health will provide access to FDA regulated healthcare facilities, providing iRobot with an initial foray into hospitals, emergency care facilities, patient wards and operating and procedure rooms. Working closely together, iRobot and InTouch will collaborate on a wide variety of technologies across each company’s patent portfolio and leverage combined expertise in remote presence telemedicine solutions.

“Currently operating in over 80 hospitals in the U.S. and around the world, InTouch is in a very unique position as one of the first developers of FDA-cleared telemedicine devices,” said Colin Angle, chairman and CEO of iRobot. “iRobot’s investment will further align these two leaders, creating a best of breed partnership that will develop robots for remote healthcare and assistive technologies for the elderly.”

“As evident from the demonstrations of Ava, iRobot is the industry leader in navigation, mobility, manipulation and artificial intelligence,” said Yulun Wang, chairman and CEO of InTouch Health. “Working together, InTouch Health and iRobot will pioneer remote presence in healthcare settings, providing anytime anywhere patient care in hospital ICU’s, patient wards and operating and procedure rooms.

[See also: Connected Health: Technology First or People? ]

InTouch Health has more than 400 hospital locations on six continents enrolled in its Remote Presence network for the delivery of telemedicine services such as stroke, critical care, cardiology, trauma, pediatrics, neonatology, psychiatry, language translation and clinical education and surgical/procedure mentoring.

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