Physicians Interactive buys classic mobile medical publisher Skyscape: Digital sales and health marketing company Physicians Interactive acquired mobile medical content publisher Skyscape late last week for an undisclosed sum. According to a PI press release, the deal gives its partners access to Skyscape’s more than 1 million users. Skyscape’s mobile apps and PDA programs for health practitioners compete with similar offerings from Epocrates, Thomson Reuters and many more.
Wireless health needs lobbyists too: For medical device companies aiming to bring clinically-focused wireless health services to market, there are a number of trailblazers in the industry that have left go-to-market strategy clues along the way. In the past, we’ve discussed FDA and FCC regulatory frameworks facing wireless health and the importance of securing CMS reimbursement. To influence the federal government, most industries turn to seasoned lobbyists, and a quick look at the lobbying activity paid for by two wireless health pioneers — CardioNet and LifeWatch — demonstrates that this industry is no different. In the past few years these two companies spent a combined total of $430,000 lobbying the federal government.
Medical industry to encroach on fitness industry’s dominance of the wireless sensor market: Wearable wireless sensors are set to grow to more than 400 million devices by 2014, according to a recent report from ABI Research. The firm believes demand will come from the professional healthcare, home healthcare and sports and fitness markets, but each will develop at different speeds and support different applications. ABI estimates that the sports and fitness market represents more than 90 percent of the wireless sensor market today, but medical uses will quickly carve into the fitness industry’s lead in the years ahead.
Funding currently chasing clinicians, not consumers? Venture capital firms invested in clinically-focused wireless startups this year (including Monica Healthcare, eCardio and BiancaMed) and Physicians Interactive just acquired Skyscape, a mobile app developer for health practitioners. Meanwhile, consumer-facing wireless health startups like LifeComm have struggled to raise the funding they need to stay afloat. Do clinician-facing wireless health companies have a better chance of surviving the current economic malaise? It sure seems like it.
Brian Dolan is editor of mobihealthnews, the emerging wireless health industry’s daily monitor.