Merck & Co.’s strategic investment arm kicked off the year by leading a $20 million series C announced today by PatientSafe Solutions. The San Diego company makes PatientTouch, a point-of-care mobile device that helps nurses manage their clinical work flow, document and share patient information, and facilitate coordinated care by enabling communication via text message and phone.
In its announcement, PatientSafe said it would use the funds to drive adoption of its flagship product in hospitals and health systems. Investment firms Camden Partners, TPG Capital and Psilos Group also participated in the round.
The device, first introduced in 2011, has Apple iPod touch technology at its core and includes a Positive Patient Identification bar code scanner to help providers ensure proper patient identification, medication administration, specimen collection and care orders.
PatientSafe also says it has plans for more mobile products to help hospitals deliver better care more efficiently under Meaningful Use guidelines.
Easing and encouraging the practice of coordinated care has driven a number of clinical communications startups like Voalte, a smartphone solution that lets nurses and clinicians communicate via voice, alarms and text, and Care Thread, a maker of apps for patient handoffs. About half of clinicians report using mobile devices at the bedside to collect information, according to the 2012 HIMSS Mobile Technology Survey (PDF).
[Photo from PatientSafe Solutions]