Worcester Polytechnic launches health IT innovation lab

With $17 million in funding from the state and GE Healthcare, WPI said the lab will advance digital health and medical device development and create new jobs in the region.
By Bernie Monegain
11:17 AM
Worcester Polytech health IT innovation lab

The Massachusetts Governor’s Office through the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, known as MassTech, is investing $5 million to build a digital and medical device research lab at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Massachusetts.

GE Healthcare Life Science is contributing another $2.5 million, earmarked for equipment and other needs.

For its part, WPI is adding $9.5 million in investment for the initiative it calls PracticePoint at WPI.

The PracticePoint lab will include simulated healthcare settings to conduct advanced research and development and, ultimately, yield new technologies.

In addition to enabling academic and industry teams to conduct research at PracticePoint, the center also plans to provide programs aimed at workforce development to support the blooming digital health industry in Massachusetts.

The center will feature four research areas: surgical, clinical, rehabilitative, and home health.

“Imagine new ways to treat inoperable tumors, new systems that allow elders to remain at home safely, or smart devices that speed rehabilitative care — these are just some of the extraordinary technologies we hope will emerge when we bring together creative engineers, scientists and clinicians to work in the novel setting that PracticePoint provides,” WPI President Laurie Leshin said in a statement.

WPI said it will provide rapid point-of-practice testing that brings together healthcare practitioners and technical teams with advanced manufacturing infrastructure and testing technologies. Also, the initiative includes plans to integrate secure data analytics and equipment to test emerging technologies for cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

"PracticePoint at WPI will help ensure Massachusetts continues as a global leader in digital healthcare and the innovation economy,” Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said in a statement.

Twitter: @Bernie_HITN
Email the writer: bernie.monegain@himssmedia.com

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