February's top stories: New Zealand approves outpatient centre, rapid tests for Zika virus

New Zealand government granted approval for the developed design stage of a NZ$72m ($46m) outpatient centre to be built in Canterbury, and Texas Children's Hospital and Houston Methodist Hospital developed hospital-based rapid tests for the Zika virus. Hospitalmanagement.net wraps up the key headlines from February 2016.


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New Zealand Government approves new $46m outpatient facility for Christchurch

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The government of New Zealand granted approval for the developed design stage of a NZ$72m ($46m) outpatient centre to be built in Canterbury. The design process is in progress, with early concepts and preliminary design completed in two months.

The next step in the developed design stage, such as detail of room layouts, will be initiated this month.

The new five-storey outpatient centre will be located in the Health Precinct on St Andrew's triangle, opposite Christchurch Hospital.

Texas hospitals develop first rapid detection tests for Zika virus

Texas Children's Hospital and Houston Methodist Hospital developed the country's first hospital-based rapid tests for the Zika virus.

The Zika virus is a member of the Flaviviridae family and is transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. It is composed of RNA as its genetic material.

The test was developed in a few weeks under the LE and Virginia Simmons Collaborative in Virus Detection and Surveillance.

CHLA and Thermo Fisher to develop NGS panel for paediatric cancer research

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Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) and Thermo Fisher Scientific collaborated to develop a next-generation sequencing (NGS) based panel for paediatric cancer research.

The NGS panel is a targeted DNA and RNA sequencing-based research gene panel, which will use Thermo Fisher's Ion Torrent NGS platform and Ion AmpliSeq technology to analyse and promote an understanding of pathogenesis and a potential treatment of paediatric cancer patients.

The system is claimed to be CHLA's first NGS panel to target biomarkers associated with childhood cancers.

Samsung NeuroLogica and Mercy Life Flight Network launch new mobile stroke unit in Ohio, US

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Samsung NeuroLogica and Mercy Life Flight Network launched its new mobile stroke unit (MSU) in greater north western Ohio to cater to fast treatment requirements for patients suffering strokes.

The vehicle, the fourth of its kind, was developed jointly by Stryker, Frazer and Samsung NeuroLogica, with a $1m grant from the Mercy Foundation.

Procured in partnership with the Lucas County Commissioners and the city of Toledo to address new stroke care protocols, the MSU comprises a critical care nurse, paramedic and CT technologist for immediate attention for patients.

Inova Women's Hospital provides pharmacogenomic test for newborns

US-based non-profit health organisation Inova Health System started offering MediMap, a pharmacogenomic (PGx) test, to all babies born in the new Inova Women's Hospital.

PGx combines pharmacology and genomics. It is claimed that Inova is the only health system in the US that offers the PGx test to newborns as part of its standard package of care.

Over the last few years, most medicines have been developed and prescribed to patients in a 'one size fits all' approach. PGx testing is designed to inform physicians about a child's genetic makeup to determine the best medication and dosage.

Manipal Hospitals introduces Masimo's remote monitoring and clinician notification system

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Manipal Hospitals in India introduced Masimo's remote monitoring and clinician notification system, Patient SafetyNet.

It is said to be the first hospital in India to incorporate the technology.

The Masimo Patient SafetyNet generates near real-time information from any connected Masimo device at a central station and triggers an alarm from bedside devices to alert clinicians via pager or third party gateway to internet protocol (IP) phones.

Manipal Health Enterprises senior president Nagendra Swamy said: "The technology will notify the hospital team when there are signs of deterioration and allow our patients to be monitored even though the nurse is not physically in the room with them."

Masimo Patient SafetyNet operates while being networked with Masimo bedside monitors, which provides continuous and noninvasive monitoring of oxygen saturation (SpO2), pulse rate, respiration rate and other parameters.

MDI Hospital acquires Toshiba Aplio 500 Platinum ultrasound system

Mount Desert Island (MDI) Hospital in the US acquired the Aplio 500 Platinum ultrasound system from Toshiba America Medical Systems to perform more non-invasive exams and improve patient care.

The hospital will use the Aplio 500 Platinum ultrasound system's advanced visualisation technology, including Shear Wave elastography, to measure liver tissue elasticity and help diagnose patients with hepatitis C.

Aplio 500 Platinum combines advanced visualisation technology, workflow automation tools and ergonomics to reduce operator steps.

Prime Healthcare acquires four acute care community hospitals in the US

US-based Prime Healthcare Services completed the acquisition of four acute care hospitals and affiliated entities, growing its network to 42 hospitals in 14 states throughout the country.

Prime acquired 88-bed Lehigh Regional Medical Center in Lehigh Acres, Florida, 331-bed Southern Regional Medical Center in Riverdale, Georgia, 153-bed Suburban Community Hospital in East Norriton, Pennsylvania and 152-bed River Valley Health Partners (RVHP) in East Liverpool, Ohio.

Over the next five years, Prime has committed more than $80m to capital improvements at the four hospitals.