In 2020, 1.5 million Americans will need a total knee replacement.* That’s a pretty big number and does not even include any partial or incomplete surgeries. The post-operative rehabilitation for these patients will cost our healthcare system over $4.8 Billion dollars and put a major strain on outpatient care.
The good news is a solution is in the works and it has a name – Mobaflex. It helps to solve this challenge through a combination of motion sensors and patented software to remotely guide and monitor the patient during the recovery period, reducing the need for costly physical therapy.
Emergent Healthcare Solutions is the source of this breakthrough technology. They are beginning clinical trials at Slocum Orthopedic this spring.
On April 1,2016, Medicare changed its reimbursement structure for knee joint replacement at hospitals nationwide. Rather than a fee for service, Medicare is now paying the hospitals a fixed amount for the surgery, regardless of the actual costs. This has created a huge problem for hospitals, as current costs exceed Medicare funding.
Patients going through this process today have limited and often cumbersome or complex rehabilitation options to choose from.
Paul Schlumpberger, CEO of Emergent, knew there had to be a better way. So he got to work and consorted with his team:
An expert Orthopedic surgeon, leading physical therapist, and former top ranking CTO in the tech space joined with Paul to embrace this challenge. The result of their dedicated research and development was manifest in a two-part system: one part software, and the other a physical sensor that would relay information to the software.
Emergent’s product, Mobaflex, uses motion sensors and patented software to remotely guide and monitor the patient during the recovery period, thus improving outcomes and saving cost in three major ways:
Paul was looking for a solution to create a quick and reliable prototype to use for trials. Speed was of critical importance and Emergent wanted to get things moving. He needed to take a working replica to the 800 hospitals that perform knee replacements for Medicare patients.
He also was thinking ahead and needed a path to production and to be as efficient as possible in the process.
Paul selected GoProto, Inc. to help him determine the best method to develop functional prototypes, injection tooling, and injection molded parts to fit his team’s specifications.
Like many innovators, Paul stated he has always been “hesitant to hand his product and IP over to unproven offshore manufacturers.” GoProto was able to put his fears to rest with assurances that come from decades of hands-on experience.
GoProto also offered Paul a team that could handle all stages of his product development, from prototypes all the way through parts production.
Another significant concern for Paul was communicating progress to his investors; they understandably wanted to see how their money was being spent. Once again, GoProto stepped up to provide intricate detail of the project and its progress with ongoing reports, photos, direct communication with engineers and more.
These updates allowed Paul and his team to track progress and also make real-time changes. The high-resolution photos afforded sufficient clarity to make late-process texture and paint adjustments.