Hoana Medical monitor wins FDA approval
By Sean Hao
Advertiser Staff Writer
By Sean Hao
Honolulu-based Hoana Medical yesterday said it has received Food and Drug Administration approval to start selling a new advanced hospital bed technology.
The technology uses a special pad and monitor to automatically display and record a person's heart and respiratory rate without the need for leads, electrodes or cuffs. For Hoana, the FDA approval is a major milestone, said Patrick Sullivan, chief executive for Hoana.
"This means we can start selling the product," he said. "That's a big thing for the business. Without it you can't generate any revenues from it."
Employment at Hoana could grow from about 35 to 55 people as support and sales staff are increased to handle added business. Sullivan said he hoped that tens of thousands of units would be placed in hospitals within the next few years. The cost of using the devices could be about $15 a day, he said.
For hospitals, the potential payoff of the technology is in providing closer monitoring of patients with existing staff. Typically, nurses check in on patients at least four times a day during their rounds.
It's the first and only commercial product so far for the four-year-old company, which was spun off by Honolulu research firm Oceanit Laboratories. The hospital bed technology was originally developed for the U.S. military as a means of measuring vital signs under battlefield conditions.
In December Hoana announced that it raised $10.2 million from investors to help market and sell the device. The company will initially focus sales efforts on the medical-surgical areas at large regional hospitals and hospital chains
The device has been tested at Tripler Army Medical Center and in Kaiser's Moanalua hospital's intensive-care unit.
Manufacturing of the devices is done on the Mainland.
Reach Sean Hao at firstname.lastname@example.org.